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Meaning of Beauty Is In The Eyes Of The Beholder!

Updated on September 12, 2011

Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder

It is often said that "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder" and this goes to prove that beauty is highly subjective. We all obviously have different tastes. What appears beautiful to one person may seem ugly or not so beautiful to another. It is the person who is looking (the beholder) who has to form his or her own opinion whether a particular person, place or object is beautiful.

Many literary researchers believe that Margaret Wolfe Hungerford (née Hamilton), who wrote prolifically under the pseudonym 'The Duchess' was the first person ever to write "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder". In her book Molly Bawn written in 1878, the line "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder” appears for the first time in print.

David Hume, the erudite philosopher writes in his Essays, Moral and Political - "Beauty in things exists merely in the mind which contemplates them."

An Example of partial nudity being beauty in itself (picture source unknown)
An Example of partial nudity being beauty in itself (picture source unknown)

There are however certain things where beauty ceases to be relative – for instance, the beauty of a flower, the splendor of sunset, the majesty of mountains, the goegeous waterfall or a stunningly attractive painting.

It is paradoxical why most people immediately equate the saying "beauty is in the eye of the beholder" to the physical appearance of another man or woman. Abraham Lincoln, Mahatma Gandhi or Mother Theresa are indeed beautiful historic personalities although their physical appearance was all that graceful. Truer may be the proverb “ Handsome is that handsome does”

Will Durant writes “All minds admire beauty but few minds wonder why”. What is beauty anyway? Hearing pleasant music is beauty to the ears – it is beauty to the listener and not to the beholder. A sweet smelling flower can be deemed beautiful to the nose and to the one who smells it. A well-worded poem can be beautiful to the mind and to the reader. Thus it can be said, without fear of contradiction, that the saying "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder" is highly relative and not definitive in nature.

My views may be different from other people. Different people may have different concepts of beauty. As the title says Beauty Lies in the eyes of the beholder.

This hub was made in response to "I request a hub from sunseven on "what is the difference between Beauty and Partial nudity" by another user at hubpages.

Thank You.

What's your take on 'Beauty'?

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    • profile image

      MANNY POPE 4 years ago

      ITS LIKE JOHN LENNON SAID IN A SONG."WE ALL SHINE ON"

    • profile image

      ImConfusedagain 5 years ago

      Yes beutys in the eye of the be holder. i find pale people pretty

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      zelle 6 years ago

      is beauty or image important?

    • profile image

      VivekSri 7 years ago

      This is a great hub written and I agree with what you have said here. Thanks for your time in writing such cool hubs.

    • cristina327 profile image

      Maria Cristina Aquino Santander 7 years ago from Manila

      Great poetry. Thanks for sharing it. Remain blessed. Best regards.

    • profile image

      ME?? 7 years ago

      Blah

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      Aju Mukhopadhyay 8 years ago

      Beauty is eternal- mostly in nature, in human face or a bird's flight and sometimes in the nude- always natural that I like without any artificial cosmetic effect-

      Aju Mukhopadhyay

    • bhupender singh profile image

      bhupender singh 9 years ago from jhajjar

      every thing can become beautiful if it will see from certain angle

    • Prince Maak profile image

      Prince Maak 10 years ago from Just Above the EARTH and below the SKY

      True beauty consists in purity of heart.

    • Rmnathan profile image

      Rmnathan 10 years ago from Sharjah

      A Person who loves the nature can see beauty in almost everything in the world.

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      Kelm Speaks 10 years ago

      Bravo on a beautiful hub and on beautiful comments If there is anyone who hasn't learned this I feel sad because beauty is everywhere!

    • profile image

      surendra 10 years ago

      this work is appreciable

    • profile image

      goodrenu 10 years ago

      so far only males have written their comments and no female has expressed her view, yesterday i had written some comment on this blog of sunseven. i think it has been disapproved by writer. when sunseven is carrying out this survey about beauty and partial nudity, she should not disapprove any comment written by some hubber. if she has to approve those comments which are in her favour and disapprove which is not in her favour, she should discontinue this survey. today i will again write my comment in a new more justified way. once again i read both hubs,ie, of surendra and of sunseven. i notice there is clash of ego between both writers. pl read my comment - (1) in my view sunseven is correct and surendra is also not wrong. how both writers can be correct at the same time. sunseven has displayed some girl (partial nude) under sea water at beach. no doubt this photo looks beautiful and there are some more girls (partial nude) being seen in magjines and cinemas, but these girls are paid enough by AD film makers to pose as partially exposing their private parts and i am sure these girls do not wear such clothes in their daily lives. why these girls expose their private parts partially is simply to earn money in easy way. (2) surendra in his hub speaks of av normal girls as seen in our homes and neighbours who never wear clothes which expose their private parts partially. i ask my fellow hubbers can we allow our sisters to wear such clothes which partially expose private parts, certainly not. even in western countries av normal girls do not wear such clothes. such cases are seen in cinemas. Hence in my view both writers are correct in their theories. Hope my friend sunseven will agree to me. I think both writers should should shake hands and end this ego clash. Thanks

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      arun 10 years ago

      Hi

      I appreciate yr efforts for yr knowledgeble and entertaining mails. beauty and nudity are entirely different. It depends what we are seeing.

      arun

    • profile image

      balwant kaur 10 years ago

      the comments so far written on this hub are all from males and no female has expressed her view over this hub, may I ask sunseven can she appear in photos in partial exposing private parts, if her answer is yes, I would like to see such photos.

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      Sanjeewa 10 years ago

      Buty is buty no other word can express the buty, thanks

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      Sujeevan 10 years ago

      Beauty is a thing purely depend on befolder's eyes and perception. Female / male nudity is a beautiful thing and always depend on how it is displayed and the posture. beauty always creates pleasant mind rather than violent or unstable.

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      Rahul Singh 10 years ago

      I READ IT SOMEWHERE. AND TAKE BEAUTY IN A BROADER SENSE-NATURE. AND OF COARSE IT INCLUDES WOMAN AS WELL. OTHERWISE WHY A NUDE LADY HAS BEEN THE MODEL FOR ARTISTS SINCE CENTURIES ?

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      Haris A. Khan 10 years ago

      Let me clear there is lot of difference b/w beauty & Nudity. Dear beauty is natural or sometime artificle. But nudity belongs only figures and physi.

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      SANJAY KUMAR SHARMA 10 years ago

      Actually in my view, beauty has no bound limit of categories. I giving here views on women beauty not on natural beauty. So someone has black beauty. Inspite of some women loking u very attractive because of their features. Someone has natural beauty whitish. But here i want to say that coulor is never a main point of beauty. Beauty is naturally & we see daily some example of artificial created models of beauty only for attractive purpose but this is not a longer & reliable. that's all as my views regarding human beauty only.

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      Atul  10 years ago

      Very aptly described. This really shows the genius of your mind..Just great. There could not be a better answer.

    • cgull8m profile image

      cgull8m 10 years ago from North Carolina

      Physical beauty wears with time, the above lasts longer than time. Thanks.

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      rocky 10 years ago

      yes you are right. there is always beauty to be found anywhere you go. but sometimes the same thing loses it's meaning, if done in a different way. for example i would like to tell you that thereis so much beauty in the act of making love when two lovers are doing it to one another at the peak of their intimacy,it has inspiredmany a poets and artiststo compose poes and make world famous portraits. but the same act of making love looses all it's meaning and said to make the whole society dirty whaen it is paid for in a brothel.

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      Aryan 10 years ago

      i agree with ur view, but i think beauty is ifself beauty to all people eyes it is not different for different people as beauty is intact. its only the different way of people to see it , there is beauty in parial nudity , full nudity and in unnudity(with full cloth), beauty can be seen, ever it can b feel (unseen )i .e., mother love, sunshine, storm, beauty of freindship bood . beauty of though, honest , intregity , in nudity beauty is seen only as it remail unseen

      everything look beautful if it is rare and unseen , for example id ka chand . so beauty is in everything it only different in state of mind

    • profile image

      MAX 10 years ago

      BEAUTY doesn’t have any LIMIT only thing is that what your eyes like to view before & after is BEAUTY

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      NAVEEN KUMAR 10 years ago

      I TOTALLY AGREE WITH U, BEAUTINESS HAVE DIFFERENT MEANING FOR DIFFERENT PEOPLE, IN MY OPINION ,BEAUTY DEMAND NUDITY ,BUT ONLY AT A LIMIT ,WHERE IT LOOKS GOOD , MORE THAN THAT LIMIT IT WILL DESTROY THE BEAUTY.

      ANYWAY, THANKS FOR SUCH A NICE THINKING

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      Michael Fleischer 10 years ago

      Beautiful photo. I completely agree that beauty goes far deeper than the eyes can see.