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Early morning in Xepon, Laos (July 2004)

Dawn is the time that marks the beginning of the twilight before sunrise. It is recognized by the presence of weak sunlight, while the sun itself is still below the horizon. Dawn should not be confused with sunrise, which is the moment when the leading edge of the sun itself appears above the horizon.

The duration of the twilight period between dawn and sunrise varies greatly depending on the observer's latitude, from a few minutes in equatorial regions to many hours in polar regions.


There are also more technical definitions of dawn, including the following:

Astronomical dawn 
the moment after which the sky is no longer completely dark; formally defined as the time at which the sun is 18 degrees below the horizon in the morning. [1]
Nautical dawn
the time at which there is enough sunlight for the horizon and some objects to be distinguishable; formally, when the sun is 12 degrees below the horizon in the morning. [1]
Civil dawn 
that time at which there is enough light for objects to be distinguishable, so that outdoor activities can commence; formally, when the sun is 6 degrees below the horizon in the morning. [1]


Many Indo-European mythologies have a goddess of dawn, separate from the male Solar deity, her name deriving from PIE *h2ausos-, derivations of which include Greek Eos, Roman Aurora, Indian Ushas, Slavic Zornitsa and possibly a Germanic *Austrōn- (whence Easter).


In folklore, belief that dawn banishes evil spirits, zombies, ghosts, vampires, trolls, fairies and demons is common, for various reasons, throughout Eastern and Western cultures.


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Up to date as of January 22, 2010

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Dawn may refer to:

1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010
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From LoveToKnow 1911

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Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

See also dawn



Proper noun




  1. A female given name sometimes given to a girl born at that time of day.


  • 1958 MurielSpark, The Go-away Bird: With Other Stories, Macmillan 1958, page 20 ( "The Black Madonna"):
    "Thomas, if it's a boy," she said, "after my uncle. But if it's a girl I'd like something fancy for a first name." - - -
    "What about Dawn?" she said. "I like the sound of Dawn. Then Mary for a second name. Dawn Mary Parker, it sounds sweet."
    "Dawn! That's not a Christian name," he said. Then he told her, "Just as you please, dear."
  • 1964 Bob Gaudio - Sandy Linzer, Dawn ( a song ) :
    Dawn, go away, I’m no good for you.


  • Anagrams of adnw
  • wand

Simple English

Redirecting to Twilight

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