Word of the Day

Thursday, September 28, 2006


\ES-theet\ , noun;
One having or affecting great sensitivity to beauty, as in art or nature.
Beijing, with its stolid, square buildings and wide, straight roads, feels like the plan of a first-year engineering student, while Shanghai's decorative architecture and snaking, narrow roads feel like the plan of an aesthete.
-- "Sky's the Limit in Shanghai", Los Angeles Times, April 25, 1999
But he was also an aesthete with a connoisseur's eye for the wild modernist innovations with letterforms and layout of the 1920s.
-- Rick Poynor, "Herbert Spencer", The Guardian, March 15, 2002
Where the standard Oxford aesthete of the 1920s had been showily dissipated, full of wild talk about decadence and beauty, Auden was preaching a new gospel of icy austerity and self-control.
-- Ian Hamilton, Against Oblivion
Aesthete is from Greek aisthetes, "one who perceives," from aisthanesthai, "to perceive."
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