One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
Originally: a small telescope for use outdoors (now historical). Later: (in plural and less commonly singular) a hand-held optical instrument for viewing distant objects outdoors and having a lens for each eye, so as to give a stereoscopic view; a pair of binoculars.
Late 18th century. From field + glass.
field glass/ˈfiːld ɡlɑːs//ˈfiːld ɡlas/
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