idealism

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English[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

First attested 1796, from ideal +‎ -ism.

Noun[edit]

idealism (countable and uncountable, plural idealisms)

  1. The property of a person of having high ideals that are usually unrealizable or at odds with practical life.
  2. The practice or habit of giving or attributing ideal form or character to things; treatment of things in art or literature according to ideal standards or patterns, opposed to realism.
  3. (philosophy) An approach to philosophical enquiry which asserts that direct and immediate knowledge can only be had of ideas or mental pictures.

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