1 way in which people/things are not the same
big, broad, considerable, dramatic, enormous, great, huge, large, major, profound, radical, real, sharp, substantial, vast, wide

A little extra care makes a big difference.

I noticed a real difference in his attitude.

basic, essential, fundamental
crucial, important, key, main, significant

A small number of additional jobs can make a crucial difference to economic conditions.

We found no significant difference between the two groups.

clear, distinct, marked, notable, noticeable, observed, obvious, striking

There is a striking difference between eastern and western Europe.

minor, slight, small, subtle
qualitative, statistical
national, regional
age, class, cultural, ethnic, gender, genetic, physical, psychological, racial, sex, social
historical, ideological, political
temperature, time

What's the time difference between New York and Tokyo?


The new central heating has made an enormous difference to the house.

What difference does it make if he doesn't have a car?


One tiny mistake when you're climbing could mean the difference between life and death.

emphasize, exaggerate, focus on, highlight, stress, underline

We should be focusing on what we have in common rather than emphasizing our differences.

appreciate, be aware of, detect, feel, find, know, note, notice, observe, perceive, recognize, see, spot, tell

I found very little difference in price.

Only an expert would know the difference between the male and the female.

Can you spot the difference between these two photos?

It's difficult to tell the difference between butterflies and moths.

explain, illustrate
examine, explore, look at

The study explores the differences between the way girls and boys talk.

demonstrate, exhibit (formal), indicate, reveal, show

The questionnaire showed vast differences in what kind of product people want.

mark, reflect

Our different attitudes to life reflect the differences in our backgrounds.

be, lie

The difference lies in the way the fruit is prepared.

arise (from sth), exist

The differences in size arise from the amount of sunshine each plant gets.

explain sth, reflect sth, suggest sth
difference among

There are few important policy differences among the main parties.

difference between

There's a big difference between reading about skiing and doing it yourself.

difference from

He was very aware of his difference from the other children.

difference in

The difference in price is not very significant.

difference of

a crucial difference of emphasis

difference with

There is one key difference with the earlier version of the software.

The difference with this information service is that it's free.

a … with a difference

If you want a travel destination with a difference, come to Iceland.

all the difference in the world

There's all the difference in the world between choosing to do something and being forced to do it.

a great deal of difference, a lot of difference

The extra money will make a lot of difference to us.

make all the difference

Just five minutes' exercise a day could make all the difference.

no difference, not much difference

There's not much difference between baseball and softball.

2 sum of money in addition to the sum expected

If you decide on the more expensive model, you can bring this one back and pay the difference.

make up

He didn't have enough money, but his aunt agreed to make up the difference.


He sold the car for more than he'd paid and pocketed the difference.

split (figurative)

I wanted to leave early and Ian wanted to leave late, so we split the difference and left at noon.

3 disagreement
irreconcilable, major, serious, sharp
minor, slight

These talks aim to resolve the outstanding differences between the two sides.


They have had some minor differences, but in general they get on well together.

make up (BrE), patch up, put aside, reconcile, resolve, settle

We're going to get the two sides together to see if they can't settle their differences.

arise, emerge, occur

Differences may arise when the young people do not have the same expectations as their parents.


Although the talks were generally successful, differences remain between the groups.

difference as to, difference over

There were some differences as to how to deal with the crisis.

a difference of opinion

She and Luke had a difference of opinion over how much money they should spend.

have your differences

Like any married couple, we have our differences.

Collocations dictionary. 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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