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The making of unreasonably fine distinctions.

hair′split′ter n.
hair′split′ting adj.


the making of petty distinctions
occupied with or based on petty distinctions
ˈhairˌsplitter n


(ˈhɛərˌsplɪt ɪŋ)

1. the making of unnecessarily fine distinctions.
2. characterized by such distinctions; quibbling: hairsplitting arguments.
hair′split`ter, n.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.hairsplitting - making too fine distinctions of little importance; "they didn't take his hairsplitting seriously"
differentiation, distinction - a discrimination between things as different and distinct; "it is necessary to make a distinction between love and infatuation"
Adj.1.hairsplitting - developed in excessively fine detail; "finespun distinctions"
precise - sharply exact or accurate or delimited; "a precise mind"; "specified a precise amount"; "arrived at the precise moment"


1. adjpedante, cavilloso/a
2. npedanteria
References in classic literature ?
If such men will make a firm and solemn pause, and meditate dispassionately on the importance of this interesting idea; if they will contemplate it in all its attitudes, and trace it to all its consequences, they will not hesitate to part with trivial objections to a Constitution, the rejection of which would in all probability put a final period to the Union.
"In several cases, they raised trivial objections on the seals, serial number/tag number, signatures of polling staff on the tags, etc which required the intervention, explaining and convincing by the Returning Officer, District Election Officer and Observer before these EVMs were taken up for counting.
Notwithstanding trivial objections, the third era of Nawaz Sharif is observed by a knowledgeable author and is quite readable.