twi·​light ˈtwī-ˌlīt How to pronounce twilight (audio)
often attributive
: the light from the sky between full night and sunrise or between sunset and full night produced by diffusion of sunlight through the atmosphere and its dust
also : a time of twilight
: an intermediate state that is not clearly defined
lived in the twilight of neutrality Newsweek
: a period of decline

Example Sentences

The sun set and twilight fell. stumbled around the twilight of the shuttered room, unable to see where she was going
Recent Examples on the Web But a new twilight struggle would be far murkier than the Cold War’s stark ideological contest between two systems across the globe. George Packer, The Atlantic, 21 Nov. 2022 Rorem’s twilight, like that of his peers, was a modest and quiet one. Joshua Barone, New York Times, 20 Nov. 2022 An ombré sun—which moves from lemony high noon shine to red twilight burn—arcs over this bluff as if engineered by a lighting designer in a surfing movie. Nick Remsen, Vogue, 17 Nov. 2022 The society will also host a twilight open house from 4 to 7 p.m. Dec. 3 and another open house from 1 to 4 p.m. Dec. 28. Sam Boyer, cleveland, 11 Nov. 2022 Using that brief, yet favorable, twilight observation time, astronomers identified an evasive trio of asteroids, including one nearly a mile wide that could potentially orbit into Earth’s path. Tim Newcomb, Popular Mechanics, 1 Nov. 2022 Thus began a long twilight struggle to fix the problem: an overhaul in 1963, further adjustments during the following decade, a gut renovation in 1976, yet more changes in 1992. Alex Ross, The New Yorker, 24 Oct. 2022 Charles soldiered on, increasingly standing in for the queen in her twilight years. Danica Kirka, Chicago Tribune, 8 Sep. 2022 The initial endpapers show a snowy village at twilight and residents apparently reacting to the sight of a young girl departing on horseback. Meghan Cox Gurdon, WSJ, 4 Nov. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'twilight.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of twilight was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near twilight

Cite this Entry

“Twilight.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition


twi·​light ˈtwī-ˌlīt How to pronounce twilight (audio)
: the period or the light from the sky between full night and sunrise or between sunset and full night

More from Merriam-Webster on twilight

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