from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A feast formerly celebrated in England, during which bread from the season's first wheat was consecrated at Mass in thanksgiving for the harvest.
  • n. A feast formerly celebrated in commemoration of Saint Peter's deliverance from prison.
  • n. August 1, the day on which these feasts were celebrated.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. former festival held on 1st August celebrating the harvest.
  • n. 1st August, a quarter day
  • n. A modern pagan festival celebrated in early August celebrating the start of the grain harvest.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The first day of August; -- called also Lammas day, and Lammastide.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Originally, in England, the festival of the wheat-harvest, observed on the 1st of August, corresponding to the 12th in the modern calendar.
  • n. In Great Britain, the 1st of August as a date, which in Scotland is a quarter-day and in England a half-quarter-day.
  • n. The church festival of St. Peter's Chains, or St. Peter in the Fetters, observed on August 1st in memory of St. Peter's imprisonment and miraculous deliverance (Acts xii. 4–10).

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. commemorates Saint Peter's miraculous deliverance from prison; a quarter day in Scotland; a harvest festival in England


Middle English Lammasse, from Old English hlāfmæsse : hlāf, loaf + mæsse, Mass; see Mass.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
from Old English hlafmæsse (loaf mass, harvest festival) (Wiktionary)



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