Main definitions of platonic in English

: platonic1Platonic2

platonic1

adjective

  • (of love or friendship) intimate and affectionate but not sexual.

    ‘their relationship is purely platonic’
    ‘platonic love’
    • ‘Modern readers continue to debate whether the poems express platonic friendship or sexual love.’
    • ‘Have you had a platonic friendship that crossed the line and became romantic or sexual?’
    • ‘It is a purely platonic friendship, we are good company for each other.’
    • ‘He has always insisted their friendship was "platonic".’
    • ‘The pair have always insisted their relationship was purely platonic.’
    • ‘Our realtionship started out as platonic but quickly grew into something much more.’
    • ‘She has resigned herself to the fact that their relationship is purely platonic and will never be anything more.’
    • ‘Here are some things to keep in mind when the guy you want to catch under the mistletoe is more into keeping it strictly platonic.’
    • ‘The couple decide to try a live-in relationship, primarily platonic, though the boundaries soon dissipate.’
    • ‘Until now, our relationship has remained completely platonic.’
    • ‘Rossetti had been in love with Jane since 1857, and in the 1870s, in her husband's absence, the pair enjoyed a perhaps not altogether platonic affair.’
    • ‘The relationship is platonic, like a brother-sister relationship.’
    • ‘Familial and platonic relationships are central themes in Greenfield's works.’
    • ‘I've had several lady friends over the years, but our relationships have been platonic.’
    • ‘They do not expect relationships, either sexual or platonic, to last a lifetime.’
    • ‘Thirty previously unseen letters from the writer to the German-born actress and singer reveal an intense and flirtatious but apparently platonic relationship.’
    • ‘The relationship between Bob and Charlotte remains at the film's core, and remains platonic despite strong sexual undercurrents.’
    • ‘The widowed pair found their platonic arrangement suited them both.’
    non-sexual, non-physical, chaste
    View synonyms

Origin

Mid 17th century from Platonic, with reference to a discussion of love in the Symposium by Plato.

Pronunciation

platonic

/pləˈtɒnɪk/

Main definitions of Platonic in English

: platonic1Platonic2

Platonic2

adjective

  • 1Of or associated with the Greek philosopher Plato or his ideas.

    ‘readers of the Platonic dialogues’
    ‘a kind of Platonic ideal of a New York City apartment’
    • ‘An authoritarian response would be to delegate power to a paternalistic dictator, a Platonic philosopher king.’
    • ‘I think that Greek Tragedy and the Platonic dialogues are positively riddled with irony.’
    • ‘Garbo's face, still, white, perfect, like a mask, resembles the timeless Platonic ideal of beauty as it exists in the mind of God.’
    • ‘We might think that we are no better off in understanding Medea after learning of the Stoic - Platonic dispute over the right way to interpret what is going on in her.’
    • ‘Madison shows that Nietzsche directed his critique of Platonic science at the assumption that science represents reality.’
    • ‘Resurrection meant life after life after death, and that was impossible for all Greeks, Homeric or Platonic.’
    • ‘To answer this question, one might begin by contrasting, at least in a crude way, a Humean with a Platonic conception of practical reasoning.’
    • ‘It would not have been difficult for him to find Greek copies of Platonic dialogues at either Carthage or Rome, where he taught for a time.’
    • ‘The Greek, especially the Platonic, tradition saw the soul and body as utterly distinct and separate entities.’
    • ‘The reality of such common objects of experience also earned a philosophical sanction from Platonic idealism.’
    • ‘He also accepted the Platonic distinction between the real and the phenomenal, with which this ideal often was associated.’
    • ‘We stagger round with the Platonic idea (from the Symposium) that we can love only one other person.’
    • ‘My understanding of both Scripture and Platonic philosophy is far too limited to provide a sufficient response.’
    • ‘Otherwise, the picture we get of the Academy is of a centre for discussions, with no indication that students went there to learn Platonic doctrines.’
    • ‘According to Platonic philosophy, mathematics is the proper training for understanding the Universe as it is, as opposed to how it appears.’
    • ‘Philo adopted the Platonic concept of the soul with its tripartite division.’
    • ‘Even in democracies, however, there are fascinating relics of the Platonic image of the guardians.’
    • ‘The novel has no Platonic form, and there is certainly no requirement that writers adhere to a formula or set of rules.’
    • ‘This is the convergence of the real and the abstract, the Platonic ideal and its inferior shadow, matter and energy.’
    • ‘But like many people who spend too long in front of their computers, he's talking about a Platonic ideal rather than the real world.’
    • ‘All this might point to a tacit disappointment with the cinema as we know it and a yearning for the Platonic ideal we dream it capable of.’
  • 2Confined to words, theories, or ideals, and not leading to practical action.

    ‘a Platonic gesture’
    • ‘An eminent diplomatic commentator wrote that the action taken by France in response to atomic tests by South Africa would not be purely platonic.’
    • ‘It would be more useful if our West European partners' position was less platonic and if they made a more energetic and persistent effort to pound it into the Americans.’
    • ‘An anti-capitalist movement must be equal to this, otherwise it will not be effective, unless of course you intend your movement to be merely Platonic.’

Origin

Mid 16th century via Latin from Greek Platōnikos, from Platōn ‘Plato’. See also platonic.

Pronunciation

Platonic

/pləˈtɒnɪk/