- the last of the seven canonical hours, or the service for it, originally occurring after the evening meal but now usually following immediately upon vespers.
Also com·plin [kom-plin] /ˈkɒm plɪn/.
Origin of compline
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for compline
Then followed Compline, and then the monks were ready for bed, and retired to the dortor.English Villages
P. H. Ditchfield
"It is eight o'clock, and I must be back to Compline," he said.
But the bell rang for Compline, and the brothers passed into church.
As for Compline, it resounds when night, the symbol of death, has come.En Route
J.-K. (Joris-Karl) Huysmans
Songs of thanksgiving were uplifted that night at Compline in the choir.Border Ghost Stories
- RC Church the last of the seven canonical hours of the divine office
C13: from Old French complie, from Medieval Latin hōra complēta, literally: the completed hour, from Latin complēre to fill up, complete
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
Word Origin and History for compline
the last canonical service of the day, early 13c., cumplie, compelin, from Old French complie (12c.), from Latin completa (hora), from completus (see complete (adj.)); with unexplained -n-.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper