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Definition of art in English from the Oxford dictionary

1 – [mass noun] The expression or application of human creative skill and imagination, typically in a visual form such as painting or sculpture, producing works to be appreciated primarily for their beauty or emotional power: the art of the Renaissance great art is concerned with moral imperfections she studied art in Paris

1.1 – Works produced by human creative skill and imagination: his collection of modern art [as modifier]: an art critic

1.2 – Creative activity resulting in the production of paintings, drawings, or sculpture: she’s good at art

2  – (the arts) The various branches of creative activity, such as painting, music, literature, and dance: the visual arts [in singular]: the art of photography

3  – (arts) Subjects of study primarily concerned with human creativity and social life, such as languages, literature, and history (as contrasted with scientific or technical subjects): the belief that the arts and sciences were incompatible the Faculty of Arts

4 – A skill at doing a specified thing, typically one acquired through practice: the art of conversation

Phrases

art for art’s sake

1 – Used to convey the idea that the chief or only aim of a work of art is the self-expression of the individual artist who creates it.

Example sentences

  • Ruskin’s pre-Raphaelitism, for example, which stressed the moral purpose of art, contrasted Pater’s aestheticism, which promoted the idea of art for art’s sake.
  • English cultural commentators have recently speculated that this hostility is more widespread, and that there is a deep historical and cultural resistance to the very idea of art for art’s sake in Scotland.
  • It’s an odd looking movie that embraces the idea of art for art’s sake.
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art is long, life is short

2 – proverb There is so much knowledge to acquire that a lifetime is not sufficient.

Example sentences

  • Goethe said that art is long, life is short.
  • They can be summed up in such Latin expressions as: ars longa, vita brevis (art is long, life is short) ora pro scriptore (pray for the scribe) finis coronat opus (the end crowns the work) errare humanum est (to err is human) scriptori vita (long life to the scribe).
the art of war

3 – The strategy, tactics, and techniques of combat.

Example sentences

  • As one component of the art of war, tactics are but part of the whole; the complex, costly, and messy business of war must be seen in the round.
  • The American Army came to favor the science of war over the art of war, resulting in a stiff adherence to principles and rules.
  • They openly deprecated the principles of military science and art of war.
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Origin

Middle English: via Old French from Latin ars, art-.

More

  • Originally art was simply ‘skill at doing something’. Its use in the modern sense dates from the early 17th century. The word comes from Latin ars, from a base which meant ‘to put together, join, or fit’. There are many related words which stress the more practical roots of the word. These include artefact (early 19th century) from Latin arte factum ‘something made by art’; artifice (Late Middle English) from the same roots; and artisan from the Latin for ‘instructed in the arts’. The phrase art for art’s sake conveys the idea that the chief or only aim of a work of art is the self-expression of the artist who creates it. It was the slogan of the Aesthetic Movement, which flourished in England during the 1880s. The Latin version of the phrase, ars gratia artis, is the motto of the film company MGM, and appears around the roaring lion in its famous logo. Art deco, was shortened from French art décoratif ‘decorative art’, from the 1925 Exhibition title Exposition des Arts décoratifs in Paris. Latin iners which gives us inert (mid 17th century) and inertia (early 18th century) meant ‘unskilled, inactive’, and was formed as the opposite of ars.

Words that rhyme with art

apart, apparat, baht, Bart, Barthes, cart, carte, chart, clart, dart, Eilat, fart, ghat, Gujarat, Gujrat, hart, Harte, heart, heart-to-heart, impart, Jat, kart, kyat, Maat, Mansart, mart, outsmart, part, quarte, salat, savate, Scart, smart, start, tart, zakat

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