Definition of eye noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE////
    ; NAmE NAmE////
    Natural disasters, Face
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    part of body
  1. 1   [countable] either of the two organs on the face that you see with The suspect has dark hair and green eyes. to close/open your eyes to drop/lower your eyes (= to look down) There were tears in his eyes. I have something in my eye. His eyes narrowed suspiciously. Her eyes widened in horror. to make/avoid eye contact with somebody (= to look/avoid looking at them at the same time as they look at you) All eyes were on him (= everyone was looking at him) as he walked on to the stage. CollocationsPhysical appearance A person may be described as having:Eyes (bright) blue/​green/(dark/​light) brown/​hazel eyes deep-set/​sunken/​bulging/​protruding eyes small/​beady/​sparkling/​twinkling/(informal) shifty eyes piercing/​penetrating/​steely eyes bloodshot/​watery/​puffy eyes bushy/​thick/​dark/​raised/​arched eyebrows long/​dark/​thick/​curly/​false eyelashes/​lashesFace a flat/​bulbous/​pointed/​sharp/​snub nose a straight/​a hooked/​a Roman/(formal) an aquiline nose full/​thick/​thin/​pouty lips dry/​chapped/​cracked lips flushed/​rosy/​red/​ruddy/​pale cheeks soft/​chubby/​sunken cheeks white/​perfect/​crooked/​protruding teeth a large/​high/​broad/​wide/​sloping forehead a strong/​weak/​pointed/​double chin a long/​full/​bushy/​wispy/​goatee beard a long/​thin/​bushy/​droopy/​handlebar/​pencil moustache/ (especially US English) mustacheHair and skin pale/​fair/​olive/​dark/​tanned skin dry/​oily/​smooth/​rough/​leathery/​wrinkled skin a dark/​pale/​light/​sallow/​ruddy/​olive/​swarthy/​clear complexion deep/​fine/​little/​facial wrinkles blonde/​blond/​fair/(light/​dark) brown/(jet-)black/​auburn/​red/(British English) ginger/​grey hair straight/​curly/​wavy/​frizzy/​spiky hair thick/​thin/​fine/​bushy/​thinning hair dyed/​bleached/​soft/​silky/​dry/​greasy/​shiny hair long/​short/​shoulder-length/​cropped hair a bald/​balding/​shaved head a receding hairline a bald patch/​spot a side/​centre/(US English) center (British English) parting/ (North American English) partBody a long/​short/​thick/​slender/(disapproving) scrawny neck broad/​narrow/​sloping/​rounded/​hunched shoulders a bare/​broad/​muscular/​small/​large chest a flat/​swollen/​bulging stomach a small/​tiny/​narrow/​slim/​slender/28-inch waist big/​wide/​narrow/​slim hips a straight/​bent/​arched/​broad/​hairy back thin/​slender/​muscular arms big/​large/​small/​manicured/​calloused/​gloved hands long/​short/​fat/​slender/​delicate/​bony fingers long/​muscular/​hairy/​shapely/(both informal, often disapproving) skinny/​spindly legs muscular/​chubby/(informal, disapproving) flabby thighs big/​little/​small/​dainty/​wide/​narrow/​bare feet a good/​a slim/​a slender/​an hourglass figure be of slim/​medium/​average/​large/​athletic/​stocky build see also black eye, compound eye, lazy eye, shut-eye See related entries: Face
  2. 2-eyed (in adjectives) having the type or number of eyes mentioned a blue-eyed blonde a one-eyed monster More Like This Compound adjectives for physical characteristics -beaked, -bellied, -billed, -blooded, -bodied, -cheeked, -chested, -eared, -eyed, -faced, -fingered, -footed, -haired, -handed, -headed, -hearted, -hipped, -lidded, -limbed, -mouthed, -necked, -nosed, -skinned, -tailed, -throated, -toothedSee worksheet.
  3. ability to see
  4. 3  [singular] the ability to see A surgeon needs a good eye and a steady hand. see also eagle eye
  5. way of seeing
  6. 4[countable, usually singular] a particular way of seeing something He looked at the design with the eye of an engineer. She viewed the findings with a critical eye. To my eye, the windows seem out of proportion.
  7. of needle
  8. 5[countable] the hole in the end of a needle that you put the thread through
  9. on clothes
  10. 6[countable] a small thin piece of metal curved round, that a small hook fits into, used for fastening clothes It fastens with a hook and eye.
  11. of storm
  12. 7[singular] the eye of a/the storm, tornado, hurricane, etc. a calm area at the centre of a storm, etc. See related entries: Natural disasters
  13. on potato
  14. 8[countable] a dark mark on a potato from which another plant will grow
  15. see also bullseye, Catseye™, evil eye, fisheye lens, red-eye
    Word OriginOld English ēage, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch oog and German Auge.Extra examples A movement in the reeds caught my eye. As my eyes accustomed to the darkness, I could make out a shape by the window. Before our very eyes, the bird snatched the fish from the plate and flew off. Could you keep an eye on my bag for a moment? Could you keep an eye on my bag while I go to the toilet? From the moment he set eyes on her he knew that he wanted to marry her. He couldn’t keep his eyes off the girl sitting opposite him. He drew the curtains to make sure no prying eyes saw what he was doing. He held up the newspaper to shield his eyes from the sun. He let his eyes roam around the scene. He looked at me with a twinkle in his eye. He pictured the scene in his mind’s eye. He saw his students with new eyes now that he had a child of his own. He screwed up his eyes against the glare of the sun. He seemed unwilling to meet my eye. He turned his eyes to the door when he heard the handle turning. Her bleary eyes showed that she hadn’t slept. Her eye caught mine. Her eyes danced with amusement. Her eyes dilated with horror at what she had done. Her eyes dropped to her lap as she answered. Her eyes flew open in surprise. Her eyes glazed over when I said I worked in dictionaries. Her eyes prickled with unshed tears. Her eyes squinted against the brightness. Her eyes told me nothing. Her skill at working with wood is coupled to a keen eye for design. His eyes blazed with menace. His eyes bulged in fury. His eyes crinkled up at the corners as he smiled. His eyes darted from face to face. His eyes drifted over to Helen’s chair. His eyes hardened as he remembered how they had laughed at him. His eyes held a mischievous gleam. His eyes never left mine. His eyes reflected his anguish. His eyes rounded in mock amazement. His eyes scanned the room as he entered. His eyes were drawn to a bundle of papers in the corner. His eyes were wide with horror. His narrow eyes betrayed his impatience. I cast my eyes around the room but couldn’t see any familiar faces. I didn’t want to strain my eyes to read, so I put the light on. I knew he was lying because he wouldn’t make eye contact with me. I walked around the store, keeping an eye out for bargains. I want you under my eye. If I hadn’t seen his jump with my own eyes, I would never have believed it possible. In the eyes of the law his knife was an offensive weapon. It fastens with a hook and eye. It is essential to wear some form of eye protection. My eyes followed his every move. My eyes strained to make anything out in the darkness. My eyes stream when I chop onions. My eyes took in every detail as I entered the house for the first time in twenty years. Out of the corner of her eye, she saw Harry start forward. Rapid eye movements frequently accompany dreaming. She averted her eyes from his face. She can do no wrong in his eyes. She could feel the old lady’s eyes bore into her. She just looked at me with those big blue eyes of hers. She laughed, her eyes alight with excitement. She looked her father straight in the eye and answered his question truthfully. She reached up and tried to gouge her attacker’s eyes. She responded softly, her eyes showing concern. She rolled her eyes heavenward when she saw what her husband was wearing. She rolled her eyes in disgust. She tried the door, her eyes rolling in panic. She tried to sit up, her eyes fixed on Jean’s face. Skiers wear goggles to protect their eyes from the sun. The children’s eagle eyes spotted an ice-cream seller half a mile away. The doctor gave me eye drops to put in three times a day. The dog’s hungry eyes were on my sandwich. The government is keeping a close eye on the economy. The planet should be visible to the naked eye. The series has plenty of eye candy. The store detective had his eye on a group of boys who were acting suspiciously. The sun was in my eyes and I couldn’t see the road. The team went through their paces under their trainer’s critical eye. The tide was out, leaving nothing but mud as far as the eye could see. Their eyes locked together in a battle of wills. There were tears in his eyes as he spoke. Tina squeezed her eyes shut and bit her lip. To an expert eye, the painting is an obvious fake. To my eye, the windows seem out of proportion. Tom fell in love the moment he laid eyes on her. You need to look at your website through the user’s eyes. Your computer screen should be at eye level so that you can work with your neck straight.Idioms
    the apple of somebody’s eye
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    a person or thing that is loved more than any other She is the apple of her father's eye.
    as far as the eye can/could see
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    to the horizon (= where the sky meets the land or sea) The bleak moorland stretched on all sides as far as the eye could see.
    bat your eyes/eyelashes
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    to open and close your eyes quickly, in a way that is supposed to be attractive
    to be watching somebody/something carefully and with a lot of interest The kids were all eyes as he slowly unwrapped the package.
    beauty is in the eye of the beholder
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    (saying) people all have different ideas about what is beautiful
    before/in front of somebody’s (very) eyes
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    in somebody’s presence; in front of somebody He had seen his life's work destroyed before his very eyes.
    be up to your eyes in something
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    to have a lot of something to deal with We're up to our eyes in work.
    a bird’s-eye view (of something)
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    a view of something from a high position looking down From the plane we had a bird’s eye view of Manhattan.
    cast/run an eye/your eyes over something
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    to look at or examine something quickly Could you just run your eyes over this report?
    to attract somebody’s attention Can you catch the waiter's eye?
    clap/lay/set eyes on somebody/something
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    (informal) (usually used in negative sentences) to see somebody/something I haven't clapped eyes on them for weeks. I hope I never set eyes on this place again!
    cock an ear/eye at something/somebody
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    to look at or listen to something/somebody carefully and with a lot of attention
    (informal) pleasant to listen to or look at The room was painted in soft pastels that were easy on the eye. (old-fashioned, informal) used to show that you do not believe somebody/something ‘It's an antique.’ ‘An antique, my eye!’
    an eye for an eye (and a tooth for a tooth)
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    (saying) used to say that you should punish somebody by doing to them what they have done to you or to somebody else They advocate a justice system that works on the principle of an eye for an eye.
    somebody’s eyes are bigger than their stomach
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    used to say that somebody has been greedy by taking more food than they can eat
    feast your eyes (on somebody/something)
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    to look at somebody/something and get great pleasure
    for somebody’s eyes only
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    to be seen only by a particular person I'll lend you the letters but they're for your eyes only.
    (British English) (in ball games) to practise so that you are able to judge more clearly how fast and where the ball is going
    have an eye for something
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    to be able to judge if things look attractive, valuable, etc. I've never had much of an eye for fashion. She has an eye for a bargain.
      have your eye on somebody
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    1. 1  to be watching somebody carefully, especially to check that they do not do anything wrong And remember, I'll have my eye on you so you'd better behave.
    2. 2to be thinking about asking somebody out, offering somebody a job, etc. because you think they are attractive, good at their job, etc. He's got his eye on the new girl in your class.
    have your eye on something
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    to be thinking about buying something
    have eyes in the back of your head
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    to be aware of everything that is happening around you, even things that seem difficult or impossible to see You can’t get away with anything in her class. She has eyes in the back of her head.
    have (got) eyes like a hawk
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    to be able to notice or see everything She's bound to notice that chipped glass. The woman has eyes like a hawk!
    have one eye/half an eye on something
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    to look at or watch something while doing something else, especially in a secret way so that other people do not notice During his talk, most of the delegates had one eye on the clock.
    (old-fashioned) to always be looking for the chance to have a new sexual relationship
    hit somebody (straight/right) in the eye
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    to be very obvious to somebody
    very quickly; in a short time
    in somebody’s eyes (British English also to somebody’s eyes)
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    in somebody’s opinion or according to the way that they see the situation She can do no wrong in her father's eyes. To Western eyes, it may seem that the city is overcrowded.
    in the eyes of the law, world, etc.
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    according to the law, most people in the world, etc. In the eyes of the law she is guilty though few ordinary people would think so.
    well known to many people through newspapers and television She doesn't want her children growing up in the public eye.
    in the twinkling of an eye
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    very quickly synonym instant (1) Suddenly, in the twinkling of an eye, her whole life had been turned upside down.
    keep a close eye/watch on somebody/something
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    to watch somebody/something carefully Over the next few months we will keep a close eye on sales.
    keep your ears/eyes open (for something)
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    to be quick to notice or hear things
    keep an eye on somebody/something
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     to take care of somebody/something and make sure that they are not harmed, damaged, etc. We've asked the neighbours to keep an eye on the house for us while we are away.
    keep your eye on the ball
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    to continue to give your attention to what is most important
    keep an eye open/out (for somebody/something)
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    to look for somebody/something while you are doing other things Police have asked residents to keep an eye out for anything suspicious.
    keep your eyes peeled/skinned (for somebody/something)
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    to look carefully for somebody/something We kept our eyes peeled for any signs of life.
    keep a weather eye on somebody/something
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    to watch somebody/something carefully in case you need to take action Keep a weather eye on your competitors.
    look somebody in the eye(s)/face
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    (usually used in negative sentences and questions) to look straight at somebody without feeling embarrassed or ashamed Can you look me in the eye and tell me you're not lying? I'll never be able to look her in the face again!
    make eyes at somebody, give somebody the eye
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    to look at somebody in a way that shows that you find them sexually attractive He's definitely giving you the eye!
      meet somebody’s eye(s), meet somebody’s gaze, look, etc., people’s eyes meet
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    1. 1[transitive, intransitive] if you meet somebody’s eye(s), you look directly at them as they look at you; if two people’s eyes meet, they look directly at each other She was afraid to meet my eye. Their eyes met across the crowded room. She met his gaze without flinching.
    2. 2[transitive] meet somebody’s eye(s) your eyes if a sight meets your eyes, you see it A terrible sight met their eyes.
    your imagination He pictured the scene in his mind's eye. the normal power of your eyes without the help of an instrument The planet should be visible with/to the naked eye.
    not bat an eyelid (British English) (North American English not bat an eye)
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    (informal) to show no surprise or embarrassment when something unusual happens She didn't bat an eyelid when I told her my news.
    not believe your ears/eyes
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    (informal) to be very surprised at something you hear/see I couldn't believe my eyes when she walked in.
    not a dry eye in the house
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    (humorous) used to say that everyone was very emotional about something There wasn't a dry eye in the house when they announced their engagement.
    not see eye to eye with somebody (on something)
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    to not share the same views as somebody about something The two of them have never seen eye to eye on politics.
    not (be able to) take your eyes off somebody/something
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    to find somebody/something so interesting, attractive, etc. that you watch them all the time
    one in the eye (for somebody/something)
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    (informal) a result, action, etc. that represents a defeat or disappointment for somebody/something The appointment of a woman was one in the eye for male domination.
    only have eyes for/have eyes only for somebody
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    to be in love with only one particular person He's only ever had eyes for his wife.
    open your/somebody’s eyes (to something)
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    to realize or make somebody realize the truth about something Travelling really opens your eyes to other cultures.
    to be very attractive to look at
    pull the wool over somebody’s eyes
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    (informal) to try to trick somebody; to hide your real actions or intentions from somebody
    see, look at, etc. something through somebody’s eyes
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    to think about or see something the way that another person sees it Try looking at it through her eyes for a change. Events are seen through the eyes of a Polish refugee.
    see something out of the corner of your eye
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    to see something by accident or not very clearly because you see it from the side of your eye and are not looking straight at it Out of the corner of her eye, she saw him coming closer.
    shut/close your eyes to something
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     to pretend that you have not noticed something so that you do not have to deal with it You can't just close your eyes to his violence. They seem intent on shutting their eyes to the problems of pollution.
    (informal) a person or thing that you are pleased to see; something that is very pleasant to look at
    take your eye off the ball
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    to stop giving your attention to what is most important
    there is more to somebody/something than meets the eye
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    a person or thing is more complicated or interesting than you might think at first
    turn a blind eye (to something)
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    to pretend not to notice something bad that is happening, so you do not have to do anything about it The authorities were either unaware of the problem or they turned a blind eye to it.
    under the (watchful) eye of somebody
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    being watched carefully by somebody The children played under the watchful eye of their father.
    what the eye doesn’t see (the heart doesn’t grieve over)
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    (saying) if a person does not know about something that they would normally disapprove of, then it cannot hurt them What does it matter if I use his flat while he’s away? What the eye doesn’t see…!
    with an eye for/on/to the main chance
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    (British English, usually disapproving) with the hope of using a particular situation in order to gain some advantage for yourself
    fully aware of the possible problems or results of a particular course of action I went into this with my eyes open so I guess I only have myself to blame.
    with your eyes shut/closed
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    having enough experience to be able to do something easily I've made this trip so often, I could do it with my eyes shut.
    with an eye to something/to doing something
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    with the intention of doing something He bought the warehouse with an eye to converting it into a hotel.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: eye