AskDefine | Define difference

Dictionary Definition

difference

Noun

1 the quality of being unlike or dissimilar; "there are many differences between jazz and rock" [ant: sameness]
2 a variation that deviates from the standard or norm; "the deviation from the mean" [syn: deviation, divergence, departure]
3 a disagreement or argument about something important; "he had a dispute with his wife"; "there were irreconcilable differences"; "the familiar conflict between Republicans and Democrats" [syn: dispute, difference of opinion, conflict]
4 a significant change; "the difference in her is amazing"; "his support made a real difference"
5 the number that remains after subtraction; the number that when added to the subtrahend gives the minuend [syn: remainder]

User Contributed Dictionary

English

Pronunciation

Etymology

From difference.

Noun

  1. The quality of being different.
    You need to learn to be more tolerant of difference.
  2. A characteristic of something that makes it different from something else.
    There are three differences between these two pictures.
  3. A disagreement or argument about something important.
  4. (countable) The result of a subtraction; sometimes the absolute value of this result.

Synonyms

Antonyms

Translations

quality of being different
characteristic of something that makes it different from something else
disagreement or argument about something important
arithmetic: result of a subtraction

Verb

  1. To distinguish or differentiate.

Synonyms

Translations

to distinguish or differentiate

Extensive Definition

Difference is the contrary of equality, in particular of objects. Differences can only be stated on the basis of a comparison or categorization. Since a complete comparison of objects or things is seldom possible in practice, only relevant or defining attributes are used for stating equality or difference. Similar objects are only different with respect to attributes of minor discriminative value.
In order for something to be different, you must have something to compare it to.
In particular, difference can refer to:

See also

difference in German: Differenz
difference in Hungarian: Különbség
difference in Portuguese: Diferença
difference in Simple English: Difference

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

aberrance, aberrancy, aberration, abnormality, abnormity, about-face, accommodation, account, achievement, adaptation, adjustment, aggregate, agreement to disagree, alerion, alienation, alteration, amelioration, amorphism, amount, animal charge, annulet, anomalism, anomalousness, anomaly, antagonism, apostasy, argent, argument, argumentation, armorial bearings, armory, arms, asymmetry, azure, bad copy, bad likeness, balance, bandeau, bar, bar sinister, baton, bearings, bend, bend sinister, betterment, billet, blazon, blazonry, bordure, box score, break, broad arrow, cadency mark, camouflage, canton, capriciousness, cast, change, change of heart, changeability, changeableness, chaplet, character, characteristic, charge, chevron, chief, choppiness, clash, clashing, coat of arms, cockatrice, conflict, constructive change, contention, continuity, contradiction, contradistinction, contrariety, contrast, controversy, conversion, coronet, count, counter-culture, credit, crescent, crest, cross, cross moline, cross-purposes, crown, dappleness, defection, deficit, degeneration, degenerative change, derangement, deterioration, deviation, device, difference of opinion, differencing, differentiate, differentiation, difficulty, disaccord, disaccordance, disagreement, disapprobation, disapproval, discern, discontinuity, discord, discordance, discordancy, discrepancy, discriminate, disequilibrium, disguise, disharmony, disorder, disparity, disproportion, dispute, dissatisfaction, dissemblance, dissension, dissent, dissentience, dissidence, dissimilarity, dissimilation, dissimilitude, dissonance, distinction, distinguish, disunion, disunity, divarication, divergence, divergency, diversification, diversion, diversity, dividedness, division, dropping out, eagle, eccentricity, epact, ermine, ermines, erminites, erminois, erraticism, escutcheon, extricate, faction, falcon, fess, fess point, field, file, fitting, flanch, fleur-de-lis, flip-flop, fret, fur, fusil, garland, gradual change, griffin, gules, gyron, hatchment, helmet, heraldic device, heterogeneity, heteromorphism, honor point, idiosyncrasy, imbalance, impalement, impaling, improvement, inaccordance, inadequacy, incommensurability, incomparability, incongruity, inconsistency, inconstancy, inequality, inequity, inescutcheon, inferiority, injustice, instability, insufficiency, irregularity, jarring, jerkiness, label, leftovers, lion, lozenge, makeup, mantling, marshaling, martlet, mascle, melioration, mercuriality, mere caricature, metal, metamorphosis, minority opinion, misunderstanding, mitigation, modification, modulation, monstrosity, motleyness, motto, mullet, mutability, nature, negation, net, nombril point, nonagreement, nonassent, nonconcurrence, nonconformism, nonconformity, nonconsent, nonstandardization, nonuniformity, number, octofoil, odds, opposition, oppugnancy, or, ordinary, orle, otherness, overbalance, overthrow, pale, paly, pean, peculiarity, pheon, polarization, poor imitation, product, purpure, qualification, quantity, quarrel, quarter, quartering, radical change, raggedness, re-creation, realignment, reckoning, recusance, recusancy, redesign, reform, reformation, rejection, remainder, remaking, renewal, repudiation, repugnance, reshaping, rest, restructuring, reversal, revival, revivification, revolution, rose, sable, saltire, score, scutcheon, secession, separate, sever, severalize, shield, shift, shortcoming, spread eagle, strife, subnormality, subordinary, sudden change, sum, summation, superiority, surplus, switch, tale, tally, tenne, teratism, the bottom line, the story, the whole story, tincture, torse, total, total change, transformation, transition, tressure, turn, turnabout, unbalance, unconformism, unconformity, underground, unevenness, unfair discrimination, unharmoniousness, unicorn, unlikeness, unnaturalism, unnaturalness, unorthodoxy, unresemblance, unsameness, unsimilarity, unsteadiness, upheaval, vair, variability, variance, variation, variegation, variety, variousness, versatility, vert, violent change, wavering, whole, withdrawal, worsening, wreath, x number, yale
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