Let's Compare Abstract and Esoteric


Abstract may refer to:

abstract adj 1: existing only in the mind; separated from embodiment; "abstract words like `truth' and `justice'" [ant: {concrete}] 2: not representing or imitating external reality or the objects of nature; "a large abstract painting" [syn: {abstractionist}, {nonfigurative}, {nonobjective}] 3: based on specialized theory; "a theoretical analysis" [syn: {theoretical}] 4: dealing with a subject in the abstract without practical purpose or intention; "abstract reasoning"; "abstract science" n 1: a concept or idea not associated with any specific instance; "he loved her only in the abstract--not in person" [syn: {abstraction}] 2: a sketchy summary of the main points of an argument or theory [syn: {outline}, {synopsis}, {precis}] v 1: consider a concept without thinking of a specific example; consider abstractly or theoretically 2: make off with belongings of others [syn: {pilfer}, {cabbage}, {purloin}, {pinch}, {snarf}, {swipe}, {hook}, {sneak}, {filch}, {nobble}, {lift}] 3: consider apart from a particular case or instance; "Let's abstract away from this particular example" 4: give an abstract (of)

Abstract \Ab"stract`\, n. [See {Abstract}, a.] 1. That which comprises or concentrates in itself the essential qualities of a larger thing or of several things. Specifically: A summary or an epitome, as of a treatise or book, or of a statement; a brief. [1913 Webster] An abstract of every treatise he had read. --Watts. [1913 Webster] Man, the abstract Of all perfection, which the workmanship Of Heaven hath modeled. --Ford. [1913 Webster] 2. A state of separation from other things; as, to consider a subject in the abstract, or apart from other associated things. [1913 Webster] 3. An abstract term. [1913 Webster] The concretes ``father'' and ``son'' have, or might have, the abstracts ``paternity'' and ``filiety.'' --J. S. Mill. [1913 Webster] 4. (Med.) A powdered solid extract of a vegetable substance mixed with sugar of milk in such proportion that one part of the abstract represents two parts of the original substance. [1913 Webster] {Abstract of title} (Law), an epitome of the evidences of ownership. [1913 Webster] Syn: Abridgment; compendium; epitome; synopsis. See {Abridgment}. [1913 Webster]

Abstract \Ab*stract"\, v. t. To perform the process of abstraction. [R.] [1913 Webster] I own myself able to abstract in one sense. --Berkeley. [1913 Webster]

Abstract \Ab*stract"\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Abstracted}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Abstracting}.] [See {Abstract}, a.] [1913 Webster] 1. To withdraw; to separate; to take away. [1913 Webster] He was incapable of forming any opinion or resolution abstracted from his own prejudices. --Sir W. Scott. [1913 Webster] 2. To draw off in respect to interest or attention; as, his was wholly abstracted by other objects. [1913 Webster] The young stranger had been abstracted and silent. --Blackw. Mag. [1913 Webster] 3. To separate, as ideas, by the operation of the mind; to consider by itself; to contemplate separately, as a quality or attribute. --Whately. [1913 Webster] 4. To epitomize; to abridge. --Franklin. [1913 Webster] 5. To take secretly or dishonestly; to purloin; as, to abstract goods from a parcel, or money from a till. [1913 Webster] Von Rosen had quietly abstracted the bearing-reins from the harness. --W. Black. [1913 Webster] 6. (Chem.) To separate, as the more volatile or soluble parts of a substance, by distillation or other chemical processes. In this sense extract is now more generally used. [1913 Webster]

Abstract \Ab"stract`\ (#; 277), a. [L. abstractus, p. p. of abstrahere to draw from, separate; ab, abs + trahere to draw. See {Trace}.] 1. Withdraw; separate. [Obs.] [1913 Webster] The more abstract . . . we are from the body. --Norris. [1913 Webster] 2. Considered apart from any application to a particular object; separated from matter; existing in the mind only; as, abstract truth, abstract numbers. Hence: ideal; abstruse; difficult. [1913 Webster] 3. (Logic) (a) Expressing a particular property of an object viewed apart from the other properties which constitute it; -- opposed to {concrete}; as, honesty is an abstract word. --J. S. Mill. (b) Resulting from the mental faculty of abstraction; general as opposed to particular; as, ``reptile'' is an abstract or general name. --Locke. [1913 Webster] A concrete name is a name which stands for a thing; an abstract name which stands for an attribute of a thing. A practice has grown up in more modern times, which, if not introduced by Locke, has gained currency from his example, of applying the expression ``abstract name'' to all names which are the result of abstraction and generalization, and consequently to all general names, instead of confining it to the names of attributes. --J. S. Mill. [1913 Webster] 4. Abstracted; absent in mind. ``Abstract, as in a trance.'' --Milton. [1913 Webster] {An abstract idea} (Metaph.), an idea separated from a complex object, or from other ideas which naturally accompany it; as the solidity of marble when contemplated apart from its color or figure. {Abstract terms}, those which express abstract ideas, as beauty, whiteness, roundness, without regarding any object in which they exist; or abstract terms are the names of orders, genera or species of things, in which there is a combination of similar qualities. {Abstract numbers} (Math.), numbers used without application to things, as 6, 8, 10; but when applied to any thing, as 6 feet, 10 men, they become concrete. {Abstract mathematics} or {Pure mathematics}. See {Mathematics}. [1913 Webster]


Western esotericism (also called esotericism and esoterism) is a scholarly term for a wide range of loosely related ideas and movements which have developed within Western society.

esoteric adj : confined to and understandable by only an enlightened inner circle; "a compilation of esoteric philosophical theories" [ant: {exoteric}]

Esoteric \Es`o*ter"ic\ ([e^]s`[-o]*t[e^]"[i^]k), a. [Gr. 'eswteriko`s, fr. 'esw`teros inner, interior, comp. fr. 'e`sw in, within, fr. 'es, e'is, into, fr. 'en in. See {In}.] 1. Designed for, and understood by, the specially initiated alone; not communicated, or not intelligible, to the general body of followers; private; interior; acroamatic; -- said of discussions of technical topics and of the private and more recondite instructions and doctrines of philosophers. Opposed to {exoteric}. [1913 Webster] Enough if every age produce two or three critics of this esoteric class, with here and there a reader to understand them. --De Quincey. [1913 Webster] 2. Marked by secrecy or privacy; private; select; confidential; as, an esoteric purpose; an esoteric meeting. [Webster 1913 Suppl.]

Esoteric \Es`o*ter"ic\, n. (Philos.) (a) An esoteric doctrine or treatise; esoteric philosophy; esoterics. (b) One who believes, or is an initiate, in esoteric doctrines or rites. [Webster 1913 Suppl.]

ESOTERIC, adj. Very particularly abstruse and consummately occult. The ancient philosophies were of two kinds, -- _exoteric_, those that the philosophers themselves could partly understand, and _esoteric_, those that nobody could understand. It is the latter that have most profoundly affected modern thought and found greatest acceptance in our time.

Data Sources:

  • abstract: WordNet (r) 2.0
  • abstract: The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.44
  • abstract: The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.44
  • abstract: The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.44
  • abstract: The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.44
  • esoteric: WordNet (r) 2.0
  • esoteric: The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.44
  • esoteric: The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.44
  • esoteric: THE DEVIL'S DICTIONARY ((C)1911 Released April 15 1993)

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Your Comparisons - Abstract And Esoteric