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Idea vs. Ideal

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Wikipedia
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  • Idea (noun)

    An abstract archetype of a given thing, compared to which real-life examples are seen as imperfect approximations; pure essence, as opposed to actual examples. from 14th c.

  • Idea (noun)

    The conception of someone or something as representing a perfect example; an ideal. 16th-19th c.

  • Idea (noun)

    The form or shape of something; a quintessential aspect or characteristic. 16th-18th c.

  • Idea (noun)

    An image of an object that is formed in the mind or recalled by the memory. from 16th c.

    "The mere idea of you is enough to excite me."

  • Idea (noun)

    More generally, any result of mental activity; a thought, a notion; a way of thinking. from 17th c.

  • Idea (noun)

    A conception in the mind of something to be done; a plan for doing something, an intention. from 17th c.

    "I have an idea of how we might escape."

  • Idea (noun)

    A purposeful aim or goal; intent

    "If you keep sweet-talking her like that, you're going to talk her right out of her pants."

  • Idea (noun)

    A vague or fanciful notion; a feeling or hunch; an impression. from 17th c.

    "He had the wild idea that if he leant forward a little, he might be able to touch the mountain-top."

  • Idea (noun)

    A musical theme or melodic subject. from 18th c.

    Wiktionary
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    • Idea (noun)

      a thought or suggestion as to a possible course of action

      "recently, the idea of linking pay to performance has caught on"

      "it's a good idea to do some research before you go"

    • Idea (noun)

      a mental impression

      "our menu list will give you some idea of how interesting a low-fat diet can be"

    • Idea (noun)

      an opinion or belief

      "nineteenth-century ideas about drinking"

    • Idea (noun)

      the aim or purpose

      "I took a job with the idea of getting some money together"

    • Idea (noun)

      (in Platonic thought) an eternally existing pattern of which individual things in any class are imperfect copies.

    • Idea (noun)

      (in Kantian thought) a concept of pure reason, not empirically based in experience.

    • Ideal (adjective)

      satisfying one's conception of what is perfect; most suitable

      "this is an ideal opportunity to save money"

      "the swimming pool is ideal for a quick dip"

    • Ideal (adjective)

      existing only in the imagination; desirable or perfect but not likely to become a reality

      "in an ideal world, we might have made a different decision"

    • Ideal (adjective)

      representing an abstract or hypothetical optimum

      "mathematical modelling can determine theoretically ideal conditions"

    • Ideal (noun)

      a person or thing regarded as perfect

      "you're my ideal of how a man should be"

    • Ideal (noun)

      a standard or principle to be aimed at

      "tolerance and freedom, the liberal ideals"

    Oxford Dictionary
    • Idea (noun)

      The transcript, image, or picture of a visible object, that is formed by the mind; also, a similar image of any object whatever, whether sensible or spiritual.

    • Idea (noun)

      A general notion, or a conception formed by generalization.

    • Idea (noun)

      Hence: Any object apprehended, conceived, or thought of, by the mind; a notion, conception, or thought; the real object that is conceived or thought of.

    • Idea (noun)

      A belief, option, or doctrine; a characteristic or controlling principle; as, an essential idea; the idea of development.

    • Idea (noun)

      A plan or purpose of action; intention; design.

    • Idea (noun)

      A rational conception; the complete conception of an object when thought of in all its essential elements or constituents; the necessary metaphysical or constituent attributes and relations, when conceived in the abstract.

    • Idea (noun)

      A fiction object or picture created by the imagination; the same when proposed as a pattern to be copied, or a standard to be reached; one of the archetypes or patterns of created things, conceived by the Platonists to have excited objectively from eternity in the mind of the Deity.

    • Ideal (adjective)

      Existing in idea or thought; conceptional; intellectual; mental; as, ideal knowledge.

    • Ideal (adjective)

      Reaching an imaginary standard of excellence; fit for a model; faultless; as, ideal beauty.

    • Ideal (adjective)

      Existing in fancy or imagination only; visionary; unreal.

    • Ideal (adjective)

      Teaching the doctrine of idealism; as, the ideal theory or philosophy.

    • Ideal (adjective)

      Imaginary.

    • Ideal (noun)

      A mental conception regarded as a standard of perfection; a model of excellence, beauty, etc.

    Webster Dictionary
    • Idea (noun)

      the content of cognition; the main thing you are thinking about;

      "it was not a good idea"

      "the thought never entered my mind"

    • Idea (noun)

      a personal view;

      "he has an idea that we don't like him"

    • Idea (noun)

      an approximate calculation of quantity or degree or worth;

      "an estimate of what it would cost"

      "a rough idea how long it would take"

    • Idea (noun)

      your intention; what you intend to do;

      "he had in mind to see his old teacher"

      "the idea of the game is to capture all the pieces"

    • Idea (noun)

      (music) melodic subject of a musical composition;

      "the theme is announced in the first measures"

      "the accompanist picked up the idea and elaborated it"

    • Ideal (noun)

      the idea of something that is perfect; something that one hopes to attain

    • Ideal (noun)

      model of excellence or perfection of a kind; one having no equal

    • Ideal (adjective)

      conforming to an ultimate standard of perfection or excellence; embodying an ideal

    • Ideal (adjective)

      constituting or existing only in the form of an idea or mental image or conception;

      "a poem or essay may be typical of its period in idea or ideal content"

    • Ideal (adjective)

      of or relating to the philosophical doctrine of the reality of ideas

    Princeton's WordNet

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