Distinguish Dis*tin"guish, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Distinguished}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Distinguishing}.] [F. distinguer, L. distinguere, distinctum; di- = dis- + stinguere to quench, extinguish; prob. orig., to prick, and so akin to G. stechen, E. stick, and perh. sting. Cf. {Extinguish}.] 1. Not set apart from others by visible marks; to make distinctive or discernible by exhibiting differences; to mark off by some characteristic. [1913 Webster]

Not more distinguished by her purple vest, Than by the charming features of her face. --Dryden. [1913 Webster]

Milton has distinguished the sweetbrier and the eglantine. --Nares. [1913 Webster]

2. To separate by definition of terms or logical division of a subject with regard to difference; as, to distinguish sounds into high and low. [1913 Webster]

Moses distinguished the causes of the flood into those that belong to the heavens, and those that belong to the earth. --T. Burnet. [1913 Webster]

3. To recognize or discern by marks, signs, or characteristic quality or qualities; to know and discriminate (anything) from other things with which it might be confounded; as, to distinguish the sound of a drum. [1913 Webster]

We are enabled to distinguish good from evil, as well as truth from falsehood. --Watts. [1913 Webster]

Nor more can you distinguish of a man, Than of his outward show. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

4. To constitute a difference; to make to differ. [1913 Webster]

Who distinguisheth thee? --1 Cor. iv. 7. (Douay version). [1913 Webster]

5. To separate from others by a mark of honor; to make eminent or known; to confer distinction upon; -- with by or for.``To distinguish themselves by means never tried before.'' --Johnson.

Syn: To mark; discriminate; differentiate; characterize; discern; perceive; signalize; honor; glorify. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Distinguishing — Dis*tin guish*ing, a. Constituting difference, or distinction from everything else; distinctive; peculiar; characteristic. [1913 Webster] The distinguishing doctrines of our holy religion. Locke. [1913 Webster] {Distinguishing pennant} (Naut.), a …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • distinguishing — distinguishing; un·distinguishing; …   English syllables

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  • Distinguishing — For Wikipedia disambiguating see Wikipedia:Disambiguation. In law, to distinguish a case means to contrast the facts of the case before the court from the facts of a case of precedent where there is an apparent similarity. By successfully… …   Wikipedia

  • distinguishing — distinguishingly, adv. /di sting gwi shing/, adj. distinctive; characteristic, as a definitive feature of an individual or group: Intricate rhyming is a distinguishing feature of her poetry. [1660 70; DISTINGUISH + ING2] * * * …   Universalium

  • distinguishing — adj. Distinguishing is used with these nouns: ↑attribute, ↑characteristic, ↑feature, ↑mark …   Collocations dictionary

  • distinguishing — dis|tin|guish|ing [ dı stıŋgwıʃıŋ ] adjective a distinguishing feature, mark etc. makes someone or something clearly different from other similar people or things …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • distinguishing — adjective does he have any distinguishing features, such as a scar or a birthmark? Syn: distinctive, differentiating, characteristic, typical, peculiar, singular, unique …   Thesaurus of popular words

  • distinguishing — UK [dɪˈstɪŋɡwɪʃɪŋ] / US adjective a distinguishing feature, mark etc makes someone or something clearly different from other similar people or things …   English dictionary

  • distinguishing — adjective That serves to distinguish …   Wiktionary

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