distinguish


distinguish
dis•tin•guish
[[t]dɪˈstɪŋ gwɪʃ[/t]] v. t.
1) to mark off as different (often fol. by from or by):
His height distinguishes him from the other boys[/ex]
2) to recognize as distinct or different; recognize the individual features or characteristics of
3) to perceive clearly by sight or other sense; discern; recognize
4) to set apart as different; characterize:
Her Italian accent distinguishes her[/ex]
5) to make prominent or eminent:
to distinguish oneself in the arts[/ex]
6) to divide into classes; classify
7) archaic to single out for special attention or honor
8) to indicate or show a difference (usu. fol. by between)
9) to recognize or note differences; discriminate
Etymology: 1555–65; « L distinguere; see distinct dis•tin′guish•a•ble, adj. dis•tin`guish•a•bil′i•ty, n. dis•tin′guish•a•bly, adv. syn: distinguish, differentiate, discriminate mean to note the difference between two or more similar things. To distinguish is to recognize differences based on characteristic features or qualities: to distinguish a light cruiser from a heavy cruiser. To differentiate is to find and point out the exact differences in detail: The symptoms of both diseases are so similar that it is hard to differentiate one from the other. To discriminate is to note fine or subtle distinctions and to judge their significance: to discriminate prejudiced from unprejudiced testimony.

From formal English to slang. 2014.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • distinguish — dis·tin·guish vt: to identify or explain differences in or from distinguish ed the cases on factual grounds Merriam Webster’s Dictionary of Law. Merriam Webster. 1996. distinguish …   Law dictionary

  • Distinguish — Dis*tin guish, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Distinguished}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Distinguishing}.] [F. distinguer, L. distinguere, distinctum; di = dis + stinguere to quench, extinguish; prob. orig., to prick, and so akin to G. stechen, E. stick, and perh.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • distinguish — 1 Distinguish, differentiate, discriminate, demarcate are synonymous when they mean to point out or mark the differences between things that are or seem to be much alike or closely related. Distinguish presupposes sources of confusion; the things …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • distinguish — [di stiŋ′gwish] vt. [< L distinguere, to separate, discriminate < dis , apart + stinguere, to prick < IE base * steig , to prick, pierce (> STICK, Ger sticken, to embroider, Gr stigma) + ISH, sense 2] 1. to separate or mark off by… …   English World dictionary

  • distinguish — [v1] tell the difference analyze, ascertain, categorize, characterize, classify, collate, decide, demarcate, determinate, determine, diagnose, diagnosticate, differentiate, discriminate, divide, estimate, extricate, figure out, finger*, identify …   New thesaurus

  • distinguish — ► VERB 1) recognize, show, or treat as different. 2) manage to discern (something barely perceptible). 3) be an identifying characteristic of. 4) (distinguish oneself) make oneself worthy of respect. DERIVATIVES distinguishable adjective …   English terms dictionary

  • Distinguish — Dis*tin guish, v. i. 1. To make distinctions; to perceive the difference; to exercise discrimination; with between; as, a judge distinguishes between cases apparently similar, but differing in principle. [1913 Webster] 2. To become distinguished… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • distinguish — 1560s, from M.Fr. distinguiss , stem of distinguer, or directly from L. distinguere to separate between, separate by pricking, from dis apart (see DIS (Cf. dis )) + stinguere to prick (see EXTINGUISH (Cf. extinguish), and Cf. L. instinguere …   Etymology dictionary

  • distinguish */*/*/ — UK [dɪˈstɪŋɡwɪʃ] / US verb Word forms distinguish : present tense I/you/we/they distinguish he/she/it distinguishes present participle distinguishing past tense distinguished past participle distinguished 1) [intransitive/transitive] to recognize …   English dictionary

  • distinguish — dis|tin|guish [ dı stıŋgwıʃ ] verb *** 1. ) intransitive or transitive to recognize the differences between things: DIFFERENTIATE: He learned to distinguish a great variety of birds, animals, and plants. distinguish between: They concluded that… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • distinguish — 01. Children under the age of 4 cannot always [distinguish] between the truth and a lie. 02. Witnesses to the crime said the suspect had no [distinguishing] features. 03. The Beatles [distinguished] themselves as perhaps the most important… …   Grammatical examples in English


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