Window on the world

Posted by Bob on June 12, 2005

In Reply to: Window on the world posted by ESC on June 12, 2005

: : A Chilean friend's daughter has an English exam and asked me what the phrase "window on the world" means. Any help would be appreciated.
: : Yours, Leslie

: There was a Window on the World restaurant at the World Trade Center.

: I'm looking for the origin or first use of the expression. No luck so far. Here's what I think: it means a panoramic or eagle's eye view of everything.

: Panoramic = 2 a : an unobstructed or complete view of an area in every direction b : a comprehensive presentation of a subject (Merriam-Webster online).

: Window is from an Old Norse word for "an eye of wind," suggesting a window's function of letting in both air and light. (Encyclopedia of Word and Phrase Origins by Robert Hendrickson (Facts on File, New York, 1997).

Can be used metaphorically, too. BBC News is, to many people, a window to the world.