quiddity

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quid·di·ty

 (kwĭd′ĭ-tē)
n. pl. quid·di·ties
1. The real nature of a thing; the essence.
2. A hairsplitting distinction; a quibble.

[Medieval Latin quidditās, from Latin quid, what; see kwo- in Indo-European roots.]

quiddity

(ˈkwɪdɪtɪ)
n, pl -ties
1. (Philosophy) philosophy the essential nature of something. Compare haecceity
2. a petty or trifling distinction; quibble
[C16: from Medieval Latin quidditās, from Latin quid what]

quid•di•ty

(ˈkwɪd ɪ ti)

n., pl. -ties.
1. the quality that makes a thing what it is; essential nature.
2. a trifling nicety of subtle distinction, as in argument.
[1530–40; < Medieval Latin quidditās= Latin quid what + -itās -ity]

quiddity

the essential nature or quality of something that makes it different and distinct from other things and establishes its identity. — quidditative, adj.
See also: Philosophy
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.quiddity - an evasion of the point of an argument by raising irrelevant distinctions or objections
equivocation, evasion - a statement that is not literally false but that cleverly avoids an unpleasant truth
2.quiddity - the essence that makes something the kind of thing it is and makes it different from any other
essence, heart and soul, inwardness, nitty-gritty, pith, substance, gist, kernel, nub, meat, core, sum, marrow, heart, center, centre - the choicest or most essential or most vital part of some idea or experience; "the gist of the prosecutor's argument"; "the heart and soul of the Republican Party"; "the nub of the story"
Translations

quiddity

[ˈkwɪdɪtɪ] N (Philos) → esencia f; (= quibble) → sutileza f, sofistería f

quiddity

n
(Philos) → Quiddität f (spec), → Wesen nt
(liter: = quibble) → Spitzfindigkeit f
References in classic literature ?
cried the grum Esther; "no more of your quiddities in a healthy family, say I
Despite such minor quibbles and quiddities, this admirable book contains helpful notes pointing to an array of historically generous literary criticism and to a bevy of works about theological and theoretical issues relevant to Shakespeare's plays.
They are not considered in order to "know their quiddities in terms of themselves" (as is the case with the other sciences) "but insofar as they in some way have the character of divine being in themselves, by which they are referred to him" (a.
Mulla Sadra's meta philosophy was based on existence as the sole constituent of reality, and rejected any role for quiddities or essences in the external world.
If one already knows or grants that essence and esse are really distinct in all beings other than God, then one may indeed assign our recognition of these two features of a given being to the two distinct operations of the intellect, that is, to its grasp of quiddities, on the one hand, and to its judging operation, on the other.
The comparison is likely to depend on the quiddities of personnel and politics at any given moment in time, not to mention the policy question at stake.
For even if the two philosophies intersect in their discussion of the physical world, there remain fundamental epistemological and metaphysical differences, such as Avicenna's realism versus al-Ghazali's nominalism, their disagreement about the modalities and quiddities, and the varying structure of their cosmologies.