In a show, some people with eyesight problems are treated. Blind people see for the first time (see:4:14-4:20) One of the patients who can only see in one eye is talking to the presenter. The presenter asks him:

"Are you excited to be able to see out of both?"

The expression "....see out of both" drew my attention. What I would say would be:

"...to be able to see with both (eyes).... or

"...to be able to see in both (eyes)" (but not ".....out of both eyes")?

I googled both and suprisingly "....out of both eyes" yielded less number of hits, whereas this program is presented by a native speaker.

So, I wanted to ask, would it sound natural if I said "....to see with both eyes." or "....to see in both eyes."

  • 2
    See this Ngram - which yields more or less the result I would have expected. Aug 22, 2023 at 18:08

1 Answer 1


To see is to perceive with your eyes. That could be one eye, or two eyes, depending on various conditions.

"See with both eyes" is more likely to be used in contexts where you are discussing the ability to see with both. For example, if you look though a telescope you can only see "with" one eye, even though you may have sight in two. To see something stereoscopically you must see "with" both.

"See out of both eyes" is more likely to be used in contexts where something may be blocking or preventing normal vision. That could include things that cause blindness such as cataracts. It may not be appropriate if blindness was caused by the loss of an eye - it seems wrong to say one can't see out of an eye they don't have.

"See in both eyes" is not idiomatic at all. You may be getting confused about "to have sight in both eyes", which refers to the ability of sight.

Beware ngrams! Comparing phrases which may be used differently doesn't mean anything except that certain contexts arise more often.

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