Etymology
Advertisement

spectacle (n.)

mid-14c., "specially prepared or arranged display," from Old French spectacle "sight, spectacle, Roman games" (13c.), from Latin spectaculum "a public show, spectacle, place from which shows are seen," from spectare "to view, watch, behold," frequentative form of specere "to look at" (from PIE root *spek- "to observe").

updated on December 10, 2020

Advertisement
Advertisement
Definitions of spectacle from WordNet

spectacle (n.)
something or someone seen (especially a notable or unusual sight);
the tragic spectacle of cripples trying to escape
spectacle (n.)
an elaborate and remarkable display on a lavish scale;
spectacle (n.)
a blunder that makes you look ridiculous; used in the phrase `make a spectacle of' yourself;
Etymologies are not definitions. From wordnet.princeton.edu, not affiliated with etymonline.