distinction noun

1 clear difference

ADJ. critical, crucial, important, key, main, major, vital | basic, essential, fundamental, underlying | clear, clear-cut, definite, marked, obvious, real, rigid, sharp, strong | fine, subtle | broad, general | crude, simple | logical, valid | useful | arbitrary, artificial | invidious making invidious distinctions between the ‘deserving’ and the ‘undeserving’ poor | absolute Is there always an absolute distinction between right and wrong? | conventional, old, traditional the conventional distinction between pure and applied science | formal | conceptual | theoretical | class, cultural, gender, moral

VERB + DISTINCTION draw, make She draws an important distinction between the different kinds of illness. | recognize, see We can see a sharp distinction between ambition and greed. | blur blurring the distinction between amateur and professional players

DISTINCTION + VERB lie Cultural distinctions lie at the heart of these issues.

PREP. without ~ All groups are entitled to this money without distinction (= without a difference being made between them). | ~ between

2 excellence/fame

ADJ. considerable, great | modest | dubious | rare | unique | added | academic, intellectual, professional, social Wearing the county tie was a mark of modest social distinction.

VERB + DISTINCTION have He has the dubious distinction of being the first railway baron to go bankrupt. | achieve She achieved distinction in several fields of scholarship. | add Fennel leaves add distinction to any dish.

PREP. of ~ She is a historian of great distinction. | with ~ He served with distinction in the First World War.