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[op-tik] /ˈɒp tɪk/
of or relating to the eye or sight.
the eye.
a lens of an optical instrument.
Origin of optic
1535-45; < Medieval Latin opticus < Greek optikós, equivalent to opt(ós) seen (verbid of ópsesthai to see) + -ikos -ic
Related forms
interoptic, adjective
nonoptic, adjective
postoptic, adjective
preoptic, adjective
suboptic, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for optic
  • Although their eyes and optic nerves were functional, the region of their brains involved in visual processing had been damaged.
  • The bullet severed the optic nerve in his right eye before shattering his jaw and then lodging in his neck near his jugular vein.
  • In a good many cases, less than one ounce of this alcohol has caused atrophy of the optic nerve.
  • Fiber-optic cables can transmit more data at a faster pace than other technologies.
  • When he makes a long-distance phone call, his words are transmitted by laser light along a fiber-optic cable.
  • Flexible fiber-optic scopes are typically used to examine or treat ailments of organs such as the throat and colon.
  • But the fly has evolved optic nerves hardwired directly to its wings, so it can still reverse direction before hitting the web.
  • Swim at night in the heated and fiber optic-lighted pool.
  • Two artists want your help constructing a nine-panel fiber optic tapestry.
  • Beneath the concrete lies another traffic conduit: fiber-optic lines made for moving information rather than vehicles.
British Dictionary definitions for optic


of or relating to the eye or vision
a less common word for optical
an informal word for eye1
Word Origin
C16: from Medieval Latin opticus, from Greek optikos, from optos visible, seen; related to ōps eye


(Brit) trademark a device attached to an inverted bottle for dispensing measured quantities of liquid, such as whisky, gin, etc
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
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Word Origin and History for optic

early 15c., from Middle French optique, obtique (c.1300) and directly from Medieval Latin opticus "of sight or seeing," from Greek optikos "of or having to do with sight," from optos "seen, visible," from op-, root of opsesthai "be going to see," related to ops "eye," from PIE *okw- "to see" (see eye (n.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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optic in Medicine

optic op·tic (ŏp'tĭk) or op·ti·cal (ŏp'tĭ-kəl)

  1. Of or relating to the eye or vision.

  2. Of or relating to the science of optics or optical equipment.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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optic in Science
Relating to or involving the eye or vision.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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