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The philosophy of Plato, especially insofar as it asserts ideal forms as an absolute and eternal reality of which the phenomena of the world are an imperfect and transitory reflection.

Pla′to·nist n.
Pla′to·nis′tic adj.


1. (Philosophy) the teachings of Plato and his followers, esp the philosophical theory that the meanings of general words are real existing abstract entities (Forms) and that particular objects have properties in common by virtue of their relationship with these Forms. Compare nominalism, conceptualism, intuitionism
2. (Mathematics) the realist doctrine that mathematical entities have real existence and that mathematical truth is independent of human thought
3. (Philosophy) See Neo-Platonism
ˈPlatonist n


(ˈpleɪt nˌɪz əm)

1. the philosophy or doctrines of Plato or his followers.
2. the belief that physical objects are impermanent representations of unchanging Ideas, and that the Ideas alone give true knowledge as they are known by the mind.
3. (sometimes l.c.) the doctrine or practice of platonic love.
Pla′to•nist, n., adj.


the philosophy of Plato and his followers, especially the doctrine that physical objects are imperfect and impermanent representations of unchanging ideas, and that knowledge is the mental apprehension of these ideas or universals. — Platonist, n., adj.Platonistic, adj.
See also: Philosophy
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.Platonism - (philosophy) the philosophical doctrine that abstract concepts exist independent of their names
philosophy - the rational investigation of questions about existence and knowledge and ethics
philosophical doctrine, philosophical theory - a doctrine accepted by adherents to a philosophy


[ˈpleɪtənɪzəm] Nplatonismo m
References in periodicals archive ?
James's Platonic realism is reaffirmed in "The One and The Many", where he compares water to the world of sensible facts, and the air to the world of abstract ideas.
While the work is appropriate for the educated reader seeking to understand the pontiff, it is equally valuable and helpful as a reference for academics seeking to acquaint themselves with the foundational ideas that have served both to form Benedict's thought and galvanize his immense creativity-ideas such as platonic realism and patristic logocentricism, Augustinian anthropology, and Bonaventurian history and eschatology.