dawn · noun /dɔːn/Full view
B2 C or U the early morning when light first appears in the sky
Dictionary examples:

We woke at dawn.

We left as dawn was breaking.

We left at the break of dawn.

Learner example:

The other ones will work from dawn till dusk. (First Certificate in English; B2; Russian)

the dawn of sth
C1 the time when something began
Dictionary example:

the dawn of civilization

Learner example:

Since the dawn of time, people of all religions have considered that there is a higher power that dictates their destiny. (Certificate in Advanced English; C1; Bulgarian)

the crack of dawn
C2 very early in the morning
Dictionary example:

He gets up at the crack of dawn.

Learner example:

From the crack of dawn until bed time citizens have to breathe all kinds of gas coming out of cars, [motor]bikes or [factor]ies. (Certificate of Proficiency in English; C2; Greek)

dawn · verb /dɔːn/
dawn on sb
C2 If a fact dawns on you, you become aware of it after a period of not being aware of it.
Dictionary example:

It finally dawned on him that she’d been joking.

Learner example:

It dawned on him that for whatever the reason he was now alone in the city. (Certificate of Proficiency in English; C2; Spanish)

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