Dictionary

differentia

noun dif·fer·en·tia \ˌdi-fə-ˈren(t)-sh(ē-)ə\
plural dif·fer·en·ti·ae\-shē-ˌē, -shē-ˌī\

Definition of DIFFERENTIA

:  an element, feature, or factor that distinguishes one entity, state, or class from another; especially :  a characteristic trait distinguishing a species from other species of the same genus

Examples of DIFFERENTIA

  1. <a list of the chief differentiae between a controlling cult and a legitimate religious sect>

Origin of DIFFERENTIA

Latin, difference, from different-, differens
First Known Use: 1551

differentia

noun dif·fer·en·tia \ˌdif-ə-ˈren-ch(ē-)ə\   (Medical Dictionary)
plural dif·fer·en·ti·ae \-chē-ˌē, -chē-ˌī\

Medical Definition of DIFFERENTIA

:  the element, feature, or factor that distinguishes one entity, state, or class from another; especially :  a characteristic trait distinguishing a species from other species of the same genus

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