What Is Beauty?
The term beauty has many definitions. Classical conceptions of beauty define beauty as a principle of harmony and perfect union between the parts. Hedonist conceptions, by contrast, see beauty as the value of parts in relation to the whole. Hedonists define beauty as the quality or attribute that elicits a loving attitude in the observer. And in contemporary terms, beauty is the quality that makes an object desirable, regardless of its function.
The ancient Greeks believed that beauty was both a physical and an aesthetic quality. The most beautiful woman in Greek mythology was Helen of Troy, and Greek architecture is based on symmetry and proportion. Modern-day concepts of beauty are a bit more complicated. They are both related to the notion that a person can be both beautiful and ugly, and can be defined by age, gender, race, and appearance. There are also numerous facets of beauty that define it, including its relationship to physical attributes and personality.
For instance, beauty is often determined by appearance. In Plotinus’ account, beauty is about ‘formedness.’ It is a form, or definite shape, that makes it the kind of thing it is. ‘Form’ means that the object has a definite shape that defines what it is. The same goes for’style’. If a woman’s figure looks beautiful, her skin tone is likely to be attractive.