Crosshairs are the wires that are lined up when a shooter is aiming a gun. A hunter might get a moose in her crosshairs before taking a shot.

Crosshairs, also spelled as two words, cross hairs, is another term for a reticle, the series of lines in an optical piece used to bring an image into focus. Binoculars, telescopes, and microscopes all use the same kind of device for focusing as the crosshairs of a rifle or gun. The word crosshairs simply comes from the two lines that intersect in the shape of a cross.

Definitions of crosshairs

n a network of fine lines, dots, cross hairs, or wires in the focal plane of the eyepiece of an optical instrument

graticule, reticle, reticule
Type of:
a system of intersecting lines or channels

n a center of interest

“the war on terrorism has put Saddam Hussein in the crosshairs
Type of:
center, center of attention, centre, centre of attention
the object upon which interest and attention focuses

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