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.

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  • Distinguished — Dis*tin guished, a. 1. Marked; special. [1913 Webster] The most distinguished politeness. Mad. D Arblay. [1913 Webster] 2. Separated from others by distinct difference; having, or indicating, superiority; eminent or known; illustrious; applied to …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • distinguished — index best, certain (specific), conspicuous, discrete, disparate, elegant, famous, illustrious …   Law dictionary

  • distinguished — c.1600, separate, pp. adj. from DISTINGUISH (Cf. distinguish). Sense of famous, celebrated, recorded from 1714; meaning having an air of distinction is from 1748 …   Etymology dictionary

  • distinguished  — [adj] famous, outstanding acclaimed, aristocratic, arresting, big name*, brilliant, celebrated, conspicuous, dignified, distingué, eminent, especial, esteemed, extraordinary, famed, foremost, glorious, great, highly regarded, honored, illustrious …   New thesaurus

  • distinguished — ► ADJECTIVE 1) dignified in appearance. 2) successful and commanding great respect …   English terms dictionary

  • distinguished — [di stiŋ′gwisht] adj. 1. celebrated; eminent 2. having an air of distinction SYN. FAMOUS …   English World dictionary

  • distinguished — [[t]dɪstɪ̱ŋgwɪʃt[/t]] 1) ADJ GRADED If you describe a person or their work as distinguished, you mean that they have been very successful in their career and have a good reputation. ...a distinguished academic family. ...a distinguished career.… …   English dictionary

  • distinguished — dis|tin|guished [ dı stıŋgwıʃt ] adjective * 1. ) successful and respected by many people: the distinguished painter known as Grandma Moses a distinguished career in the diplomatic service 2. ) looking impressive and as if you deserve respect.… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • distinguished — adjective 1 very successful and therefore respected and admired: a school with a distinguished academic record see famous 2 someone who has a distinguished appearance looks important in a way that makes you respect and admire them: a tall,… …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

  • distinguished */ — UK [dɪˈstɪŋɡwɪʃt] / US adjective 1) successful and respected by many people the distinguished painter known as Grandma Moses a distinguished career in the diplomatic service 2) looking impressive and as if you deserve respect. This word is not… …   English dictionary

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