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original +‎ -ist


originalist (plural originalists)

  1. One who has, or tends to have, original ideas.
    • 1836, in The Monthly Review, January to April inclusive, volume 1, page 182:
      It seems to us, however, according to the rate at which novels have lately been published, that unless some great reformer or originalist shall, establish a new school, or unless some new principle of concoction be employed, by which the appetite for fresh stimulants may be satisfied, novel readers must soon become insensible to the charms of fiction, []
    • 1905 January, in The Dickensian, volume 1, number 1, page 38:
      His language is natural and happily wedded to his vivifying conceptions; and last but not least, he is quite unaffected and far above attempts at imitation, that is, he is a true originalist.
    • 1919 January-June, in Current Opinion, volume 66, page 95:
      Opposed to the "originalist" is the type of man "in whom banality exists as a supposed virtue; from whom it would not only seem an impropriety to act, dress, and think differently from other people, but in whom it would be deemed a virtue not even to desire to do so."
  2. One who aims to discover how the writers of a document intended it to be interpreted, and to interpret it in that way.
    • 2001, Jean-Marc Coicaud, Veijo Aulis Heiskanen (editors), The legitimacy of international organizations, page 388:
      This preference for dynamic or evolutionary interpretation over originalist interpretation is reflected in the structure of the Vienna Convention itself; subsequent agreements and understandings between the parties, as well as any relevant rules of international law (obviously including custom, which is necessarily evolutionary) are primary, obligatory sources of treaty interpretation according to Article 31, []
    • 2010, Treaty interpretation and the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties: 30 years on, page 271:
      So even if drafters' concrete intentions or meta-intentions are closer to the notion of state consent, the originalist is wrong to assume that this notion underpins human rights treaties.
    1. (theology) Specifically, one who aims to discover how the writers of the Jewish and Christian scriptures intended them to be interpreted, and to interpret them in that way.
      • 2009, Holy Writ: interpretation in law and religion, page 56:
        Before explicating the possibility of a non-textualist strategy let me address Philipse's arguments in favour of textualism as appropriate method in theology. Some of these arguments appeal to the religious traditions, and thus suggest that a believer qua believer (rather than qua historian) has to be originalist.
    2. (US) Specifically, one who aims to discover how the writers of the United States Constitution intended it to be interpreted, and to interpret it in that way.

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