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 heat, or of light; what is the difference between the innocent and the guilty? "Differencies of administration, but the same Lord." (1 Cor. Xii. 5)
2. Disagreement in opinion; dissension; controversy; quarrel; hence, cause of dissension; matter in controversy. "What was the difference? It was a contention in public." (Shak) "Away therefore went I with the constable, leaving the old warden and the young constable to compose their difference as they could." (T. Ellwood)
3. That by which one thing differs from another; that which distinguishes or causes to differ;; mark of distinction; characteristic quality; specific attribute. "The marks and differences of sovereignty." (Davies)
Origin: F. Difference, L. Differentia.
(01 Mar 1998)
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