English edit

Etymology edit

From Middle English sterreles, equivalent to star +‎ -less.

Adjective edit

starless (not comparable)

  1. without visible stars.
    • 1667, John Milton, “Book III”, in Paradise Lost. [], London: [] [Samuel Simmons], [], →OCLC; republished as Paradise Lost in Ten Books: [], London: Basil Montagu Pickering [], 1873, →OCLC, lines 422-6:
      A globe far off / It seemed, now seems a boundless continent / Dark, waste, and wild, under the frown of Night / Starless exposed, and ever-threatening storms / Of Chaos blustering round, inclement sky;
    • 1895 May 7, H[erbert] G[eorge] Wells, chapter 11, in The Time Machine: An Invention, New York, N.Y.: Henry Holt and Company, →OCLC:
      The sky was no longer blue. North-eastward it was inky black, and out of the blackness shone brightly and steadily the pale white stars. Overhead it was a deep Indian red and starless, and south-eastward it grew brighter to a glowing scarlet where, cut by the horizon, lay the huge hull of the sun, red and motionless.
    • 1931, Sinclair Lewis, “Ring Around a Rosy”, in I'm a Stranger Here Myself and Other Stories, Dell, published 1962, page 160:
      A searchlight wounded the starless dark.
    • 1940, Robert Hayden, "Sonnet to E.," lines 1-2, in Heart-Shape in the Dust, cited in "Robert Hayden: The Apprenticeship: Heart-Shape in the Dust (1940)", African-American Poets, Volume 1: 1700s—1940s, edited by Harold Bloom, Infobase, 2009, p. 15,
      Beloved, there have been starless times when I / Have longed to join the alien hosts of death,
    • 1962, James Baldwin, Another Country, Dell, published 1985, Book One, Chapter 1, p. 10:
      A hotel's enormous neon name challenged the starless sky.
    • 1992, Toni Morrison, Jazz, New York: Vintage, published 2004, page 35:
      [] there is nothing to beat what the City can make of a nightsky. It can empty itself of surface, and more like the ocean than the ocean itself, go deep, starless.
    The starless night was very dark.

Translations edit