[spahy-glas, -glahs]


a small telescope.

Origin of spyglass

First recorded in 1700–10; spy + glass
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for spyglass

Historical Examples of spyglass

  • All days, Christmas or any other, are alike to Sol when there's a dollar to be sighted with a spyglass.

    Thankful's Inheritance

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • "She's a brigantine, Zeb," observed the keeper, handing up the spyglass.

    Keziah Coffin

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • They had a spyglass, and a good-sized dory was ready for launching.

    Keziah Coffin

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • "I'm going to get my spyglass," said one of the under teachers, and ran to do so.

    The Rover Boys in the Air

    Edward Stratemeyer

  • Presently he heard the former order the steward to hand him his spyglass.

    The Rival Crusoes

    W.H.G. Kingston

British Dictionary definitions for spyglass



a small telescope
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 spyglass

also spy-glass, "telescope, field-glass," 1706, from spy (v.) + glass (n.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper