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The feast, observed on March 25, commemorating the announcement of the Incarnation by the angel Gabriel to the Virgin Mary. There are references to the feast as early as the fifth century. Its date was finally determined by the date of Christmas on December 25. It is considered a feast of the Blessed Virgin and, in the revised liturgy, is a solemnity. (Etym. Latin annuntiatio, an announcing, announcement.)
All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.