A libation is a beverage poured out as an offering to a deity, spirit or beloved dead within a ritual context as a form of communion or to give honor and thanks.
Libations vary by tradition. Alcoholic beverages, milk, honey, water, and oil are all used as libations.
Libations may be poured into a dedicated container such as a libation bowl or patera, onto a sacred object such as an altar or the statue of a deity, or into the Earth.
In modern English vernacular, the word “libation” is often used to mean beverage, particularly an alcoholic one.