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Lent
Passion season
Dictionaries
Eerdmans Dictionary of the Bible
Lent
LentThe period of preparation prior to Easter, 40 weekdays (six weeks, not counting Sundays; cf. Mark 1:13). Originally a time of fasting for baptismal candidates, it became a time of general penance and abstinence, with increased emphasis on reflection and spiritual renewal.
The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church
Lent
Lent. The fast of 40 days before *Easter. In the first three centuries the period of fasting in preparation for Easter did not, as a rule, exceed two or three days, as is evident from a statement of *Irenaeus recorded by *Eusebius (Hist. Eccl. 5. 24. 12). The first mention of a period of 40 days (τεσσαρακοστή),
Harper’s Bible Dictionary
Lent
LentLent, among Christians originally the period of prebaptismal preparation, later of public penance. Finally it became a forty-day devotional preparation for Easter traditionally based on Jesus’ wilderness fast (Mark 1:13).
The Lutheran Cyclopedia
Lent, Luth. Idea of
Lent, Luth. Idea of. Lent, more properly the Passion season, plays an important part in the Luth. Church Year. Beginning with Ash Wednesday special services are held on Wednesdays, sometimes also on Fridays, at which the Passion history is read and explained and the liturgical services emphasize the
A Catholic Dictionary
Lent
lent. A fast of forty days preceding Easter, kept, after the example of Moses, Elias, and, above all, of Christ Himself, in order to prepare the faithful for the Easter feast, and also of course on account of the general advantages to be derived from a long period of penance. The Greek and Latin names
Compton’s Encyclopedia
Lent
LentIn the Christian church Easter is preceded by a season of prayer, abstinence, and fasting called Lent. In Western churches Lent is 40 days (not counting Sundays), beginning on Ash Wednesday and ending with Easter Sunday. This 40-day fast period is to imitate Jesus Christ’s fasting in the wilderness.
Dictionary of Phrase and Fable
Lent
Lent (Anglo-Saxon, lencten). Lenctentid (spring-tide) was the Saxon name for March, because in this month there is a manifest lengthening of the days. As the chief part of the great fast falls in March, this period of fast received the name of the Lencten-fæsten, or Lent. It is from Ash Wednesday to
Ecclesiastical Dictionary: Containing, in Concise Form, Information upon Ecclesiastical, Biblical, Archæological, and Historical Subjects
Lent
Lent. (Lent derives its name from the Saxon word lencten—lengthening days, or springtime—for it was the spring fast; just as we are indebted to the Saxon word faesten—to restrain—for the word “fast.”) Anciently in the Latin Church, Lent lasted only thirty-six days, and commenced only on the Sunday of
Pocket Dictionary of Church History: Over 300 Terms Clearly and Concisely Defined
Lent
Lent. Traditionally a fast in anticipation of Easter, the practice of keeping Lent began in the second century, although then it lasted for just three days. By the time of the *Council of Nicaea in 325, it was determined to be a forty-day fast in honor of Christ’s forty days in the wilderness. During
Pocket Dictionary of Liturgy & Worship
Lent, Lenten Season
Lent, Lenten season. From Middle English lenten, “spring,” the forty-day period of *fasting and repentance that lasts from *Ash Wednesday into *Holy Week (excepting the six Sundays). These forty days parallel Jesus’ great fast (Mt 4:2), which was a struggle with the devil, as well as the forty-year wandering
Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary
Lent
LENT English word (stemming from an Anglo-Saxon word for “spring” and related to the English word “lengthen”) that refers to the penitential period preceding Easter. Early Christians felt that the magnitude of the Easter celebration called for special preparation. As early as the second century, many
A Dictionary of Early Christian Beliefs: A Reference Guide to More than 700 Topics Discussed by the Early Church Fathers
Lent
LENTLent is the period of fasting that precedes Easter. In the early church, the length of this fast varied from region to region, being anywhere from one day to forty days in length.The [paschal] controversy concerns not only the day, but also as regards the form itself of the fast. For some consider
Key passages
Mt 4:1–2

Then Jesus was led up into the wilderness by the Spirit to be tempted by the devil, and after he had fasted forty days and forty nights, then he was hungry.