Do you prefer humans to gods or animals? Well, perhaps you’re a budding humanist, someone who wants the best for humankind. A humanist is also a scholar of the classics and liberal arts.

The word humanist comes from the Renaissance, by way of an Italian poet, Lodovico Ariosto. It started out as a name for a scholar of classical Greek and Latin literature. It still describes someone who studies liberal arts, or humanities, but now a humanist is also someone who’s especially interested in what's good for humanity. Humanists want everyone to have enough food, shelter, and dignity.

Definitions of humanist
  1. noun
    an advocate of the principles of humanism; someone concerned with the interests and welfare of humans
    synonyms: humanitarian
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    type of:
    advocate, advocator, exponent, proponent
    a person who pleads for a person, cause, or idea
  2. adjective
    marked by humanistic values and devotion to human welfare
    synonyms: human-centered, human-centred, humanistic, humanitarian
    marked or motivated by concern with the alleviation of suffering
  3. noun
    a classical scholar or student of the liberal arts
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    Desiderius Erasmus
    Dutch humanist and theologian who was the leading Renaissance scholar of northern Europe; although his criticisms of the Roman Catholic Church led to the Reformation, he opposed violence and condemned Martin Luther (1466-1536)
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    classical scholar, classicist
    a student of ancient Greek and Latin
    man of letters
    a man devoted to literary or scholarly activities
    philologist, philologue
    a humanist specializing in classical scholarship
    a specialist in the Latin language
    type of:
    bookman, scholar, scholarly person, student
    a learned person (especially in the humanities); someone who by long study has gained mastery in one or more disciplines
  4. adjective
    of or pertaining to a philosophy asserting human dignity and man's capacity for fulfillment through reason and scientific method and often rejecting religion
    “"the humanist belief in continuous emergent evolution"- Wendell Thomas”
    synonyms: humanistic
  5. adjective
    of or pertaining to Renaissance humanism
    synonyms: humanistic
  6. adjective
    pertaining to or concerned with the humanities
    synonyms: humane, humanistic
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