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"Ideas" Versus "Ideals"

By
Mignon Fogarty,
January 12, 2010

ideals

  by Mignon Fogarty

Josepha, a host at KHHT in Los Angeles, insisted that she often hears people say "ideals" when they mean "ideas."

An idea is a thought, a notion, or a concept. An ideal is a lofty aim when it's used as a noun and the rough equivalent of "excellent" or "perfect" when it's used as an adjective.

  •  I have an idea.
  •  He stuck to his ideals.
  •  She was an ideal student.

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