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Re: *specialty* and *speciality*

Posted by Lap of the Goddess on November 18, 2004

In Reply to: *specialty* and *speciality* posted by June on November 18, 2004

: Hello,

: Could anyone tell me the difference between
: *specialty* and *speciality*?

: Thanks

Depends on the dictionary you look up. In most it appears to be the same as the difference between an Alsatian and a German Shepherd - nothing, nada, nil, zip, zilch. So why do the two separate words exist. Beats the hell outta me. Chalk it up as being yet another oddity of the English language.

But in MW - which is definitely the overall fave of the guys here it says:

Main Entry: spe·ci·al·i·ty
Pronunciation: "spe-shE-'a-l&-tE
Function: noun
Inflected Form(s): plural -ties
1 : a special mark or quality
2 : a special object or class of objects
3 a : a special aptitude or skill b : SPECIALTY 3

and

Main Entry: spe·cial·ty
Pronunciation: 'spe-sh&l-tE
Function: noun
Inflected Form(s): plural -ties
Etymology: Middle English specialte, from Middle French especialté, from Late Latin specialitat-, specialitas, from Latin specialis special
1 : a distinctive mark or quality
2 a : a special object or class of objects: as : a legal agreement embodied in a sealed instrument : a product of a special kind or of special excellence b : the state of being special , distinctive, or peculiar
3 : something in which one specializes

Which still seems to be saying much the same thing, only more of it. ---GODDESS