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Meaning & Definition of Distinguish in English

English

Distinguish

/dɪstɪŋgwɪʃ/

verb

1. Mark as different

  • "We distinguish several kinds of maple"
    synonym:
  • distinguish
  • ,
  • separate
  • ,
  • differentiate
  • ,
  • secern
  • ,
  • secernate
  • ,
  • severalize
  • ,
  • severalise
  • ,
  • tell
  • ,
  • tell apart

2. Detect with the senses

  • "The fleeing convicts were picked out of the darkness by the watchful prison guards"
  • "I can't make out the faces in this photograph"
    synonym:
  • spot
  • ,
  • recognize
  • ,
  • recognise
  • ,
  • distinguish
  • ,
  • discern
  • ,
  • pick out
  • ,
  • make out
  • ,
  • tell apart

3. Be a distinctive feature, attribute, or trait

  • Sometimes in a very positive sense
  • "His modesty distinguishes him from his peers"
    synonym:
  • distinguish
  • ,
  • mark
  • ,
  • differentiate

4. Make conspicuous or noteworthy

    synonym:
  • signalize
  • ,
  • signalise
  • ,
  • distinguish

5. Identify as in botany or biology, for example

    synonym:
  • identify
  • ,
  • discover
  • ,
  • key
  • ,
  • key out
  • ,
  • distinguish
  • ,
  • describe
  • ,
  • name

Examples of using

I think to clearly distinguish opinion from fact is important.
It is easy to distinguish good from evil.
To distinguish right from wrong is difficult.