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Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament [1]

Evening ( ἡ ὄψια [ sc . ὤρα], ἐσπέρα).—The Babylonians divided the day into equal parts by sun-watches. The ‘sixty system’ of minutes and seconds was in vogue among them. Among Syrian peoples also, it is likely, the same system prevailed. No trace of this is found among the Israelites, however, in the pre-exilic period. Another marked difference between the Babylonians and the Israelites is noteworthy. With the Israelites the day began at sunset, with the Babylonians at sunrise. It is at least certain that the reckoning from eve to eve became the exclusive method in Israel with the triumph of the Law. A kindred system prevailed among Arabs, Athenians, and Gauls (Pliny, HN ii. 79). It was customary, too, in ancient Israel to distinguish between the ‘first evening’ and the ‘second evening.’ It is not certain just where they drew the line (Edersheim). The phrase ‘between the two evenings’ ( bên hâ‘arbayîm ),  Exodus 16:12;  Exodus 29:39, as a designation of the time of the daily evening offerings, clearly meant some period in the late afternoon. The ‘first evening,’ it is generally thought, began about 3 p.m. and extended to sunset; the second began at sunset and continued into the night.

In  Matthew 14:15;  Matthew 14:23 we have the word ‘evening’ used in both senses. ‘When it was evening’ ( Matthew 14:15) clearly refers to the first evening (cf.  Luke 9:12 ‘and the day began to decline,’ Bible Union Ver.). For when the disciples suggested that Jesus send the multitude away, that they might go into the villages and buy themselves food, Jesus said they need not depart; and the feeding of the five thousand and the sending away of the multitude followed before ‘he went up into the mountain apart to pray.’ Then a second evening is spoken of in the words: ‘And when the evening was come, he was there alone’ ( Matthew 14:23). In the latter case, Jesus, after seeing His disciples off ( John 6:15), evidently sought the mountain solitude, as He did on other occasions, to spend much of the night in prayer ( Matthew 14:25). This second evening, then, was evidently verging on the night.

Geo. B. Eager.

Morrish Bible Dictionary [2]

The period from sunset till night. This was naturally the closing of the day, for God called the light 'day:' cf.  John 11:9 . "The evening was, and the morning was, one day:" that is, there was not day continuously, but through the alternation of night and morning day succeeded day.  Genesis 1:5 . The common way of reckoning the day among the Jews was from evening until the next evening. A difficulty has arisen as to the phrase ' between the two evenings. ' The paschal lamb was to be killed between the two evenings, and some have thought that this allowed the passover lamb to be killed any time between the evening of the 14th and the evening of the 15th Abib. This however cannot be the meaning because none of it was to be left till the morning; and because the same phrase is used respecting the daily sacrifice, and also as to lighting the lamps.   Exodus 12:6 , margin  ;  Exodus 29:39;  Exodus 30:8 . The Jewish writers are not agreed in their definition of the expression: some suppose it lies between the beginning and ending of sunset; others, from sunset to full darkness. Josephus says that the time of killing the passover was from the ninth hour till the eleventh, which would be about from three o'clock to five; but this would seem to make the 'evening' come at the end of the Jewish day, and not at the beginning.

Vine's Expository Dictionary of OT Words [3]

‛Ereb ( עֶרֶב , 6153), “evening, night.” The noun ‛ereb appears about 130 times and in all periods. This word represents the time of the day immediately preceding and following the setting of the sun. During this period, the dove returned to Noah’s ark (Gen. 8:11). Since it was cool, women went to the wells for water in the “evening” (Gen. 24:11). It was at “evening” that David walked around on top of his roof to refresh himself and cool off, and observed Bathsheba taking a bath (2 Sam. 11:2). In its first biblical appearance, ‛ereb marks the “opening of a day”: “And the evening and the morning were the first day” (Gen. 1:5). The phrase “between the evenings” means the period between sunset and darkness, “twilight” (Exod. 12:6; KJV, “in the evening”).

Second, in a late poetical use, the word can mean “night”: “When I lie down, I say, When shall I arise, and the night be gone? And I am full of tossings to and fro unto the dawning of the day” (Job 7:4).

King James Dictionary [4]

E'VENING, n. See Eve, Even. The latter part and close of the day, and the beginning of darkness or night properly the decline or fall of the day, or of the sun.

The evening and the morning were the first day.  Genesis 1

The precise time when evening begins, or when it ends, is not ascertained by usage. The word often includes a part at least of the afternoon, and indeed the whole afternoon as in the phrase, "The morning and evening service of the sabbath." In strictness, evening commences at the setting of the sun, and continues during twilight, and night commences with total darkness. But in customary language, the evening extends to bed-time, whatever that time may be. Hence we say, to spend an evening with a friend an evening visit.

1. The decline or latter part of life. We say, the evening of life, or of one's days. 2. The decline of any thing as the evening of glory.

E'VENING, a. Being at the close of day as the evening sacrifice.

American Tract Society Bible Dictionary [5]

The Hebrews reckoned two evenings in each day; as in the phrase, "between the two evenings,"  Exodus 12:6   Numbers 9:3   28:4 . In this interval the Passover was to be killed, and the daily evening sacrifice offered,  Exodus 29:39-41 , Hebrew. According to the Carites, this time between the evenings is the interval from sunset to complete darkness, that is, the evening is the interval from sunset to complete darkness, that is, the evening twilight. Compare  Deuteronomy 16:6 . According to the Pharisees and the rabbins, the first evening began when the sun inclined to descend more rapidly, that is, at the ninth hour; while the second or real evening commenced at sunset. See Day .

Wilson's Dictionary of Bible Types [6]

 Ecclesiastes 11:6 (b) The evening time in the life is the time when the shadows fall, the day's work is ended, sorrows and weakness have come, and hope has faded. We should be as busy serving GOD in the later years as we are in the early years of life. Sometimes the dark times precede the bright times. We read that the evening and the morning were the first day. The darkness preceded the light. (gee also  Exodus 16:12;  Numbers 9:21). We read in  Ezekiel 24:18 "in the evening, my wife died, and in the morning I did as I was commanded." We should not permit sorrow and difficulty to hinder our service. It may be taken also as a picture of the fact that our time on earth is the evening time, followed by the morning in glory, a morning without clouds.

People's Dictionary of the Bible [7]

Evening,  Psalms 55:17, Even-tide,  Genesis 24:63. The Hebrews reckoned two evenings, one commencing at sunset and embracing the period of twilight, and the other commencing at dark. Some suppose that the first evening commenced as early as 3 o'clock in the afternoon, and the second at sunset. It was in the interval between the two evenings, at whichever of these periods it occurred, that the passover was to be killed and the daily sacrifice offered. See marginal reading of  Exodus 12:6;  Numbers 9:3;  Numbers 28:4. "Even-tide" is the same with "evening-time."

Webster's Dictionary [8]

(1): ( p. pr. & vb. n.) of Even

(2): ( n.) The latter part and close of the day, and the beginning of darkness or night; properly, the decline of the day, or of the sum.

(3): ( n.) The latter portion, as of life; the declining period, as of strength or glory.

Easton's Bible Dictionary [9]

 Genesis 1:5 Mark 13:35 Exodus 16:12 30:8 12:6  Leviticus 23:5  Jeremiah 5:6

Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible [10]

EVENING . See Time.

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature [11]

( עֶרֶב , E'Reb, E Dusk; Ἑσπέρα , Ὀψία ) , the period following sunset, with which the Jewish day ( Νυχθήμερον ) began ( Genesis 1:5;  Mark 13:35). (See Day). Some writers have argued that the first creative day ( Genesis 1:5) is reckoned from the Morning, when light first appeared ( Genesis 1:3), as if "evening" then designated not a Portion of time, but a Termination of the first creative period or age; but this does violence to the whole order of the narrative, in which a period of night invariably precedes one of daylight, precisely in accordance with the conventional Hebrew usage of a Νυχθήμερον or "evening-and-morning," and as the terms are expressly defined in the former clause of  Genesis 1:5. If "evening" in the phrase in question be distinguishable from the "night" as a terminus, it is certainly a terminus a quo, as dating the latter from the aboriginal "darkness,"  Genesis 1:2, and not a terminus ad quem of the ensuing day. (See Night).

The Hebrews appear to have reckoned two evenings in each day; as in the phrase בֵּין עִרְבִּיַם , Between the Two Evenings ( Exodus 16:12;  Exodus 30:8), by which they designated that part of the day in which the paschal lamb was to be killed ( Exodus 12:6;  Leviticus 23:5;  Numbers 9:3;  Numbers 9:5; in the Hebrews and margin); and, at the same time, the evening sacrifice was offered, the lamps lighted, and the incense burned ( Exodus 29:39;  Exodus 29:41;  Numbers 28:4). But the ancients themselves disagreed concerning this usage; for the Samaritans and Caraites (comp. Reland, De Samarit. § 22, in his Diss. Miscell volume 2; Trigland, De Karaeis, chap. iv) understood the time to be that between sunset and twilight, and so Aben Esra at  Exodus 12:6, who writes that it was about the third hour (9 o'clock P.M.); the Pharisees, on the other hand, as early as the time of Josephus (War, 6:9, 3), and the Rabbins (Pesach, 5:3), thought that "the First evening" was that period of the afternoon when the sun is verging towards setting (Gr. Δείλη Πρωϊ v Α ), "the Second evening" the precise moment of sunset itself ( Δείλη Ὀψία ), according to which opinion the paschal lamb would bed slaughtered from the ninth to the eleventh hour (3 to 5 o'clock P.M.). The former of these opinions seems preferable on account of the expression in  Deuteronomy 16:6, "when the sun goeth down," בְּבוַֹא הִשֶּׁמֶשׁ ; and also on account of the similar phraseology among the Arabs (Borhaneddin, Enchiridion Studiosi, 8: 36, ed. Caspin, Lips. 1838; Kamus, page 1917; on the contrary, see Pococke, Ad Carmen Tograi, page 71; Talmud Hieros. Berach. chapter 1; Babyl. Sabb. 2:346, fol.; Bochart, Hieroz. 1:634, Lips.). (See Passover).

Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature [12]

Evening [DAY]