Beauty may be in the eye of the beholder, but it's also in the language we use and everywhere in the world around us. In this elegant, witty, and ultimately profound meditation on what is beautiful, Sartwell begins with six words from six different cultures - ancient Greek's 'to kalon', the Japanese idea of 'wabi-sabi', Hebrew's 'yapha', the Navajo concept 'hozho', Sanskrit 'sundara', and our own English-language 'beauty'. Each word becomes a door onto another way of thinking about, and looking at, what is beautiful in the world, and in our lives. The earthy and the exalted, the imperfect and the ideal: things, spaces, high art, sounds, aromas, nothingness. Sartwell writes about handfuls of beautiful things - among them, a Japanese teapot and Diana Rigg as Mrs Emma Peel, the pleasure in a well-used hammer and in pop music and in Vermeer's 'Girl in a Red Hat'.In Sartwell's hands these six names of beauty - and there could be thousands more - are revealed as simple and profound ideas about our world and ourselves.

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