dif|fer|ence [ `dıf(ə)rəns ] noun ***
1. ) count or uncount something that makes one thing or person not the same as another thing or person:
cultural/social/political differences
difference between: What's the difference between these two computers?
difference in: There's a big difference in the attitudes of town and country people.
significant/marked/major difference: the significant difference in sound quality between CDs and records
slight/subtle/minor differences: There are subtle differences in their arrangement of the music.
crucial/essential/fundamental difference: The fundamental difference between John and Jake is their attitudes to money.
─ opposite SIMILARITY
2. ) count usually singular the amount by which one thing is different from another thing:
The same car costs $500 less here which is quite a difference!
age/price/temperature difference: Despite this age difference, they fell in love.
a world of difference (=a very big difference): There's a world of difference between liking someone and wanting to marry them.
3. ) differences plural disagreements about something:
trying to smooth out differences between them
have your differences: Joe and I have had our differences, but we work well together.
resolve/settle your differences: The two parties agreed to settle their differences.
irreconcilable differences (=disagreements that cannot be settled): Journalists were told the talks had broken down because of irreconcilable differences.
difference of opinion
a disagreement about something:
We had a slight difference of opinion over the design.
make a difference
1. ) to have an important effect on something, especially a good effect:
make a difference to: This scheme will certainly make a difference to the way I do my job.
2. ) something that makes a lot of difference has a good effect on a person or situation:
make a big/a great deal of/a lot of difference: The fact that I can now organize my own time makes a big difference.
make all the difference (to someone): Having someone to talk to made all the difference to my mother.
make no/little difference
to not be important or not have any effect:
Anybody can enjoy yoga, and your age makes absolutely no difference.
make no/little difference to: The news made little difference to his plans.
tell the difference
1. ) to notice what is different between similar people or things:
tell the difference between: How do you tell the difference between the kittens?
2. ) to notice what has changed about someone or something:
She said she'd had her hair cut, but I couldn't tell the difference.
with a difference
used for saying that something is more interesting or unusual than other similar things:
It was a wedding with a difference the bride wore black!

Usage of the words and phrases in modern English. 2013.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • différence — [ diferɑ̃s ] n. f. • 1160; lat. differentia 1 ♦ Caractère (une différence) ou ensemble des caractères (la différence) qui distingue une chose d une autre, un être d un autre; relation d altérité entre ces choses, entre ces êtres. ⇒ dissemblance,… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Difference — Différence Différence désigne ce qui distingue deux choses, et de façon extensive ce qui distingue plusieurs choses, éventuellement prises deux à deux. Sommaire 1 Mathématiques 2 Statistiques 3 Sens courant 4 Sources …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Différence — désigne ce qui distingue deux choses, et de façon extensive ce qui distingue plusieurs choses, éventuellement prises deux à deux. Sommaire 1 Mathématiques 2 Statistiques 3 Sens courant 4 Sources …   Wikipédia en Français

  • difference — Difference, Delectus, Discrimen, Differentia, Diuersitas, Distantia, Discerniculum. Difference ou desaccordance, Discrepantia. La plus grande difference qui soit entre l homme et la beste, c est que, etc. Inter hominem et belluam hoc maxime… …   Thresor de la langue françoyse

  • différence — DIFFÉRENCE. s. f. Diversité, dissemblance, distinction. Grande différence. Différence notable, essentielle. Légère différence. Il y a grande différence entre l un et l autre, de l un à l autre, de l un avec l autre. Différence de personnes, de… …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie Française 1798

  • difference — Difference. s. f. v. Diversité, dissemblance, distinction. Grande difference. difference notable, essentielle. legere difference. il y a grande difference entre l un & l autre, de l un à l autre, de l un avec l autre. difference de personnes, de… …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie française

  • Difference — Dif fer*ence, n. [F. diff[ e]rence, L. differentia.] 1. The act of differing; the state or measure of being different or unlike; distinction; dissimilarity; unlikeness; variation; as, a difference of quality in paper; a difference in degrees of… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • difference — [dif′ər əns, dif′rəns] n. [ME < OFr < L differentia < differens, prp. of differre: see DIFFER] 1. condition, quality, fact, or instance of being different 2. the way in which people or things are different; esp., a determining point or… …   English World dictionary

  • Difference — may refer to: Difference (album), a 2005 power metal album Difference (computer science), a concept in computer science Difference (heraldry), any systematic way of distinguishing similar coats of arms belonging to members of the same family… …   Wikipedia

  • difference — I noun adverseness, antipathy, antithesis, antitheticalness, asymmetry, atypicality, breach, change, clash of temperament, clashing, conflict of opinion, contradiction, contradistinction, contraposition, contrariety, contrariness, contrast,… …   Law dictionary

  • difference — mid 14c., from O.Fr. difference (12c.) difference, distinction; argument, dispute, from L. differentia diversity, difference, from differentem (nom. differens), prp. of differre to set apart (see DIFFER (Cf. differ)). Sense of a quarrel first… …   Etymology dictionary

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