- any of several small, Old World, migratory birds of the thrush family, especially Luscinia megarhynchos, of Europe, noted for the melodious song of the male, given chiefly at night during the breeding season.
Origin of nightingale
- Florencethe Lady with the Lamp, 1820–1910, English nurse: reformer of hospital conditions and procedures; reorganizer of nurse's training programs.
Examples from the Web for nightingale
She reaches across the years, back to A Million Nightingale and onward to Take One Candle Light a Room.This Week’s Hot Reads: Sept. 10, 2012
September 10, 2012
Though you go to bed with the nightingale, you rise with the lark.Life And Adventures Of Martin Chuzzlewit
A nightingale was singing somewhere in the elm trees which bordered the garden.The Avenger
E. Phillips Oppenheim
What does the nightingale care for a golden cage when he can get a twig?The Manxman
I was indescribably grieved to read of the death of Nightingale.
It is just the case of Kittermaster, Nightingale, or Scottie, isn't it?
- a brownish European songbird, Luscinia megarhynchos, with a broad reddish-brown tail: well known for its musical song, usually heard at night
- any of various similar or related birds, such as Luscinia luscinia (thrush nightingale)
- Florence, known as the Lady with the Lamp. 1820–1910, English nurse, famous for her work during the Crimean War. She helped to raise the status and quality of the nursing profession and founded a training school for nurses in London (1860)
Word Origin and History for nightingale
Old English næctigalæ, nihtegale, compound formed in Proto-Germanic (cf. Dutch nachtegaal, German Nachtigall) from *nakht- "night" (see night) + *galon "to sing," related to Old English giellan "yell" (see yell). With parasitic -n- that appeared mid-13c. Dutch nightingale "frog" is attested from 1769. In Japanese, "nightingale floor" is said to be the term for boards that creak when you walk on them.
French rossignol (Old French lousseignol) is, with Spanish ruiseñor, Portuguese rouxinol, Italian rosignuolo, from Vulgar Latin *rosciniola, dissimilated from Latin lusciniola "nightingale," diminutive of luscinia "nightingale."
- British nurse who organized (1854) and directed a unit of field nurses during the Crimean War and is considered the founder of modern nursing.