apple of one's eye

apple of one's eye

noun
something or someone very precious or dear: His new baby girl was the apple of his eye.

Origin:
orig. in reference to the pupil of one's eye (in OE simply æppel; compare Old High German apful with similar sense); later misunderstood

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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

apple of one's eye definition


The favorite object of a person's love or affection: “Linda was fond of all the horses on the ranch, but the little palomino was the apple of her eye.”

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

apple of one's eye

Special favorite, beloved person or thing, as in The youngest was the apple of his father's eye. This term, which rests on the ancients' idea that the eye's pupil is apple-shaped and that eyes are particularly precious, appears in the Bible (Deuteronomy 32:10). [Early 1600s]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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