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[dahrk-nis] /ˈdɑrk nɪs/
the state or quality of being dark:
The room was in total darkness.
absence or deficiency of light:
the darkness of night.
wickedness or evil:
Satan, the prince of darkness.
obscurity; concealment:
The darkness of the metaphor destroyed its effectiveness.
lack of knowledge or enlightenment:
heathen darkness.
lack of sight; blindness.
Origin of darkness
before 1050; Middle English derknesse, Old English deorcnysse. See dark, -ness
Related forms
predarkness, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for darkness
  • The festival lasts five days and celebrates the victory of good over evil, light over darkness, and knowledge over ignorance.
  • They are expected to confront the darkness and show evidence that they have done so in their papers.
  • The agitated zebras gallop back and forth in short, panicky dashes, then skitter off into the absolute darkness.
  • Scientists believe the lake could be home to cold-loving microbial life adapted to living in total darkness.
  • Astronomy and physics have come out of our wonder at the points of light in the darkness.
  • In humans melatonin levels rise at night, in response to darkness and cues from the circadian clock.
  • They could manipulate the colors of the face to increase the darkness or the yellow tones.
  • Circadian clock keeps ticking in constant darkness, or constant dim light.
  • Take me for example, for me the full moon is always waning or the darkness of the new moon is waning into light.
  • People that sleep in total darkness tend to sleep more deeply than those that have exposure to light.
Word Origin and History for darkness

Old English deorcnysse, from dark + -ness. Figurative use is recorded from mid-14c.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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darkness in the Bible

The plague (the ninth) of darkness in Egypt (Ex. 10:21) is described as darkness "which may be felt." It covered "all the land of Egypt," so that "they saw not one another." It did not extend to the land of Goshen (ver. 23). When Jesus hung upon the cross (Matt. 27:45; Luke 23:44), from the "sixth hour there was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour." On Mount Sinai, Moses (Ex. 20:21) "drew near unto the thick darkness where God was." This was the "thick cloud upon the mount" in which Jehovah was when he spake unto Moses there. The Lord dwelt in the cloud upon the mercy-seat (1 Kings 8:12), the cloud of glory. When the psalmist (Ps. 97:2) describes the inscrutable nature of God's workings among the sons of men, he says, "Clouds and darkness are round about him." God dwells in thick darkness. Darkness (Isa. 13:9, 10; Matt. 24:29) also is a symbol of the judgments that attend on the coming of the Lord. It is a symbol of misery and adversity (Job 18:6; Ps. 107:10; Isa. 8:22; Ezek. 30:18). The "day of darkness" in Joel 2:2, caused by clouds of locusts, is a symbol of the obscurity which overhangs all divine proceedings. "Works of darkness" are impure actions (Eph. 5:11). "Outer darkness" refers to the darkness of the streets in the East, which are never lighted up by any public or private lamps after nightfall, in contrast with the blaze of cheerful light in the house. It is also a symbol of ignorance (Isa. 9:2; 60:2; Matt. 6:23) and of death (Job 10:21; 17:13).

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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