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identify

[ahy-den-tuh-fahy, ih-den-] /aɪˈdɛn təˌfaɪ, ɪˈdɛn-/
verb (used with object), identified, identifying.
1.
to recognize or establish as being a particular person or thing; verify the identity of:
to identify handwriting; to identify the bearer of a check.
2.
to serve as a means of identification for:
His gruff voice quickly identified him.
3.
to make, represent to be, or regard or treat as the same or identical:
They identified Jones with the progress of the company.
4.
to associate in name, feeling, interest, action, etc. (usually followed by with):
He preferred not to identify himself with that group.
5.
Biology. to determine to what group (a given specimen) belongs.
6.
Psychology. to associate (one or oneself) with another person or a group of persons by identification.
verb (used without object), identified, identifying.
7.
to experience psychological identification:
The audience identified with the play's characters.
Origin
1635-1645
1635-45; < Medieval Latin identificāre, equivalent to identi(tās) identity + -ficāre -fy
Related forms
identifiable, adjective
identifiability, identifiableness, noun
identifier, noun
overidentify, verb, overidentified, overidentifying.
preidentify, verb (used with object), preidentified, preidentifying.
reidentify, verb (used with object), reidentified, reidentifying.
unidentifiable, adjective
unidentifiably, adverb
unidentified, adjective
unidentifying, adjective
well-identified, adjective
Synonyms
1. distinguish, place, know, determine.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for unidentifying

identify

/aɪˈdɛntɪˌfaɪ/
verb (mainly transitive) -fies, -fying, -fied
1.
to prove or recognize as being a certain person or thing; determine the identity of
2.
to consider as the same or equivalent
3.
(also intransitive) often foll by with. to consider (oneself) as similar to another
4.
to determine the taxonomic classification of (a plant or animal)
5.
(psychol) (intransitive) usually foll by with. to engage in identification
Derived Forms
identifiable, adjective
identifiably, adverb
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for unidentifying

identify

v.

1640s, "regard as the same," from French identifier, from identité (see identity). Sense of "recognize" first recorded 1769. Meaning "make one (with), associate (oneself)" is from 1780. Sense of "serve as means of identification" is attested by 1886. Related: Identified; identifying.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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