[ loo-muh-nair-ee-uh; Spanish loo-mee-nah-ryah ]
/ ˌlu məˈnɛər i ə; Spanish ˌlu miˈnɑ ryɑ /

noun, plural lu·mi·nar·i·as [loo-muh-nair-ee-uh z; Spanish loo-mee-nah-ryahs] /ˌlu məˈnɛər i əz; Spanish ˌlu miˈnɑ ryɑs/.

(especially in Mexico and the southwestern U.S.) a Christmas lantern consisting of a lighted candle set in sand inside a paper bag.

Origin of luminaria

1945–50; < Mexican Spanish, Spanish: any lamp or lantern displayed during a festival < Medieval Latin, Late Latin lūmināria, orig. neuter plural of lūmināris lamp; see lumen, -ar1 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for luminaria

  • Sometimes a weak moon-ray passing down the luminaria would strike at the bottom on a slab of marble covered with inscriptions.

    The Death of the Gods|Dmitri Mrejkowski