For the modern reader the logion ‘The eye is the lamp of the body’ is puzzling. While most scholars
concur that it has something to do with greed and envy, they often fail to explain this correlation
between inner attitudes and the physical eye. In this article I argue that the meaning of this passage
can only be understood when read according to the ancient understanding of vision. It is important
to interpret the genitive in the phrase Ὁ λύχνος τοῦ σώματός ἐστιν ὁ ὀφθαλμός as the ancient
hearer or reader would have done.