[ loo-kyoo-breyt ]
/ ˈlu kyʊˌbreɪt /

verb (used without object), lu·cu·brat·ed, lu·cu·brat·ing.

to work, write, or study laboriously, especially at night.
to write learnedly.

Origin of lucubrate

1615–25; < Latin lūcubrātus, past participle of lūcubrāre to work by artificial light, equivalent to lūcu-, variant (before labials) of lūci-, combining form of lūcēre to shine + -br(um) instrumental suffix + -ā- theme vowel + -tus past participle suffix
Related formslu·cu·bra·tor, nounlu·cu·bra·to·ry [loo-kyoo-bruh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee] /luˈkyu brəˌtɔr i, -ˌtoʊr i/, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for lucubrate


/ (ˈluːkjʊˌbreɪt) /


(intr) to write or study, esp at night
Derived Formslucubrator, noun

Word Origin for lucubrate

C17: from Latin lūcubrāre to work by lamplight
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 lucubrate



"to work at night," 1620s, from Latin lucubratus, past participle of lucubrare "to work by lamplight" (see lucubration). Literally, "to work by artificial light," hence "to work laboriously."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper