aesthete


aesthete
aesthete, dilettante, connoisseur all designate a person conspicuous for his enjoyment and appreciation of the beautiful, the exquisite, or the choice.
Aesthete implies highly developed sensibilities, with acute delight in beauty of color, line, sound, and texture, and violent distaste for the ugly, shapeless, and discordant
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no woman could walk down the street without risk of having her hat torn off . . . by some aesthete who happened to think it unbecoming— Shaw

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that mystical synthetic sense, of which the modern aesthete dreams, —the sense that sees, hears, tastes, smells, touches, all in one— Babbitt

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It often carries derogatory connotations of absurdity, extravagance, decadence, or effeminacy
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it was perhaps natural for a man who had had to fight his way . . . to a recognized position in scholarly literature to be irritated by the poses of comfortable aesthetesRenwick

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Dilettante stresses the attitude of the lover of art as distinguished from that of the creative artist. Though its application to amateurs who were neither thoroughly familiar with the technique of their particular form of art nor seriously seeking for mastery, it acquired connotations of desultoriness, dabbling, and superficiality
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he is a mere dilettante

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However, it may apply to one who pursues an art or studies it merely for his own delight
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he would always be by nature a contemplative and a dilettante; but he had had high things to contemplate, great things to delight in— Wharton

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a generalization with which I find myself (with all the diffidence of an unlearned dilettante) disagreeing— Huxley

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Connoisseur like dilettante implies high appreciation of the beautiful in art; unlike it, it implies scholarly knowledge and trained taste. Because of the latter implication connoisseur is applied not only to one who knows a work of art when he sees it but also to one who recognizes superiority in other things governed by taste (as foods, wine, or gems). In this relation the word often comes close to epicure in its meaning. It is also applied to collectors of beautiful things
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supposing also that the material of his Apologia was . . . defunct . . . who but a few discerning connoisseurs of style would ever read that book now or a century hence?— T. S. Eliot

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he has found time to make himself a connoisseur of porcelains, one of the most esoteric of collectors’ hobbies— Heiser

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New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • aesthete — (n.) 1878, in vogue 1881, from Gk. aisthetes one who perceives, from stem of aisthanesthai to perceive, to feel (see AESTHETIC (Cf. aesthetic)). I want to be an aesthete, And with the aesthetes stand; A sunflower on my forehead, And a lily in my… …   Etymology dictionary

  • aesthete — [es′thēt΄] n. [Gr aisthētēs, a person who perceives: see AESTHETIC] 1. a person highly sensitive to art and beauty 2. a person who artificially cultivates artistic sensitivity or makes a cult of art and beauty SYN. AESTHETE, although applied to… …   English World dictionary

  • AEsthete — [AE]s thete, n. [Gr. ? one who perceives.] One who makes much or overmuch of [ae]sthetics. [Recent] [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • aesthete — aesthete, aesthetic are spelt with initial ae in BrE and pronounced ees theet and ees thet ik. In AmE they are often spelt esthete and esthetic, and are pronounced es theet and es thet ik …   Modern English usage

  • aesthete — (US also esthete) ► NOUN ▪ a person who is appreciative of art and beauty …   English terms dictionary

  • aesthete — UK [ˈiːsθiːt] / US [ˈesˌθɪt] noun [countable] Word forms aesthete : singular aesthete plural aesthetes someone who loves and understands beauty, art, music etc …   English dictionary

  • aesthete — [[t]i͟ːsθiːt, AM e̱s [/t]] aesthetes N COUNT An aesthete is someone who loves and appreciates works of art and beautiful things. Ant: philistine (in AM, also use esthete) …   English dictionary

  • aesthete — estetas statusas T sritis Kūno kultūra ir sportas apibrėžtis Grožį jaučiantis ir suprantantis žmogus. kilmė gr. aisthētēs – jaučiantis atitikmenys: angl. aesthete vok. Ästhet, m rus. эстет …   Sporto terminų žodynas

  • aesthete — estetas statusas T sritis Kūno kultūra ir sportas apibrėžtis Žmogus, kuris gyvenime vadovaujasi vien tik estetiniais kriterijais arba teikia jiems pirmenybę; estetizmo šalininkas. kilmė gr. aisthētēs – jaučiantis atitikmenys: angl. aesthete vok.… …   Sporto terminų žodynas

  • aesthete — also esthete noun Etymology: back formation from aesthetic Date: 1881 one having or affecting sensitivity to the beautiful especially in art …   New Collegiate Dictionary


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