[ week-nahyt ]
/ ˈwikˌnaɪt /
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any night of the week, usually except Saturday and Sunday.
Also week·night·ly [week-nahyt-lee]. /ˈwikˌnaɪt li/. of, on, or for a weeknight: the weeknight lineup of TV programs.
Should you take this quiz on “shall” versus “should”? It should prove to be a quick challenge!
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Which form is used to state an obligation or duty someone has?

Origin of weeknight

First recorded in 1855–60; week + night

Words nearby weeknight

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022


What is a weeknight?

A weeknight is the evening of a weekday—any day that is not a weekend day.

Since the weekend is considered to consist of Saturday and Sunday, the weekdays are Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday.

The word week most commonly refers to any period of seven consecutive days, or to the seven-day period on the calendar that begins on Sunday and ends on Saturday. However, in weekday and weeknight, it refers to the five-day period that’s often considered the workweek or school week. The standard workweek is from Monday through Friday, though working schedules vary widely.

For this reason, terms like weekday and weeknight are typically used—instead of just saying day or night—to distinguish them from the days and nights on the weekend.

The similar terms work night and school night refer to nights when a person has to work or go to school the next day. Weeknight doesn’t necessarily imply this, but most people are probably less likely to call Friday night a weeknight since Friday evening is often considered the start of the weekend (though Friday is still considered a weekday.)

Weeknight is commonly used as an adjective, as in weeknight dinner. 

The word weeknights can be used as an adverb meaning on weeknights, as in I work weeknights, but I’m free weekends. 

Example: I don’t usually like to be out so late on a weeknight, but I couldn’t miss this!

Where does weeknight come from?

The first records of the word weeknight come from around the 1700s. The word weekday is much older, first recorded before the 900s.

Many people spend their weekend nights going out, spending time with friends, and staying up later. In contrast, weeknights are often work nights or school nights, when people tend to go to sleep earlier. This is what people are referring to when they say they’re out late for a weeknight. 

The word weeknight should not be confused with a wee knight, which is a very small knight whose shining armor is probably too heavy for the little guy! (Good luck not thinking about this every time you see the word weeknight now.)

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What are some other forms related to weeknight?

  • weeknights (plural noun, adverb)

What are some words that share a root or word element with weeknight


What are some words that often get used in discussing weeknight?

How is weeknight used in real life?

The word weeknight is typically used to distinguish a night as being one during the workweek as opposed to one on the weekend.



Try using weeknight!

True or False? 

Tuesday night is a weeknight.

How to use weeknight in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for weeknight

/ (ˈwiːkˌnaɪt) /

the evening or night of a weekday
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