Yesterday, one of my Japanese friends insisted that 'real' is not an antonym of 'imaginary'.
He said 'real' can be an antonym of 'imaginary' only in old scientific documents or monographs.
He also said that 'real' can mean 'imaginary' in a way.
He said, "For example, when photographers say 'photo real' or 'super real', with the word 'real', they mean their images that are actually just in their minds. In this case, 'real' does not actually means 'fact' but more 'real' feeling than 'fact' which they feel about photos. That's why."
However, I don't think so.
I think 'real' can be an antonym of 'imaginary' in common use.
My dictionary says that 'real' (as an adjective) has following meanings:
1, NOT ARTIFICIAL, something that is real is actually what it seems to be and not false, artificial or pretended
2. NOT IMAGINARY, actually existing and not just imagined
In the first case, antonyms of 'real' are 'fake', 'artificial', and so forth.
In the second case, I think 'imaginary' can be an antonym of 'real'.
How do you think about it?
Would you tell me which one is correct?
And also, I have two more questions:
- Can 'virtual' be an antonym of 'real'?
(If so, I’ll be a little bit confused about the phrase 'virtual reality'. Does the phrase have two words which have opposite meanings? Can it make sense?)
- Can 'nominal' be an antonym of 'virtual'?