Definition of gaze in English:



  • no object, with adverbial of direction Look steadily and intently, especially in admiration, surprise, or thought.

    ‘he could only gaze at her in astonishment’
    • ‘I took my chair to the open corridor and sat there with my book, gazing at the sunset.’
    • ‘He gazed steadily at her with a calm and regal expression, his eyes shining softly.’
    • ‘But after half a dozen of these, the audience were gazing at the stage in confusion.’
    • ‘Strangely, all the people standing around me on Tuesday were gazing in wonder.’
    • ‘A wolf stood at the rim of the hollow, gazing at them intently with golden eyes.’
    • ‘We try to ignore it while gazing at the sky, talking of loves lost and spotting slowly gliding aeroplanes.’
    • ‘We stood there gazing at it, and agreed that it was very beautiful indeed.’
    • ‘Her eyes were still open and sad, and I thought they were gazing at me from far away.’
    • ‘The boy didn't look up but instead kept on gazing intently at the boring grey material of the driver's seat.’
    • ‘I sat for a fairly long while, gazing out of the window, got bored with that, and went to pull out a few books of poetry.’
    • ‘It was difficult to focus her eyes, but she saw that he was gazing intently into them.’
    • ‘In fact, I stopped a couple of times, just standing, head raised, gazing at the sky.’
    • ‘People milled around, gazing out to sea and watching the waves lapping at the jetty in silent worship.’
    • ‘He was gazing at me through squinting grey eyes, rather than deep brown orbs.’
    • ‘I seem to spend a little time each evening in this lovely summer weather gazing out of my study window.’
    • ‘I was gazing at the Ordnance Survey map for the Ripon area and today's route just leapt off the page.’
    • ‘Should I avoid mirrors, or spend more time gazing in the hope of reconciliation?’
    • ‘I had a book with me, but most of the time I spent gazing out of the window, watching California pass by.’
    • ‘She goes upstairs to the final room, peering in, gazing upon a closet that is taped shut.’
    • ‘Imagine her look of horror upon entering the flat as she spins, gazing in horror at shelf after shelf of tiny toy cars.’
    stare, look fixedly, look vacantly, look, take a good look, gape, goggle, peer, leer
    View synonyms


  • 1A steady intent look.

    ‘he turned, following her gaze’
    ‘offices screened from the public gaze’
    • ‘The same eyes were looking at me, almost burning me with their intent gaze.’
    • ‘Only a fortnight ago, they were in a farmhouse on the city outskirts away from the gaze of the public.’
    • ‘When I walk up to the back of a crowd of people his eyes shift to mine and his gaze is steady.’
    • ‘However this trade still continues away from the public gaze or under another name.’
    • ‘Their eyes met for a long moment, both gazes calm and steady.’
    • ‘Blinded by the sight I tried hard not to stare and fixed my gaze on something out of the window.’
    • ‘The settlement would be reached somewhere away from the public gaze and media glare.’
    • ‘He just looked at our teacher for a moment, and then held a steady gaze out the window.’
    • ‘The young man followed my gaze then looked at me for a minute as if trying to make up his mind.’
    • ‘The three boys followed her with their gazes, not looking away until she disappeared from their line of vision as she turned another corner.’
    • ‘Following our gazes, he looked at it too and shrugged indifferently.’
    • ‘The sequence is silent and directs viewers' attention to the intent gazes of museum-goers and the degrees of engagement or distraction.’
    • ‘Meanwhile, Luke and I avert our gazes, looking with studied interest at the fascinating ads above the tube map, opposite.’
    • ‘The gaze is steady and there is both a reserve and a frank regard in her eyes.’
    • ‘More sweat fell down his stubby chin as he tried to avert his eyes away from her steady gaze.’
    • ‘When it is forced into the public gaze, we react in a way that shames us.’
    • ‘The building site at La Scala had been hidden from the public gaze since the renovation work began in January.’
    • ‘I followed his gaze to look at a booth with basketball hoops and balls.’
    • ‘I raised my eyebrows at him but he met me with a steady, unperturbed gaze.’
    • ‘Lately, her steady deep-grey gaze has been held by a new bird feeder in her garden.’
    stare, fixed look, intent look, gape, eye
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 (in literary theory) a particular perspective considered as embodying certain aspects of the relationship between observer and observed.
      ‘the male gaze’
      • ‘His blindness ensures that she does not, once again, become the object of the male gaze.’
      • ‘There seems to be a female gaze that is pretty much like the male gaze, if you ask me.’
      • ‘They do not avert their eye coyly or present a subordinate sex symbol image that invites the male gaze.’
      • ‘Being a straight man in gay circles taught him something about what it feels like to be on the other end of the male gaze.’
      • ‘As a first step, I closely examine the passage, its narrative strategies and the gaze, or rather gazes, that inform it.’


Late Middle English: perhaps related to obsolete gaw (see gawk).