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90s Slang You Should Know


[ves-per] /ˈvɛs pər/
(initial capital letter) the evening star, especially Venus; Hesperus.
Also called vesper bell. a bell rung at evening.
vespers, (sometimes initial capital letter) Ecclesiastical.
  1. a religious service in the late afternoon or the evening.
  2. the sixth of the seven canonical hours, or the service for it, occurring in the late afternoon or the evening.
  3. Roman Catholic Church. a part of the office to be said in the evening by those in major orders, frequently made a public ceremony in the afternoons or evenings of Sundays and holy days.
  4. Anglican Church. evensong (def 1).
Archaic. evening.
of, pertaining to, appearing in, or proper to the evening.
of or relating to vespers.
Origin of vesper
1350-1400; Middle English, partly < Latin: evening, evening star; partly < Old French vespres evening service < Medieval Latin vesperās, accusative plural of Latin vespera, feminine variant of vesper; cognate with Greek hésperos; akin to west Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for vesper
Historical Examples
  • vesper held it in his hand for a minute, then he silently put it in his pocket.

    Rose Charlitte Marshall Saunders
  • Ah, that is the vesper bell, as they call it—the unclean beasts that they are!

    Earl Hubert's Daughter Emily Sarah Holt
  • So after the vesper meal was eaten, the lady departed to her own chamber, leaving the knight in much ease and content.

  • Perhaps you have also heard of the losses of my son Percival at the vesper Club.

    The Silent Bullet Arthur B. Reeve
  • Then his nervous hands flung it down, and vesper, leaning over, politely asked if he would lend it to him.

    Rose Charlitte Marshall Saunders
  • At the vesper Club, always up-to-date, the ball was of platinum, not of ivory.

    The Silent Bullet Arthur B. Reeve
  • vesper stared at Agapit, and seeing that he was determined not to leave the room, he turned his back squarely on him.

    Rose Charlitte Marshall Saunders
  • The vesper custom I saw for myself every time I took an evening drive.

    Sketches of Our Life at Sarawak Harriette McDougall
  • Olaf loved the birds, and the cheer of their vesper song and bedtime twitter comforted Alan.

    The Alaskan James Oliver Curwood
  • Illustrated by vesper L. George, and by numerous photographs.

    John and Betty's History Visit Margaret Williamson
British Dictionary definitions for vesper


an evening prayer, service, or hymn
an archaic word for evening
(modifier) of or relating to vespers
See also vespers
Word Origin
C14: from Latin: evening, the evening star; compare Greek hesperos evening; see west


the planet Venus, when appearing as the evening star
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for vesper

late 14c., "the evening star," from Old French vespre, from Latin vesper (masc.), vespera (fem.) "evening star, evening, west," related to Greek hesperos, and ultimately from PIE *wespero- (cf. Old Church Slavonic večeru, Lithuanian vakaras, Welsh ucher, Old Irish fescor "evening"), from root *we- "down" (cf. Sanskrit avah "down, downward"). Meaning "evening" is attested from c.1600.

Vespers "sixth canonical hour" is attested from 1610s, from plural of Latin vespera "evening;" the native name was evensong (Old English æfen-sang).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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