SYNONYMS FOR idealist
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historical usage of idealist
Ideal comes from the Late Latin word ideālis, which means “existing as an idea or archetype.” The earliest recorded use of idealist in English occurs in 1701 in philosopher John Norris’s Essay toward the Theory of the Ideal or Intelligible World, in which he references the Greek philosopher Plato’s “theory of forms.” Plato had posited that everything we perceive is actually a representation of ideal things, but not the things themselves. Idealism gained popularity in various guises in the 18th-century works of philosophers such as Berkeley, Kant, and Hegel.
By the start of the 19th century, the meaning of idealist broadened to describe artists or writers who treated subjects with imagination, in contrast to a naturalist or realist, who depicted a real-world atmosphere in their art. A few decades later, the term was applied to visionaries, and soon after to people who were so imbued with an ideal that they failed to see the world for what it is. Today, the word can be a two-edged sword: if a person calls herself an idealist she very likely means it positively, as in the pursuit of a higher good. However, if somebody else calls her an idealist, that person can mean that she is impractical or naive.
popular references for idealist
—Idealist.org: a job-search website that connects people who want to work or volunteer their services with not-for-profit organizations.
OTHER WORDS FROM idealistan·ti-i·de·al·ist, noun, adjectivehy·per·i·de·al·ist, nounsu·per·i·de·al·ist, noun, adjective
Words nearby idealist
Example sentences from the Web for idealist
Americans, in Ghazvinian’s telling, morph from high-minded idealists to reckless Cold Warriors as the United States plays its own version of the Great Game, manipulating Iran’s politics to its advantage.
He’s one of the idealists, a vendor who considers himself part artist, part entrepreneur.For D.C.’s street vendors, this Inauguration Day was barren of customers — but also a relief|Petula Dvorak|January 20, 2021|Washington Post
Walter presents Gig as a charming idealist so handsome he turns heads on the street.
It’s no crime to be an idealist, as long you’re a realist about your idealism.How to pitch and write an opinion piece for MIT Technology Review|Amy Nordrum|October 15, 2020|MIT Technology Review
Xian Lang was, we learn, once like Mulan, a young idealist who wanted to use her supernatural strength and acumen for the highest of purposes.The history of Mulan, from a 6th-century ballad to the live-action Disney movie|Constance Grady|September 4, 2020|Vox
He was a dreamer, an idealist, grounded in the reality he observed around him.
It is not an idealist, not a romantic call to ethics of conviction as opposed to ethics of responsibility.
He was an “idealist and a realist at the same time,” said his close friend, the British Diplomat Frank Roberts.The Man Who Knew Russia Best: George Kennan’s Revealing Diaries|James A. Warren|March 10, 2014|DAILY BEAST
The hardheaded politician devoted to step-by- step progress was transformed in death into the consummate liberal idealist.How Jackie Kennedy Invented the Camelot Legend After JFK’s Death|James Piereson|November 12, 2013|DAILY BEAST
“It is an ideological—no, not ideological, but I am an idealist still, and I think that I can win,” he said.Prankster or Politician? Jay Stamper Says His S.C. Senate Bid Is Real|David Freedlander|October 29, 2013|DAILY BEAST
I can tell you, my dear idealist—you have not changed a particle, by the way—that there is another side you have never seen.
He was a stubborn idealist, and having found something at last to admire he purposed to hug it.
He was soon at full speed again, on his futile race: a hapless idealist in pursuit of lost dreams.The Daughters of Danaus|Mona Caird
Greater still is he, who is not idealist only, but saint and hero, and in his life bears witness to the truth he teaches.The Life of Mazzini|Bolton King
But whereas as a national poet he was a flattering idealist, he was as a personal poet an uncompromising realist.Frederick Chopin as a Man and Musician|Frederick Niecks