ideal (adj.) Look up ideal at
early 15c., "pertaining to an archetype or model," from Late Latin idealis "existing in idea," from Latin idea in the Platonic sense (see idea). Senses "conceived as perfect; existing only in idea," are from 1610s. T.H. Huxley used ideagenous "generating ideas" (1881).
ideal (n.) Look up ideal at
"(hypothetical) perfect person, thing, or state," 1796, in a translation of Kant, from ideal (adj.). Hence "standard or model of perfection" (1849).