anything presented to the sight or view, especially something of a striking or impressive kind: The stars make a fine spectacle tonight.
a public show or display, especially on a large scale: The coronation was a lavish spectacle.
spectacles, eyeglasses, especially with pieces passing over or around the ears for holding them in place.
Often, spectacles.
something resembling spectacles in shape or function.
any of various devices suggesting spectacles, as one attached to a semaphore to display lights or different colors by colored glass.
Obsolete. a spyglass.
make a spectacle of oneself, to call attention to one's unseemly behavior; behave foolishly or badly in public: They tell me I made a spectacle of myself at the party last night.

1300–50; Middle English < Latin spectāculum a sight, spectacle, derivative of spectāre, frequentative of specere to look, regard. See -cle2

spectacleless, adjective
spectaclelike, adjective
superspectacle, noun

1. marvel, wonder, sight, show.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
spectacle (ˈspɛktəkəl)
1.  a public display or performance, esp a showy or ceremonial one
2.  a thing or person seen, esp an unusual or ridiculous one: he makes a spectacle of himself
3.  a strange or interesting object or phenomenon
4.  (modifier) of or relating to spectacles: a spectacle case
[C14: via Old French from Latin spectaculum a show, from spectāre to watch, from specere to look at]

spectacles (ˈspɛktəkəlz)
pl n
1.  Often (informal) shortened to: specs a pair of glasses for correcting defective vision
2.  cricket pair of spectacles a score of 0 in each innings of a match

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

mid-14c., "specially prepared or arranged display," from O.Fr. spectacle, from L. spectaculum "a show, spectacle," from spectare "to view, watch," frequentative form of specere "to look at," from PIE *spek- "to observe" (see scope (1)).

"glass lenses to help a person's sight," early 15c., from pl. of spectacle.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

spectacles spec·ta·cles (spěk'tə-kəlz)
See glass.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Example sentences
The ubiquity of digital spectacles and curiosities today is one reason
  performance art has had its thunder stolen.
The problem with growing these giants is they are spectacles.
Under an electron microscope, bugs balloon into terrifying yet beautiful
Under an electron microscope, however, they balloon into terrifying yet
  beautiful spectacles.
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