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Ash Wednesday

noun
1.
the first day of Lent.
Origin
1250-1300
1250-1300
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for Ash Wednesday

Ash Wednesday

noun
1.
the first day of Lent, named from the practice of Christians of placing ashes on their heads as a sign of penitence
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Ash Wednesday in Culture

Ash Wednesday definition


The seventh Wednesday before Easter; the first day of Lent for most Christians; the day after “Fat Tuesday,” or Mardi Gras. It is frequently observed as a day of fasting and repentance for sin. In some churches, ashes are placed on the foreheads of worshipers on Ash Wednesday as a reminder of their mortality. The words of God to Adam in the Bible are often used in the ceremony: “Dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.”

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Article for Ash Wednesday

in the Christian church, the first day of Lent, occurring 6 12 weeks before Easter (between February 4 and March 11, depending on the date of Easter). In the early Christian church, the length of the Lenten celebration varied, but eventually it began 6 weeks (42 days) before Easter. This provided only 36 days of fast (excluding Sundays). In the 7th century, 4 days were added before the first Sunday in Lent in order to establish 40 fasting days, in imitation of Jesus Christ's fast in the desert.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Word of The Day

Difficulty index for Ash Wednesday

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Word Value for Ash

6
5
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