(redirected from Juvenile Curfews)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Legal.


[O.Fr.,=cover fire], originally a signal, such as the ringing of a bell, to damp the fire, extinguish all lights in the dwelling, and retire for the night. The custom originated as a precaution against fires and was common throughout Europe in the Middle Ages. The curfew has most recently been used in times of turbulence, such as revolution or civil disorders. It is a restrictive measure forcing all persons into their homes to reduce activity against the government or the occupying force. In some communities it has been applied to curb juvenile delinquency.



an emergency measure prohibiting residents of a community to be on the streets during specified times without special permission.

In the USSR a curfew can be established only under martial law. Its purpose is to maintain order and to prevent diversionary, espionage, or other enemy activity against troops, military and civilian bodies of authority, and military and industrial objectives. Special military subunits are assigned to maintain order during a curfew. In capitalist countries a curfew is established by military and civilian authorities not only in wartime but also in peacetime in cases of increased political and economic aggravations in the country and is often accompanied by arbitrary and lawless police action.


1. an official regulation setting restrictions on movement, esp after a specific time at night
2. in medieval Europe
a. the ringing of a bell to prompt people to extinguish fires and lights
b. the time at which the curfew bell was rung
c. the bell itself
References in periodicals archive ?
After originating in Ontario, the juvenile curfew movement leapt the border in the mid 1890s to emerge in the towns of the Midwestern United States.
Mike Davis has uncovered an instance of a juvenile curfew that predated the nationwide movement of the 1890s.
After several months of study and deliberation, the Charlottesville City Council enacted a juvenile curfew on December 16, l996.
While community acceptance remains paramount, a juvenile curfew can succeed only if authorities enforce it in a consistent, fair, and uniform manner.
In his section, "Drafting a Juvenile Curfew Ordinance to Withstand Constitutional Challenges," Hessel reviews recent case law on juvenile curfew ordinances and discusses how recent developments in litigation have affected curfew effectiveness.

Full browser ?