What is the difference between "fantastic" and "fantastical"?
Jun 20, 2019 11:41 AM
Answers · 2
Personally, I would say: 1) "fantastic" = brilliant, really good e.g. "your cooking is fantastic!" or "Fantastic news! She's had a baby boy!" Often it is used sarcastically (especially in Britain) e.g. "It's raining again. Fantastic." I would NOT say "fantastical" in these sentences. 2) "fantastical" = amazing, but also relating to fantasy, not real e.g. "She has some fantastical idea to climb Mount Everest" or "He painted a fantastical scene with monsters and dragons" In 2), you could MAYBE say "fantastic" in these sentences, with the same meaning..... but, I personally think this is a bit old-fashioned and less common. It could also be confusing e.g. "She has some fantastic idea to climb Mount Everest" - do we mean it is a brilliant idea, or an unreal crazy idea? (It would perhaps depend on the tone of voice, who is speaking, etc...) I think the history of the words is the same, but in practice they are used differently nowadays. (Like the person on Stackexchange, I think is not up-to-date)
June 26, 2019
There's a decent discussion of this at In essence, the words overlap in meaning in most regards, other than that "fantastic" has an additional everyday, common meaning of "really good" which "fantastical" does not.
June 20, 2019
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