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eagle eye

1. Excellent eyesight, especially for something in particular. I have an eagle eye for spotting wildlife.
2. An ability to discern small details; a keen skill of observation. We need to get Sally's eagle eye on this manuscript because she'll be sure to spot any errors.
3. An attentive gaze. You need to keep an eagle eye on the kids because they will get into everything the minute you turn your back.
4. One who is apt to discern small details or pay close attention to someone or something. Ugh, I got a demerit because some eagle eye saw me with my shirt untucked during yesterday's assembly.
See also: eagle, eye

eagle freak

A derogatory term for an ardent environmentalist. Is anyone surprised that those eagle freaks in my neighborhood have taken up composting?
See also: eagle, freak

legal eagle

An especially clever, aggressive, or skillful attorney. I might be considered something of a legal eagle now, but I had to work for years to get enough experience to build my reputation.
See also: eagle, legal

the day the eagle flies

Payday. The phrase refers to US currency bearing the image of an eagle. Primarily heard in US. Next Friday is the day the eagle flies, so let's go out to dinner then—I'm just broke right now.
See also: eagle, flies

the day the eagle shits

rude slang Payday. The phrase refers to US currency bearing the image of an eagle. Next Friday is the day the eagle shits, so let's go out to dinner then—I'm just broke right now.
See also: eagle, shit

the eagle flies

dated slang Payday has arrived. A reference to the bald eagle that is featured prominently on American currency. Used most often in the US Military. Primarily heard in US. I'll have to wait until the eagle flies to pay these bills. The troops are always eager to venture into town when the eagle flies.
See also: eagle, flies

watch (someone or something) with an eagle eye

To observe very closely, without ever looking away. Like all birds of prey, eagles are known for their excellent vision. You've already been caught once, so you better believe the principal is going to be watching you with an eagle eye from now on. I've been watching that spot with an eagle eye, but still no sign of the leopard.
See also: eagle, eye, watch

eagle eye

acute eyesight; an intently watchful eye. (From the sharp eyesight of the eagle.) The students wrote their essays under the eagle eye of the headmaster. The umpire kept his eagle eye on the tennis match.
See also: eagle, eye

eagle eye

Unusually keen sight; also, keen intellectual vision. For example, Antiques dealers have an eagle eye for valuable objects, or A good manager has an eagle eye for employee errors. [Late 1500s]
See also: eagle, eye

an eagle eye

If someone has an eagle eye, they watch things carefully and are good at noticing things. No antiques shop, market or furniture shop escapes her eagle eye. Phil's played first-class cricket for five years in England under the eagle eye of our umpires. You must watch builders with an eagle eye because some will cheat the minute you turn your back. Note: You can also say that someone keeps an eagle eye on someone or something. Managers of Europe's top clubs are keeping an eagle eye on the World Championships, hoping to snap up new talent. Note: You can also describe someone as eagle-eyed. As the band were passing through security, an eagle-eyed official spotted an 18-inch knife in their luggage. Note: Eagles have very good eyesight, and are able to see small animals or objects from a great height.
See also: eagle, eye

an/somebody’s ˌeagle ˈeye

(informal) if somebody has an eagle eye, they watch things carefully and are good at noticing things: Nothing the staff did escaped the eagle eye of the manager (= he saw everything they did). ▶ ˌeagle-ˈeyed adj.: An eagle-eyed student spotted the mistake.
See also: eagle, eye

day the eagle shits

n. payday. (Military. Usually objectionable.) Tomorrow is the day the eagle shits, and do I ever need it.
See also: eagle, shit


n. a dollar bill. (From the picture of the eagle on the back.) This thing ain’t worth four eagles!

eagle freak

n. someone with strong concerns about the environment and conservation, especially the preservation of the eagle. (A play on eco freak.) The eagle freaks oppose building the dam.
See also: eagle, freak


1. n. a busybody; a person who watches or monitors other people’s actions: a floorwalker, a detective, a hall-monitor. Some old eagle-eye across the street saw me standing in the cold and called my wife who came down and let me in.
2. n. an eye or eyes with very keen vision. Keep your eagle-eye trained on the entrance.


and legal-eagle (ˈliglæˈbiglæ and ˈliglæˈiglæ)
n. a lawyer. I’ve got a legal-beagle who can get me out of this scrape.



when the eagle flies

and day the eagle flies
in. payday. (The eagle is the one found on U.S. currency.) I’ll pay you back when the eagle flies. I’ll find you the day the eagle flies.
See also: eagle, flies

day the eagle flies

See also: eagle, flies


Keen-sighted, either literally or figuratively. Like all birds of prey, eagles of necessity have excellent eyesight, which they need to spot their food supply. Their perspicacity has been transferred to human beings since Roman times. Horace pointed out (Satires, 35 b.c.) that those who are eagle-eyed in spotting others’ faults are blind to their own. “Faith, being eagle-eyed, can . . . see the majestie of God,” wrote Bishop William Barlow in 1601. Later the term was often put as having an eagle eye.
References in periodicals archive ?
'In the long run, we hope to see more eagles flying across their natural habitats, which means that we also have to work hard on increasing and maintaining forest cover.
The 701-hectare protected geothermal reservation surrounding MAGP is home to 39 species of mammals and 165 species of birds, including the Philippine Eagle.
The woman called 911 and used her car to block traffic until help arrived, but the eagle died before it could be taken to a rehabilitation center.
The Eagles were looking to find their footing but Surrey could not be stopped, raining in a number of three-pointers on the Eagles' basket to extend their lead.
The story of Rettig's undertaking in the film runs parallel to Philippine Eagle Foundation, Inc.
Bill Plaschke (Los Angeles Times), Eagles over Patriots, 27-24
The crocodile responded in a flash and nearly succeeded in pulling the fish eagle under the water.
Bald eagles suffered a higher rate of decline than the golden eagle because fish, which is their primary source of food, built up high levels of DDT in their systems.
Bald Eagles (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) are known predators, but records of predation on large mammals are limited and highly seasonal.
Hunting with Eagles in the Realm of the Mongolian Kazakhs
NORTH AMERICA In the United States, golden eagles are federally protected under the Bald Eagle Protection Act of 1962.
all corners one ran the farthest lifted up by the eagles claws
I regularly hear this comment when I speak to people about golden eagles. That's because of the remarkable success of the reintroduction of bald eagles by DEC and other agencies which has made the birds almost common along our waterways.
This amazing bird is the second largest North American bird of prey, holds the record for the weight they are able to carry in their talons and builds the largest tree nest of any species--reaching up to one ton as successive generations of eagles build upon existing nests.