Diwali is derived from the Sanskrit fusion word Dīpāvali or Deepavali. It is formed from dīpa (दीप, "light" or "lamp") and āvalī (आवली, "series, line, row"). Dīpāvali or Deepavali thus means a "row of lights" or "series of lights".
Celebration of Diwali includes millions of lights shining on housetops, outside doors and windows, around temples and other buildings in the communities and countries where it is observed.
Diwali (English pronunciation: /dɨˈwɑːliː/) is variously named and spelled/pronounced in diverse languages of India:
- 'deepabali' (Odia: ଦିପାବଲି),
- 'deepaboli' (Bengali: দীপাবলি),
- 'deepavali' (Assamese: দীপাৱলী, Kannada: ದೀಪಾವಳಿ, Malayalam: ദീപാവലി, Tamil: தீபாவளி and Telugu: దీపావళి),
- 'divali' (Gujarati: દિવાળી, Hindi: दिवाली,Marathi: दिवाळी,Konkani: दिवाळी, Punjabi: ਦੀਵਾਲੀ),
- 'diyari' (Sindhi: दियारी), and
- 'tihar' (Nepali: तिहार).