A word derived from the Latin beau-, meaning “pleasant.” It can be used to describe anything that pleases the senses: the beautiful landscape of Greece or the lovely sunset.
Usually, though not always, it refers to the physical aspect of something; it is often used with other adjectives that emphasize stateliness or symmetry: beautiful landscape; a beautiful woman. It can also refer to something with noble and spiritual qualities, such as a statue of Buddha or a beautiful painting.
Other words that mean pleasing appearance include comely, beautiful, and fair. Comely suggests wholesome or pleasant, while beautiful emphasizes freshness and purity.
The American Heritage(r) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2015) defines the adjective beautiful as “pleasant to the eye or the mind.”
Synonyms: pretty, handsome, lovely, good and excellent
A person’s face is a good indicator of his or her personality. That’s why it’s important to take care of your own.
Some psychologists believe that faces reflect underlying qualities indicative of a person’s quality as a romantic partner and mate. In fact, the face can be a window onto one’s ancestry and genetics.
It can also reflect a person’s general character and health. That’s why it’s so important to exercise and eat healthy foods.
Another reason for beauty’s importance is that it often connects people and objects with communities of appreciation.
A designer’s work, for example, may not be so pretty, but it can still be valuable if it has a strong purpose. According to Alan Moore, a former design and letterpress guru who now focuses on beauty, a sense of purpose is as important to business success as type or color choices.
While a sense of purpose can help businesses attract and retain talent, it’s just as important to create environments that promote positive feelings among employees, thereby increasing productivity and well-being.
Moreover, many designers, like Moore, believe that beauty isn’t just about form: it can be about the way a company is run and how it values people.
That’s why a lot of designers are now focusing on creating environments where beauty can flourish, especially in times of economic crisis and political turmoil. As Moore puts it, “It’s about being generous and positive in the way you treat others and your job.”
But what is beauty?
The idea of beauty dates back to ancient Greek thought, and it’s a concept that’s reflected in modern psychology. For example, psychologists believe that attractive faces can be windows onto a person’s ancestry and health.
A psychologist’s job is to study people and find out what makes them different from others, and this can involve studying their faces. Ultimately, however, it is a matter of personal preference, and that’s why it’s so important to remember that beauty isn’t always skin deep.
For example, a scientist studying grass frogs might think that they are unattractive, but that’s only because the frog isn’t very colorful. But a person who enjoys spending her free time watching nature shows might be very happy with the brown-spotted grass frog she found on her walk.