[ red-ahy ]
/ ˈrɛdˌaɪ /


the condition of having bloodshot eyes, as from eyestrain or lack of sleep.
Also red eye, redeye. Informal. a commercial airline flight between two distant points that departs late at night and arrives early in the morning.
an unwanted photographic effect in which a person's iris appears to be red: caused by the reflection of a flashbulb off the blood vessels of the retina.


Also redeye. Informal. of or indicating a long-distance flight that leaves late at night: the red-eye special from New York to Los Angeles.

Nearby words

  1. red-bellied black snake,
  2. red-bellied turtle,
  3. red-billed quelea,
  4. red-blooded,
  5. red-dog,
  6. red-eye gravy,
  7. red-eyed vireo,
  8. red-faced,
  9. red-figure,
  10. red-flag

Origin of red-eye

1965–70, for def 2 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for red-eye

British Dictionary definitions for red-eye



  1. an aeroplane flight leaving late at night or arriving early in the morning
  2. (as modifier)a red-eye flight
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for red-eye



"airplane flight which deprives travelers of sleep," 1968, from the red eyes of sleeplessness; earlier as a noun meaning "raw and inferior whiskey" (1819, American English).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper