• Distinction without Difference
    Distinction without Difference
  • WordNet 3.6
    • adj distinct clearly or sharply defined to the mind "clear-cut evidence of tampering","Claudius was the first to invade Britain with distinct...intentions of conquest","trenchant distinctions between right and wrong"
    • adj distinct recognizable; marked "noticed a distinct improvement","at a distinct (or decided) disadvantage"
    • adj distinct easy to perceive; especially clearly outlined "a distinct flavor","a distinct odor of turpentine","a distinct outline","the ship appeared as a distinct silhouette","distinct fingerprints"
    • adj distinct (often followed by `from') not alike; different in nature or quality "plants of several distinct types","the word `nationalism' is used in at least two distinct senses","gold is distinct from iron","a tree related to but quite distinct from the European beech","management had interests quite distinct from those of their employees"
    • adj distinct constituting a separate entity or part "a government with three discrete divisions","on two distinct occasions"
    • ***

Additional illustrations & photos:

Two men wearing distinctly different uniforms are waving identical flags with the double headed eagle emblem and are fighting each other across a river. This may be a reference to the Russo-Turkish war of 1877–1878. Two Balkan men casually watch the battle from behind a wall Two men wearing distinctly different uniforms are waving identical flags with the double headed eagle emblem and are...

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: The longest word in the English language is 1909 letters long and it refers to a distinct part of DNA
    • Distinct Distinguished; having the difference marked; separated by a visible sign; marked out; specified. "Wherever thus created -- for no place
      Is yet distinct by name."
    • Distinct Marked; variegated. "The which [place] was dight
      With divers flowers distinct with rare delight."
    • Distinct Not identical; different; individual. "To offend, and judge, are distinct offices."
    • Distinct Separate in place; not conjunct; not united by growth or otherwise; -- with from. "The intention was that the two armies which marched out together should afterward be distinct ."
    • Distinct So separated as not to be confounded with any other thing; not liable to be misunderstood; not confused; well-defined; clear; as, we have a distinct or indistinct view of a prospect. "Relation more particular and distinct ."
    • v. t Distinct To distinguish.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
  • Interesting fact: In 1996, toy company Mattel released a "Harley Davidson" Barbie. This dolls distinctive feature is a birth mark on her face that changes position with every new release of the doll
    • distinct Distinguished; not identical; not the same; separate; specifically, marked off; discretely different from another or others, or from one another.
    • distinct Clearly distinguishable by sense; that may be plainly perceived; well defined; not blurred or indeterminate: as, a distinct view of an object; distinct articulation; to make a distinct mark or impression.
    • distinct Clearly distinguishable by the mind; unmistakable; indubitable; positive: as, a distinct assertion, promise, or falsehood.
    • distinct Very plain and intelligible in thought or expression. The distinction made by writers on vision between imperfection of vision due to want of light (obscurity) and that owing to distance (confusion) was transferred to psychology by Descartes. With him a distinct idea is one which resists dialectic criticism. Later writers, adhering more closely to the optical metaphor, make a clear idea to be one distinguishable from others, and a distinct idea to be one whose parts can be distinguished from one another; hence, one which can be abstractly defined.
    • distinct Distinguishing clearly; capable of receiving or characterized by definite impressions; not confused or obscure: as, distinct vision; distinct perception of right and wrong.
    • distinct Decorated; adorned.
    • distinct Synonyms Separate, etc. See different.
    • distinct Well marked, plain, obvious, unmistakable. See distinctly.
    • distinct To make distinct; distinguish.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: Jessica Tandy is the oldest winner of an Academy Award. She won the 1989 Best Actress award for Driving Miss Daisy at the age of 80 years and 9 months. She beat George Burns for that distinction by just a few months.
    • adj Distinct dis-tingkt′ separate: different: well-defined: clear:
    • adj Distinct dis-tingkt′ (Spens., Milt.) adorned
    • ***


  • John Ruskin
    “The distinctive character of a child is to always live in the tangible present.”
  • Albert Einstein
    “The distinctions separating the social classes are false; in the last analysis they rest on force.”
  • Ralph Waldo Emerson
    “Envy is the tax which all distinction must pay.”
  • Sir Thomas Browne
    “But the iniquity of oblivion blindly scattereth her poppy, and deals with the memory of men without distinction to merit of perpetuity.”
  • William Blake
    “To generalize is to be an idiot. To particularize is the alone distinction of merit. General knowledge are those knowledge that idiots possess.”
  • George Eliot
    “Harold, like the rest of us, had many impressions which saved him the trouble of distinct ideas.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
L. distinctus, p. p. of distinguere,: cf. F. distinct,. See Distinguish
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
See Distinguish.


In literature:

Let but the line be made clear and distinct, and all men will then know what they are to trust to.
"The Writings Of Thomas Paine, Complete" by Thomas Paine
In an early essay on Doellinger he makes a distinction of this kind.
"The History of Freedom" by John Emerich Edward Dalberg-Acton
They are divided into clans and distinct social orders.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 6, Slice 2" by Various
But this is only a rough distinction, which breaks down at many points.
"Psychology" by Robert S. Woodworth
Yet another expression of a Law of Identity which is really distinct from and an addition to Aristotle's original.
"Logic, Inductive and Deductive" by William Minto
His mind made no distinctions as yet.
"The "Genius"" by Theodore Dreiser
Distinctions of colour are very frequent.
"The Woodlands Orchids" by Frederick Boyle
Mr. Money was a person of importance and distinction.
"The Galaxy, April, 1877" by Various
For the distinction is possible only so long as a distinction is allowed between our perceptions and the realities perceived.
"Kant's Theory of Knowledge" by Harold Arthur Prichard
But, in fellowship of nature, the essence of God is communicated to the Son in the distinctness of His mode of subsisting.
"The Expositor's Bible: The Epistle to the Hebrews" by Thomas Charles Edwards

In poetry:

With a strange and untold horror
All his spirit overcast,
As the dreadful panorama
Rolled in sad distinctness past.
"Caleb's Vision" by Alfred Gibbs Campbell
Two ogres dwelt in Wickham Wold -
Each TRAITS distinctive had:
The younger was as good as gold,
The elder was as bad.
"The Two Ogres" by William Schwenck Gilbert
So they lov'd, as love in twain
Had the essence but in one;
Two distincts, division none:
Number there in love was slain.
"The Phoenix And The Turtle" by William Shakespeare
And bright, and warm, and sweet to view
It grows distinct and fair,
As if the waves were mirrors true
And you were looking there:
"The Pool" by Alexander Anderson
Just as clearly and distinctly,
I have seen another time
The same things that now I witness,
And 'twas but a dream.
"Life Is A Dream - Act III" by Denis Florence MacCarthy
"Great inventors", say you? Granted;
Such material gifts are ours;
Every age hath some distinction,
Every race its special powers.
"Discouragement" by John Lawson Stoddard

In news:

Dyslexia may be rooted in a problem the brain has in teasing out distinct sounds from the incoming garble, researchers say.
For her next gig, South Carolina-based Angela Easterling has booked a pair of library dates in western Pa. Easterling is an engaging singer/songwriter of distinction.
Erica Olsen will be the emcee of the Daily Breeze People of Distinction awards ceremony on Nov 14.
Even Fremantle's accent would not have given him away–by his own account, Southern gentlemen still spoke like Englishmen , although the women, curiously, had distinct American accents.
A case of extranasopharyngeal angiofibroma of the ethmoid sinus: A distinct clinical entity at an unusual site.
Vin Diesel's rapidly expanding base of fans will go into XXX looking for a fresh dose of the actor's body art and his somewhat distinctive way with a putdown.
The company says it has a "distinct perspective on the long-term drivers of shareholder return".
Showcasing the distinctive designs of TRI Pointe Homes' Castlerock in Riverside, a stylishly decorated model home has been unveiled to the public.
Picking up the phone in San Pedro, the town he's called home since his childhood, he answers with a distinct, direct bark: "Watt.".
They are two distinctive things.
Many biographies offer "the life and legend" of a prominent figure, but few figures so blurred that distinction as did T.E.
Well, I would like to bestow upon Oprah a new distinction: Oprah the existentialist .
Revolutionary Expandable Bone Graft and Resorbable Adhesion Barrier Broadens Company's Portfolio of Distinctive Orthobiologics.
At opposite ends of the pole, however, are the people who are distinctly introverted or extroverted in their daily lives.
It comes with soft lilac and gray eye shadow shades to help create a distinctive look without it going too dark or edgy.

In science:

Let P , Q, U, V be distinct points in the plane, such that the segments P Q and U V cross.
Random unitaries in non-commutative tori, and an asymptotic model for q-circular systems
Assume now that the λi ∈ N are distinct, and that the µi ∈ N are distinct.
Rationality properties of unipotent representations
For simplicity, assume that the perception of each distinct state is distinct, so pi = pj if and only if i = j .
Quantum Mechanics as a Simple Generalization of Classical Mechanics
Vn represent a generalization of tori: in the same way as Tn is the topological product of n (distinct) S 1 factors, Vn is the topological product of n (distinct) S 3 factors.
Hyperhamiltonian dynamics
Then sj,i belongs to αj (Ji ) by Lemma 5.4, and {sj,i}(j,i)∈Z×N are mutually distinct because ν is injective and the ti ’s are mutually distinct.
A simple C*-algebra with a finite and an infinite projection