noun (plural -mies) Etymology: Greek dichotomia, from dichotomos Date: 1610 1. a division into two especially mutually exclusive or contradictory groups or entities <
the dichotomy between theory and practice
; also the process or practice of making such a division <
dichotomy of the population into two opposed classes
2. the phase of the moon or an inferior planet in which half its disk appears illuminated 3. a. bifurcation; especially repeated bifurcation (as of a plant's stem) b. a system of branching in which the main axis forks repeatedly into two branches c. branching of an ancestral line into two equal diverging branches 4. something with seemingly contradictory qualities <
it's a dichotomy, this opulent Ritz-style luxury in a place that fronts on a boat harbor — Jean T. Barrett

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Dichotomy — Di*chot o*my, n. [Gr. ?, fr. ?: cf. F. dichotomie. See {Dichotomous}.] 1. A cutting in two; a division. [1913 Webster] A general breach or dichotomy with their church. Sir T. Browne. [1913 Webster] 2. Division or distribution of genera into two… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • dichotomy — I noun bifurcation, bipartition, bisection, dissection, divarication, division, halving, separation, severance, split, subdivision II index disassociation, split Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • dichotomy — c.1600, from Gk. dichotomia a cutting in half, from dicha in two, asunder (related to dis twice ) + temnein to cut (see TOME (Cf. tome)) …   Etymology dictionary

  • dichotomy — noun being twofold; a classification into two opposed parts or subclasses the dichotomy between eastern and western culture • Syn: ↑duality • Derivationally related forms: ↑dual (for: ↑duality), ↑dichotomous, ↑ …   Useful english dictionary

  • Dichotomy — An example of a dichotomy is the partition of a scene into figure and ground – the letters are foreground or figure; the rest is the background. A dichotomy is any splitting of a whole into exactly two non overlapping parts, meaning it is a… …   Wikipedia

  • dichotomy — di|chot|o|my [daıˈkɔtəmi US ˈka: ] n plural dichotomies formal [Date: 1500 1600; : Greek; Origin: dichotomia, from dichotomos cut in two ] the difference between two things or ideas that are completely opposite dichotomy between ▪ a dichotomy… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • dichotomy — [[t]daɪkɒ̱təmi[/t]] dichotomies N COUNT: usu sing, oft N between pl n If there is a dichotomy between two things, there is a very great difference or opposition between them. [FORMAL] There is a dichotomy between the academic world and the… …   English dictionary

  • dichotomy — UK [daɪˈkɒtəmɪ] / US [daɪˈkɑtəmɪ] noun [countable] Word forms dichotomy : singular dichotomy plural dichotomies formal a difference between two opposite things or ideas …   English dictionary

  • dichotomy — dichotomic /duy keuh tom ik/, adj. dichotomically, adv. /duy kot euh mee/, n., pl. dichotomies. 1. division into two parts, kinds, etc.; subdivision into halves or pairs. 2. division into two mutually exclusive, opposed, or contradictory groups:… …   Universalium

  • dichotomy — (Roget s 3 Superthesaurus) (VOCABULARY WORD) n. [di KOT uh me] a division of two distinctly different or opposite parts, groups, opinions, etc. There was a dichotomy of opinions between the races. SYN.: division, split, subdivision, disagreement …   English dictionary for students

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