Vigil meaning

vĭj'əl
The definition of a vigil is a quiet gathering, usually during normal sleeping hours.

An example of a vigil is a candlelight service for someone who died.

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A watch kept during normal sleeping hours, especially over the body of a recently deceased or dying person.
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The eve of a religious festival observed by staying awake as a devotional exercise.
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Ritual devotions observed on the eve of a holy day.
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The evening or day before a festival, or the devotional services held then.
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The eve of some religious festival in which staying awake is part of the ritual devotions.
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Origin of vigil

  • Middle English vigile a devotional watching from Old French from Latin vigilia wakefulness, watch from vigil awake weg- in Indo-European roots
    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition
  • Middle English vigile (“a devotional watching"), from Old French vigile, from Latin vigilia (“wakefulness, watch"), from vigil (“awake"), from Proto-Indo-European *weg- (“to be strong").
    From Wiktionary
  • Related to vigor, and more distantly compare vis and vital, from similar Proto-Indo-European roots and meanings (lively, power, life), via Latin. For use of “live, alive" in sense “watching", compare qui vive.
    From Wiktionary