From King Dictionary of Contemporary English
Related topics: Chronology
dawndawn1 /dɔːn $ dɒːn/ ●●○ noun [countable, uncountable] 1 TMCthe time at the beginning of the day when light first appears SYN daybreak, → duskat dawn The boats set off at dawn. When dawn broke (=the first light of the day appeared), we were still 50 miles from Calcutta. I was up at the crack of dawn (=very early in the morning) to get the plane. We worked from dawn to dusk (=through the whole day while it is light). the cold light of dawn2 the dawn of civilization/time etc3 a false dawn
Examples from the Corpus
dawnBut even at 6: 30 at night, there can be a dawn.The cowbird lays her egg at dawn.One morning she rose at dawn and climbed Ballymacadoyle Hill, behind the fort.Eck therefore had a whole night's steaming to put himself a hundred miles from the sinking before submerging at dawn.Waking with a start, she lay in the grey half-light of dawn, wondering where she was.It had been the hope which had kept her going through the dawn and early morning.We talked almost until dawn.There, we spent a night at a Yonchon inn and waited until dawn to make our getaway.at dawnAn ice storm at dawn paralyzed St. Louis traffic.
dawndawn2 ●○○ verb [intransitive] 1 START TO HAPPEN, EXIST ETCif day or morning dawns, it begins The morning dawned fresh and clear after the storm.2 START TO HAPPEN, EXIST ETCif a period of time or situation dawns, it begins The age of Darwin had dawned.3 THINK something/HAVE A THOUGHTif a feeling or idea dawns, you have it for the first time It began to dawn that something was wrong. dawn on somebody→ See Verb table
Examples from the Corpus
dawnMonday dawned, as Mondays will, and it was back to the Soho Laundry.As the Cold War dawned in 1949, Galvin was starting his military career.Until it dawned on her that by postponing the decision she was making a decision.It dawned on me that no one seemed to be idle.Suddenly it dawned on Ramsay that this flag was considerably larger than that flown by the Regent.Suddenly it dawned on Rose that he stopped by so frequently because he was attracted to her.It is dawning on the rebels that they may have wider support than first realised.I was afraid that if I appeared too eager, it might dawn on the woman she had made a terrible mistake.
Origin dawn1 (1200-1300) daw to dawn ((10-19 centuries)), from Old English dagian; related to day