See also: Eye, ẹyẹ, and ɛyɛ

English

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A human eye, showing iris and pupil behind the transparent cornea
 
Compound eye of a species of fly, showing size gradation of ommatidia from top down. The ocelli are just visible at the top between the compound eyes
 
Eye of a sewing needle with thread passing through
 
The eye of a tropical cyclonic storm shows here as a dark spot in the middle of the white vortex of cloud as seen from a satellite

Pronunciation

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Etymology 1

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From Middle English eye, eie, , eighe, eyghe, yȝe, eyȝe, from Old English ēage (eye), from Proto-West Germanic *augā, from Proto-Germanic *augô (eye) (compare Scots ee, West Frisian each, Dutch oog, German Auge, Danish øje, Norwegian Bokmål øye, Norwegian Nynorsk auga, Swedish öga), from Proto-Indo-European *h₃okʷ-, *h₃ekʷ- (eye; to see).

Other Indo-European cognates include Latin oculus (whence English oculus), Lithuanian akìs, Old Church Slavonic око (oko), Albanian sy, Ancient Greek ὄψ (óps, (poetic) eye; face) and ὄσσε (ósse, eyes), Armenian ակն (akn), Avestan 𐬀𐬱𐬌 (aši, eyes), Sanskrit अक्षि (ákṣi). Related to ogle.

The uncommon plural form eyen is from Middle English eyen, from Old English ēaġan, nominative and accusative plural of ēaġe (eye).

Noun

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eye (plural eyes or (archaic or dialectal) eyen or (archaic) eyne)

  1. An organ through which animals see (perceive surroundings via light).
    Synonyms: see Thesaurus:eye
    Hyponym: ocellus
    Bright lights really hurt my eyes.
  2. The visual sense.
    The car was quite pleasing to the eye, but impractical.
  3. The iris of the eye, being of a specified colour.
    Brown, blue, green, hazel eyes.
    Natalie’s brown eyes looked into Jim’s blue eyes, and the girl and boy flirted.
  4. Attention, notice.
    That dress caught her eye.
  5. The ability to notice what others might miss.
    Synonym: perceptiveness
    He has an eye for talent.
    • 1918, W[illiam] B[abington] Maxwell, chapter XIX, in The Mirror and the Lamp, Indianapolis, Ind.: The Bobbs-Merrill Company, →OCLC:
      Nothing was too small to receive attention, if a supervising eye could suggest improvements likely to conduce to the common welfare. Mr. Gordon Burnage, for instance, personally visited dust-bins and back premises, accompanied by a sort of village bailiff, going his round like a commanding officer doing billets.
  6. A meaningful look or stare.
    She was giving him the eye at the bar.
    When the car cut her off, she gave him the eye.
  7. Short for private eye.
  8. A hole at the blunt end of a needle through which thread is passed.
  9. The oval hole of an axehead through which the axehandle is fitted.
    • 1856 October 18, The People’s Advocate and New South Wales Vindicator, Sydney, N.S.W., page 6, column 1:
      [H]e struck the Duffer a sharp blow on the back of the head with the eye of the axe, and left him stunned and senseless on the earth[.]
  10. A fitting consisting of a loop of metal or other material, suitable for receiving a hook or the passage of a cord or line.
    Hyponyms: eyebolt, eye bolt, eyehook, eye hook, eyelet, screweye, screw eye
  11. A loop forming part of anything, or a hole through anything, to receive a hook, pin, rope, shaft, etc.; for example, at the end of a tie bar in a bridge truss, through a crank, at the end of a rope, or through a millstone.
    Coordinate terms: boss, ear
  12. (US) A burner on a kitchen stove.
  13. The relatively calm and clear centre of a hurricane or other cyclonic storm.
  14. A mark on an animal, such as a butterfly or peacock, resembling a human eye.
  15. The dark spot on a black-eyed pea.
  16. A reproductive bud in a potato.
  17. (informal) The dark brown centre of a black-eyed Susan flower.
  18. That which resembles the eye in relative beauty or importance.
  19. A shade of colour; a tinge.
    • 1664, Robert Boyle, “Experiment XII”, in Experiments and Considerations Touching Colours. [], 2nd edition, London: [] Henry Herringman [], published 1670, →OCLC, part III (Containing Promiscuous Experiments about Colours), page 220:
      Red vvith an Eye of Blevv, makes a Purple; and by theſe ſimple Compoſitions again Compounded among themſelves, the Skilful Painter can produce vvhat kind of Colour he pleaſes, and a great many more than vve have yet Names for.
  20. One of the holes in certain kinds of cheese.
  21. (architecture) The circle in the centre of a volute.
  22. (nautical, in the plural) The foremost part of a ship's bows; the hawseholes.
  23. (typography) The enclosed counter (negative space) of the lower-case letter e.
    • 2022, Hernan Diaz, Trust, Picador (2023):
      The “e” was a bit over-inked, with a blacked-out eye.
  24. (go) An empty point or group of points surrounded by one player's stones.
  25. (usually in the plural) Opinion, view.
    This victory will make us great in the eyes of the world.
Derived terms
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Descendants
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  • Sranan Tongo: ai
Translations
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See also
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Verb

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eye (third-person singular simple present eyes, present participle eyeing or eying, simple past and past participle eyed)

  1. (transitive) To carefully or appraisingly observe (someone or something).
    Synonym: gaze (poetic)
    After eyeing the document for half an hour, she decided not to sign it.
    They went out and eyed the new car one last time before deciding.
    • 1859, Fraser’s Magazine, volume 60, page 671:
      Each downcast monk in silence takes / His place a newmade grave around, / Each one his brother sadly eying.
  2. (intransitive, obsolete) To appear; to look.
  3. (transitive) To remove the reproductive buds from (potatoes).
    • 1996, Food Preparation and Cooking, page 418:
      Once the potatoes have been rumbled they require 'eyeing' with a turning knife or hand peeler.
    • 2012, Bob Vargovcik, Bayonne Boy, page 19:
      My first assignment was eyeing old potatoes. The Siegler brothers would buy potatoes so old they looked like an octopus. My job was to make them look presentable and, of course, sellable.
  4. (transitive) To allow (fish eggs) to develop so that the black eye spots are visible.
    • 1927, Appendix to the Journals of the Senate and Assembly of the Forty-Seventh Session of the Legislature of the State of California:
      Eggs were collected from the Taylor Creek, Upper Truckee River, and Blackwood Creek traps and transported to this station to be eyed []
Derived terms
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Translations
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The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.

Etymology 2

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Noun

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eye (plural eyes)

  1. The name of the Latin-script letter I/i.
    • 2004, Will Rogers, The Stonking Steps, page 170:
      It said, in a whispering, buzzing voice, "Gee-you-ess-ess-ay-dash-em-ee-ar-ar-wye-dash-em-eye-en-gee-oh-dash-pee-eye-pee-dash-pee-ee-ar-ar-wye-dash-pee-eye-en-gee-oh."
    • 2016 CCEB, Communications Instructions Radiotelephone Procedures: ACP125 (G), pages 3–5:
      IED [is spoken] as "eye-ee-dee" instead of "I SPELL India Echo Delta Romeo".
Alternative forms
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Derived terms
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Etymology 3

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Probably from rebracketing of a nye as an eye.

Noun

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eye (plural eyes)

  1. A brood.
    an eye of pheasants

Further reading

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Anagrams

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Middle English

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Etymology 1

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From Old English eġe, from Proto-West Germanic *agi, from Proto-Germanic *agaz, from Proto-Indo-European *h₂égʰos. Doublet of awe.

Alternative forms

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Pronunciation

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Noun

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eye (uncountable)

  1. awe, reverence, worshipfulness
  2. horror, panic
  3. that which creates reverence; the exercise of power
  4. that which incites awe
  5. that which incites terror
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Descendants
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  • English: ey (obsolete)

References

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Etymology 2

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Noun

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eye

  1. Alternative form of eie

Etymology 3

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Noun

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eye

  1. Alternative form of ey (egg)

Nupe

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Etymology 1

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Pronunciation

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Noun

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eyé

  1. eye
  2. face; surface

Etymology 2

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Pronunciation

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Noun

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eyè

  1. nose

Tatar

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Adverb

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eye

  1. very, of course, emphatic adverb

Tetelcingo Nahuatl

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Interjection

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eye

  1. hey!

References

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  • Brewer, Forrest, Brewer, Jean G. (1962) Vocabulario mexicano de Tetelcingo, Morelos: Castellano-mexicano, mexicano-castellano (Serie de vocabularios indígenas Mariano Silva y Aceves; 8)‎[2] (in Spanish), México, D.F.: El Instituto Lingüístico de Verano en coordinación con la Secretaría de Educación Pública a través de la Dirección General de Internados de Enseñanza Primaria y Educación Indígena, published 1971, page 126

Tocharian B

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Etymology

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Ultimately from Proto-Indo-European *h₁éy-ós, nominalized form of *h₁ey- (to go), where the semantics developed along the lines of the animals being herded. For similar etymological and semantic developments, compare Hittite iyant (sheep) and Oscan eítuvam (wealth) (originally meaning livestock, for which semantically compare Latin pecunia).

Noun

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eye ?

  1. sheep, goat

Further reading

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  • Adams, Douglas Q. (2013) “eye”, in A Dictionary of Tocharian B: Revised and Greatly Enlarged (Leiden Studies in Indo-European; 10), Amsterdam, New York: Rodopi, →ISBN, page 98

Umbundu

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Pronoun

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eye

  1. (third-person singular pronoun)

See also

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Yoruba

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Alternative forms

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Etymology 1

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Possibly related to etymology 2, but this is used in slightly more formal settings.

Pronunciation

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Noun

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èye

  1. (Ekiti) mother, mom
    Synonyms: ìyá, ùyá, màmá, mọ́mì, abiyamọ, iye, ìmọ̀mọ́, màámi, ìmọ́ọ̀
  2. a term of familiarity or respect for an older woman, or older female relative, or a priestess
    Synonyms: ìyá, màmá, yèyé
Derived terms
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Etymology 2

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Perhaps related to Edo iye and Yorùbá iye

Pronunciation

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Noun

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èyé

  1. (Ekiti) mother, mom
    Synonyms: ìyá, ùyá, màmá, mọ́mì, abiyamọ, iye, ìmọ̀mọ́, màámi, ìmọ́ọ̀
  2. a term of familiarity or respect for an older woman, or older female relative
    Synonyms: ìyá, màmá, yèyé
Derived terms
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  • èyeèye (grandmother, maternal grandmother)