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Wednesday, 6 March 2013


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Your word for today is: bad eye, n.

bad eyen.
[‘to look upon with a bad eye and variants: to take a dim view of; to look askance at or disapprove of.’]

Pronunciation: Brit. /ˌbad ˈʌɪ/,  U.S. /ˈbæd ˈaɪ/
Etymology: <  bad adj. + eye n.1, after French mauvais œil (1558 or earlier in Middle French in regarder de mauvais œil to disapprove of; 1783 or earlier in sense ‘the evil eye’). Compare evil eye n. at evil adj. 6.
 1.  to look upon with a bad eye and variants: to take a dim view of; to look askance at or disapprove of.
1629  J. Reynolds tr. L. de Marandé Iudgement of Human Actions 286 Doth Fortune regard vs with a bad eye? Will she dart vpon vs the Arrowes of her choler?
1702 Locutions of Lat. Tongue 62 Some have a bad eye to him, especially the Papists, calling him a flatterer of Vespasian's.
1750  tr. Mme de Pompadour Advice to Female Friend 184, I looked with a very bad Eye on those who were suspected of Gallantries.
1759  J. Lauder Decisions Lords of Council & Session 1678–1712 I. 205 Pitmedden and Harcous..were looked upon with a bad eye, because they declared their dissassent [sic].
1903  M. L. Rodkinson tr. New Edition Babylonian Talmud V. v. 211 Each one who looks with a bad eye upon the scholars in this world, his eyes will be filled with smoke in the world to come.
2004 Africa News (Nexis) 11 Oct., After several meetings and announcements all Tutsis were looked at with a bad eye and they started being killed throughout Rwanda.
 2.  colloq.
 a.  A gaze or stare superstitiously believed to cause harm; the magical ability to cause harm in this way. Cf. evil eye n. atevil adj. 6. Now chiefly Caribbean.
1848 Holden's Dollar Mag. Aug. 480/1 Faith, I'm afraid o' my life, some one has left a bad eye on my girl... I know what'll cure her, never fear, if all the fairies in the parish..was takin' her away.
1868 Amer. Phrenol. Jrnl. Dec. 216/1 He [sc. the Brazilian] is superstitious, believes in the ‘bad eye’, in charms, and is a devout worshiper of the Virgin.
1962 Jrnl. Amer. Folklore 75 334 A child gets maljo when a person with a ‘bad eye’ looks at a child and says: ‘Oh, that is a beautiful child.’ The child refuses to eat or drink, cries continually, and ‘pines away’.
1976  J. Campbell Obeah 19 Some people put a silver coin at the bottom of a pot of croton or fern so that ‘bad-eye’ may be cut out and to help the plant to strive.
2002 Eastern Eye 26 July (Specialist Services section), Also can help you against bewitchments, sorcery, cast, bad eye.
 b.  A harsh or unkind expression of the eyes, suggesting a malevolent disposition. Also (freq. in pl.): a threatening or warning glance.
1853  N. Buntline White Cruiser v. 19/1 Don't you go to the city no more, alone, please; that 'ere chap is dangerous, and he's got a bad eye, but I'll spoil it for him the next time he runs afoul of me!
1867  E. Peck Renshawe xxxvii. 357 ‘A most infernal disposition, if one may judge by her eyes.’.. ‘Yes; a very bad eye.’
1905  R. Beach Pardners iv. 113, I cast the bad eye on the boys to wise 'em up.
1949  W. R. Burnett Asphalt Jungle 92 Brannom [was] a big, tough-looking boy with a bad eye on him.
1992 Offshore Sept. 27/3 He answered me with a bad eye, walked off and left me for my neighbour to deal with.
1997  Y. M. Murray Locas 202 Them two started screaming RIFA and shooting crazy as soon as they see C-4 vatos giving them bad eyes.

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