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noun \ˈī\

Simple Definition of eye

  • : the part of the body that you see with

  • : an ability to understand and appreciate something seen

  • —used to describe the way something looks to you

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of eye

  1. 1 a :  a specialized light-sensitive sensory structure of animals that in nearly all vertebrates, most arthropods, and some mollusks is the image-forming organ of sight; especially :  the nearly spherical usually paired hollow organ of sight in vertebrates that is filled with a jellylike material, is lined with a photosensitive retina, and is lodged in a bony orbit in the skull b :  all the visible structures within and surrounding the orbit and including eyelids, eyelashes, and eyebrows c (1) :  the faculty of seeing with eyes (2) :  the faculty of intellectual or aesthetic perception or appreciation <an eye for beauty> (3) :  skill or ability dependent upon eyesight <a batter with a good eye> d :  look, glance <cast an eager eye> e (1) :  an attentive look <kept an eye on his valuables> (2) :  attention, notice <caught his eye> (3) :  close observation :  scrutiny <works under the eye of her boss> <in the public eye> f :  point of view, judgment <beauty is in the eye of the beholder> —often used in plural <an offender in the eyes of the law>

  2. 2 :  something having an appearance suggestive of an eye: as a :  the hole through the head of a needle b :  a usually circular marking (as on a peacock's tail) c :  loop; especially :  a loop or catch to receive a hook d :  an undeveloped bud (as on a potato) e :  an area like a hole in the center of a tropical cyclone marked by only light winds or complete calm with no precipitation f :  the center of a flower especially when differently colored or marked; specifically :  the disk of a composite g (1) :  a triangular piece of beef cut from between the top and bottom of a round (2) :  the chief muscle of a chop (3) :  a compact mass of muscular tissue usually embedded in fat in a rib or loin cut of meat h :  a device (as a photoelectric cell) that functions in a manner analogous to human vision

  3. 3 :  something central :  center <the eye of the problem — Norman Mailer>

  4. 4 :  the direction from which the wind is blowing

eyeless play \ˈī-ləs\ adjective
eyelike play \-ˌlīk\ adjective
an eye for an eye
  1. :  retribution in kind

my eye
  1. —used to express mild disagreement or sometimes surprise <a diamond, my eye! That's glass>

with an eye to also with an eye toward
  1. 1 :  with awareness or contemplation of <with an eye to the future>

  2. 2 :  with the object of <built the house with an eye to adding on later>

Examples of eye in a sentence

  1. Her eyes slowly became accustomed to the dark.

  2. He wears a patch over one eye.

  3. I have something in my eye.

  4. Only a trained eye can tell the difference between the original painting and a good copy.

  5. For decorating, they rely on her discerning eye.

  6. He has an artist's eye for color.

  7. He reviewed the proposal with a jaundiced eye.

  8. The biographer cast a cold eye on the artist's life.

Illustration of eye

Origin of eye

Middle English, from Old English ēage; akin to Old High German ouga eye, Latin oculus, Greek ōps eye, face, Sanskrit akṣi eye

First Known Use: before 12th century




Simple Definition of eye

  • : to watch or look at (someone or something) in a very close or careful way

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of eye

eyedeyeing or eying

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 a (1) :  to fix the eyes on :  look at <they eyed him suspiciously> (2) :  contemplate, consider <eyeing the choices> b :  to watch or study closely <eyeing changes in the stock market>

  3. 2 :  to furnish with an eye

  4. intransitive verb
  5. obsolete :  seem, look

eyer play \ˈī(-ə)r\ noun

Examples of eye in a sentence

  1. I saw someone eyeing me from across the street.

  2. <a lot of his backyard bird watching was spent eyeing the squirrels as they depleted the bird feeder of seeds>

15th Century

First Known Use of eye

15th century

EYE Defined for Kids



noun \ˈī\

Definition of eye for Students

  1. 1 :  the organ of seeing that in vertebrates is a round organ filled with a jellylike material, is located in a bony cavity in the skull, and has a lens which focuses light on the retina

  2. 2 :  the eye along with its surrounding parts (as the eyelids)

  3. 3 :  the colored surface of the iris <He has blue eyes.>

  4. 4 :  the ability to see <I have good eyes.>

  5. 5 :  the ability to recognize or appreciate <He has a good eye for color.>

  6. 6 :  2glance <It caught my eye.>

  7. 7 :  close attention :  watch <Keep an eye on dinner.>

  8. 8 :  judgment 1 <They are guilty in the eyes of the law.>

  9. 9 :  something like or suggesting an eye <the eye of a needle>

  10. 10 :  the center of something <the eye of a hurricane>

eyed \ˈīd\ adjective
eyeless \ˈī-ləs\ adjective

Headscratcher for eye

Eye is the only body part that is spelled the same forwards and backwards.




Definition of eye for Students

eyedeyeing or eying

  1. :  to look at :  watch closely <They eyed the stranger suspiciously.>

Medical Dictionary


noun \ˈī\

Medical Definition of eye

  1. 1:  an organ of sight; especially :  a nearly spherical hollow organ that is lined with a sensitive retina, is lodged in a bony orbit in the skull, is the vertebrate organ of sight, and is normally paired

  2. 2:  all the visible structures within and surrounding the orbit and including eyelids, eyelashes, and eyebrows

  3. 3:  the faculty of seeing with eyes

eyeless \ˈī-ləs\play adjective
eyelike \-ˌlīk\play adjective

Illustration of eye

Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up eye? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a timid, meek, or unassertive person

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