Twelfth Night

Twelfth Night

noun
1.
the evening before Twelfth Day, formerly observed with various festivities.
2.
the evening of Twelfth Day itself.
3.
(italics) a comedy (1602) by Shakespeare.

Origin:
before 900; Middle English; Old English

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World English Dictionary
Twelfth Night
 
n
a.  the evening of Jan 5, the eve of Twelfth Day, formerly observed with various festal celebrations
 b.  the evening of Twelfth Day itself
 c.  (as modifier): Twelfth-Night customs

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Cultural Dictionary

Twelfth Night definition


A comedy by William Shakespeare. The two central characters are a twin brother and sister; each thinks that the other has been lost at sea. The sister disguises herself as a boy and goes to serve the duke of the country, a bitter man disappointed in love. The brother reappears and marries the woman whom the duke has been pursuing, and his sister marries the duke. Twelfth Night begins with the line “If music be the food of love, play on.”

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
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