catch sight of (someone or something)

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catch sight of (someone or something)

To see someone or something very briefly or suddenly. Wendy only caught sight of the burglar for a second, so she couldn't describe his appearance to the police. I didn't know what the bunny was running from, until I caught sight of the dog that was chasing it.
See also: catch, of, sight
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

catch sight of someone or something

 and catch a glimpse of someone or something
to see someone or something briefly; to get a quick look at someone or something. I caught sight of the plane just before it flew out of sight. Ann caught a glimpse of the robber as he ran out of the bank.
See also: catch, of, sight
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

catch sight of

See suddenly or unexpectedly, as in When I first caught sight of the Alps, I was overwhelmed. [First half of 1800s]
See also: catch, of, sight
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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References in classic literature ?
Scarcely drawing the rein, Blantyre shouted, "Which way?" "To the right!" cried the woman, pointing with her hand, and away we went up the right-hand road; then for a moment we caught sight of her; another bend and she was hidden again.
A child, playing in some weeds, caught sight of her as she neared the quarters.
But all that changed the minute fans caught sight of her wearing a black Isabel Marant playsuit and a pair of black Grenson boots for her first weekend in the I'm A Celebrity jungle.
SEXY star Eva Mendes was set to wear fake breasts for her role in the comedy Stuck On You until the directors caught sight of her ample bosom.
maybe grimacing Brit just caught sight of her unshaven pits Pictures: SPLASHNEWS.COM
We couldn't believe our eyes when we caught sight of her on a Vanderbilt-Tennessee broadcast.