(Latin: tranquility, calmness; peaceful, calm)

Horas non numero nisi serenas. (Latin motto)
Translation: "I count only the hours that are serene."

A 19th century motto which is located on a sundial near Venice by British essayist William Hazlitt.

serenade (s) (noun), serenades (pl)
1. A song used to court somebody, traditionally sung by a man in the evening outside a woman's window, or the performance of such a song: The group of troubadours sang a serenade or a song of love below the queen's balcony at the palace.
2. An instrumental work similar to a sonata, designed for evening outdoor performance by a small ensemble of musicians: Count Rudolfski was famous for the serenades which he composed; especially, the songs of romance that were presented throughout the royal court.
3. Etymology: "musical performance at night in open air"; especially, one given by a lover under the window of his lady; from French sérénade, from Italian serenata, "an evening song".

Literally, "calm sky" from sereno, "the open air"; the noun use of sereno, "clear, calm"; from Latin serenus, "peaceful, calm, serene".

serenade (verb), serenades; serenaded; serenading
To perform a song of love, extolling romance; especially, in an outdoor setting: Much to Maude's amusement, her lover chose to serenade her while he was still sitting on his horse.
serenader (s) (noun), serenaders (pl)
Someone who performs a song in honor of someone; such as, the lady of special interest to the man who is presenting it: The knight hired a troupe of serenaders to go to the home of his beloved, to serenade her with songs of love and romance.
serene (adjective), more serene, most serene
1. Without worry, stress, or disturbance: Barbara's serene face looked worry free, as if she didn't have a care or worry on her mind.
2. Unaffected by disturbance; calm and unruffled: Violet's calm and serene walk through the garden was relaxing and restful.
3. Bright and without clouds: While sailing to Australia, Susan really appreciated the more serene skies that were so clear and beautiful.
serenely (adverb), more serenely, most serenely
1. In a peacefully pleasant manner: The monks walked serenely around the fountain in the garden, in a composed and tranquil outward appearance while the organ music from the chapel could be heard.
2. Calmly; quietly: Mark serenely enjoyed the dazzling sunset after the heavy rain during the day.
sereneness (s) (noun) (no plural)
1. Marked by, or suggestive of, utter peacefulness and undisturbed repose or quietude: There was a sereneness that settled on the farm after the cyclone passed by and things returned to normal.
2. Characterized by the absence of emotional agitation: There was an eerie sense of sereneness filling the city square after the rioters left.
3. A reference to the windless and stormless conditions of the weather: At the cottage, Brad enjoyed the sereneness of the calm summer skies with only puffy clouds overhead.
serenitude (s) (noun), serenitudes (pl)
Relaxed; worry free, without disturbance: The nuns in the religious order projected a serenitude which the visitors admired. Some of the visitors tried to emulate this attitude during their retreat.
serenity (s) (noun), serenities (pl)
1. A mental, or emotional, disposition free from stress or emotion: Marsha practices yoga every day to achieve a state of serenity which helps her face her tough work assignments.
2. A title of honor, respect, or reverence, used in speaking of or to certain members of royalty: We are here to honor her Royal Serenity.

Serenity Prayers

  • God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change.
  • God, give us grace to accept with serenity the things that cannot be changed, courage to change the things that should be changed, and the wisdom to distinguish the one from the other.
  • O God and Heavenly Father,
    Grant to us the serenity of mind to accept that which cannot be changed; the courage to change that which can be changed, and the wisdom to know the one from the other, through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.
  • God grant me the serenity
    To accept the things I cannot change;
    Courage to change the things I can;
    And wisdom to know the difference.
    Living one day at a time;
    Enjoying one moment at a time;
    Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
    Taking, as He did, this sinful world
    As it is, not as I would have it;
    Trusting that He will make all things right
    If I surrender to His Will;
    So that I may be reasonably happy in this life
    And supremely happy with Him
    Forever and ever in the next.
—The last poem is attributed to Reinhold Niebuhr (1892-1971);
an American theologian and adapted in 1941 by
Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), an international organization
to help each other to overcome alcoholism.

Generations of recovering alcoholics, soldiers, weary parents, exploited workers, and just about anyone feeling beaten down by life have found solace in one, or more, of the prayers shown above.

Cross references directly, or indirectly, involving "calm, calmness, peace, quiet": pac-, peac-; plac-; quies-, quiet-.