1325-75;Middle Englishdifferren to distinguish < Middle Frenchdifferer to put off, distinguish, Latindifferre to bear apart, put off, delay (see defer1) be different, equivalent to dif-dif- + ferre to bear
late 14c., from O.Fr. diferer, from L. differre "to set apart, differ," from dis- "away from" + ferre "carry" (see infer). Two senses that were present in L. have gone separate ways in Eng. since c.1500 with defer (transitive) and differ (intransitive). Related: Differed; differing.