“Throughout history, we have been preoccupied with the eyes and their effect on human behavior. Eye contact regulates conversation, gives cues of dominance, ‘He looked down his nose at me’ or forms the basis for suspecting a liar, ‘Look me in the eye when you say that!’ We spend much of our face-to-face time looking at the other person’s face, so eye signals are a vital part of being able to read a person’s attitude and thoughts. When people meet for the first time they make a series of quick judgements about each other, based largely on what they see.
We use phrases such as ‘She looked daggers at him’, ‘He had that gleam in his eye’, ‘She has big baby eyes’, ‘He has shifty eyes’, ‘She has inviting eyes’, ‘She gave him a look to kill’, ‘She gave an icy stare’ or ‘He gave me the evil eye’. We also say a person has Bette Davis eyes, Spanish eyes, bedroom eyes, hard, angry, blank, private, sad, happy, defiant, cold, jealous, unforgiving and piercing eyes. When we use these phrases we are unwittingly referring to the size of the person’s pupils and to his gaze behavior. The eyes can be the most revealing and accurate of all human communication signals because they are a focal point on the body and the pupils work independently of conscious control.”
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