The branch of philosophy dealing with beauty and taste; SYN. aesthetics.
Branch of philosophy that deals with the nature of beauty, especially in art. It emerged as a distinct branch of inquiry in the mid-18th century.
The subject of esthetics was introduced by Plato and enlarged upon by Aristotle, but the term was first used by the German philosopher Baumgarten (1714–1762). Other philosophers interested in this area were Immanuel Kant, David Hume, Benedetto Croce, John Dewey, and George Santayana.