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These nouns refer to a lack of correspondence or agreement. Difference is the most general: differences in color and size; a difference of degree but not of kind.
Dissimilarity and unlikeness often suggest a wide or fundamental difference: the dissimilarity between human and computer language; attracted to each other by their very unlikeness.
However, dissimilarity is also used to emphasize the points of difference between things that are otherwise alike or comparable: an analysis of the dissimilarities between the two sets of data.
Divergence can denote a difference resulting from a branching or separation; alternatively, it can indicate a range of difference within a category: the growing divergence between British and American English; a large group with a divergence of opinions on the subject.
Variation occurs between things of the same class or species; often it refers to a modification of something original, prescribed, or typical: variations in temperature; a variation of a familiar technique.
Distinction often means a difference in detail determinable only by close inspection: the distinction between "good" and "excellent."
A discrepancy is a difference between things that should correspond or match: a discrepancy between his words and his actions.
dif•fer•ence(ˈdɪf ər əns, ˈdɪf rəns)
n., v. -enced, -enc•ing. n.
The difference between things is the way or ways in which they are not the same.
If something makes a difference to a situation, it affects it, usually in a positive way. If something makes no difference to a situation, it doesn't affect it.
If someone points out that two things are different, don't say that they 'make a difference' between the things. You say that they make a distinction or draw a distinction between them.
Past participle: differenced
|Noun||1.||difference - the quality of being unlike or dissimilar; "there are many differences between jazz and rock"|
quality - an essential and distinguishing attribute of something or someone; "the quality of mercy is not strained"--Shakespeare
otherness, separateness, distinctness - the quality of being not alike; being distinct or different from that otherwise experienced or known
differential - a quality that differentiates between similar things
differentia - distinguishing characteristics (especially in different species of a genus)
distinction - a distinguishing difference; "he learned the distinction between gold and lead"
discrepancy, disagreement, divergence, variance - a difference between conflicting facts or claims or opinions; "a growing divergence of opinion"
variety, change - a difference that is usually pleasant; "he goes to France for variety"; "it is a refreshing change to meet a woman mechanic"
inequality - lack of equality; "the growing inequality between rich and poor"
sameness - the quality of being alike; "sameness of purpose kept them together"
|2.||difference - a variation that deviates from the standard or norm; "the deviation from the mean"|
driftage - the deviation (by a vessel or aircraft) from its intended course due to drifting
|3.||difference - 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"|
disagreement - the speech act of disagreeing or arguing or disputing
collision - a conflict of opposed ideas or attitudes or goals; "a collision of interests"
contestation, controversy, disceptation, arguing, argument, contention, disputation, tilt - a contentious speech act; a dispute where there is strong disagreement; "they were involved in a violent argument"
gap - a difference (especially an unfortunate difference) between two opinions or two views or two situations
|4.||difference - a significant change; "the difference in her is amazing"; "his support made a real difference"|
change - a relational difference between states; especially between states before and after some event; "he attributed the change to their marriage"
|5.||difference - the number that remains after subtraction; the number that when added to the subtrahend gives the minuend|
balance - the difference between the totals of the credit and debit sides of an account
number - a concept of quantity involving zero and units; "every number has a unique position in the sequence"
dissimilarity similarity, resemblance, affinity, relation, conformity, likeness, sameness, congruence, comparability, similitude
a car with a difference → un coche diferente or especial
that makes all the difference → eso cambia totalmente la cosa
it makes no difference → da igual, da lo mismo
it makes no difference to me → me da igual or lo mismo
it will make no difference to us → nos dará igual or lo mismo, no nos afectará en lo más mínimo
what difference does it make? → ¿qué más da?
it makes a lot of difference → importa mucho
see also split C2
difference in sth [+ size, colour, age] → différence de qch
There's not much difference in age between us → Il n'y a pas une grande différence d'âge entre nous.
difference between → différence entre
to tell the difference between (= distinguish) → différencier
I can't tell the difference between them → Je suis incapable de les différencier.
to make a difference (= be important) → avoir de l'importance
It makes no difference → Ça n'a pas d'importance.
it makes no difference to me (= is of no importance) → cela m'est égal, cela m'est indifférent
to make a difference to sth (= affect) → avoir un effet sur qch
to make all the difference (= be a decisive factor) → faire toute la différence
with a difference (= very unusual) [holiday, job] → pas comme les autres
to settle one's differences, to resolve one's differences → résoudre la situation
a difference of opinion (= disagreement) → une divergence d'opinions
that makes all the difference → questo cambia tutto
it makes no difference to me → per me è lo stesso
a car with a difference → una macchina diversa dalle altre
the difference in her is amazing → è incredibile com'è cambiata
I'll make up the difference later (of money) → ti do il resto dopo
common difference (Math) → ragione f