- The definition of a curfew is a time by which you must be home in the evenings, or is a designated time after which you have to stay inside.
If you are required to be in your home after 11:00 PM, this is an example of an 11:00 PM curfew.
- in the Middle Ages, the ringing of a bell every evening as a signal for people to cover fires, put out lights, and retire
- the bell
- the time at which it was rung
- a time, generally in the evening, set as a deadline beyond which inhabitants of occupied cities in wartime, children under a specified age, etc. may not appear on the streets or in public places
- the regulation establishing this time
Origin: Middle English curfeu ; from Old French covrefeu, literally , cover fire ; from covrir (see cover) plush feu, fire ; from Classical Latin focus, fireplace: see focus
Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
- A regulation requiring certain or all people to leave the streets or be at home at a prescribed hour.
- a. The time at which such a restriction begins or is in effect: a 10 P.M. curfew for all residents.b. The signal, such as a bell, announcing the beginning of this restriction.
Origin: Middle English curfeu, from Old French cuevrefeu : covrir, to cover; see cover + feu, fire (from Latin focus, hearth).