• WordNet 3.6
    • n Candlemas feast day commemorating the presentation of Christ in the temple; a quarter day in Scotland
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • n Candlemas The second day of February, on which is celebrated the feast of the Purification of the Virgin Mary; -- so called because the candles for the altar or other sacred uses are blessed on that day.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n Candlemas An ecclesiastical festival held on the second day of February in honor of the presentation of the infant Christ in the temple and the purification of the Virgin Mary. It seems to have been instituted in the first half of the fifth century, though some authorities believe it to be older. It was first observed in the East. The feast takes its name from the custom, as old as the seventh century, of carrying lighted candles in procession in memory of Simeon's words at the presentation of the infant (Luke ii. 32), “a light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel.” On this day Roman Catholics consecrate the candles and tapers to be used in their churches throughout the ensuing year. The feast is retained in the Anglican Church, and is also observed by the Lutherans. It is also called the Purification, and in the Greek Church the Hypapante. In Scotland the date of this festival, February 2d, is one of the quarter-days for paying and receiving rents, interest, school-fees, etc.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Candlemas kan′dl-mas a festival of the R.C. Church in honour of the purification of the Virgin Mary, on 2d February, and so called from the number of candles used.
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
AS. candelmæsse, candel, candle + mæsse, mass
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Candle and Mass.


In literature:

East wind on Candlemas day, 462.
"Notes and Queries, Index of Volume 5, January-June, 1852" by Various
Candlemas, ancient symbols of, ii.
"The Stones of Venice, Volume III (of 3)" by John Ruskin
Here have I dwelt with more and less, From Hallow-tide till Candlemas!
"Fifteenth Century Prose and Verse" by Various
The procession set out from Ely House, in Holborn, on Candlemas Day, in the evening.
"Old and New London" by Walter Thornbury
May I never, but she's wearing the same one since Candlemas!
"Davenport Dunn, Volume 1 (of 2) A Man Of Our Day" by Charles James Lever
Elizabeth granted an additional three days' fair at Candlemas.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 8, Slice 6" by Various
What does my brother do but take me, soon after Candlemas, to a boy-sale at St. Gall?
"Edelweiss" by Berthold Auerbach
You mustn't ask for the marriage to take place before Candlemas.
"Landolin" by Berthold Auerbach
Monica had brought back a new quartet, which they practised all that Candlemas Eve.
"Plashers Mead" by Compton Mackenzie
Candlemas-day (2d of February) was one of them.
"The Philosophy of the Weather" by Thomas Belden Butler

In poetry:

But me, who ride alone, some carle shall find
Dead in my arms in the half-melted snow,
When all unkindly with the shifting wind,
The thaw comes on at Candlemas: I know
"Sir Galahad, A Christmas Mystery" by William Morris
The Candlemas crosses hang near my bed;
To look at them puts me much in dread,
They mark the good time that's gone and past:
It's like this year's one will prove the last.
"The Girl's Lamentation" by William Allingham

In news:

In a solemn pontifical Mass at Munich's Liebfrauen Cathedral Feb 2, the feast of Candlemas, the former bishop of Trier took possession of the Archdiocese of Munich.