Is there a tidy way to represent the meaning of the following?

A differs from B (in some substantive/relevant way), even though they do share non-trivial similarities.

  • 1
    This could do with a real world example of what you mean. Aug 30, 2021 at 18:24
  • @KillingTime: This question is motivated by my preceding (also first on here) question, the example in that being "dietary needs of dogs as compared to people" as pertaining to compatibility in one direction. There are surely boundless more cases of which many fine examples; such as wheeled vehicles that are powered by a human versus internal combustion engine, as pertaining to practicality in one or+ practical matters (commuting/transports/other considerations).
    – 11qq00
    Aug 30, 2021 at 18:37

2 Answers 2


There’s not going to be one word for this, but here’s a shorter version:

Despite similarities, A and B differ substantively.

Be sure you mean substantive (meaningful) rather than substantial (large) — and note the pronunciation of substantively (in case you have to read your paper aloud).

  • Aye, that is shorter, thankyou! What if the given construction is meant to complement another point (rather than stand on its own), e.g. "It's not a bad idea to give A some of the same treatment as you do B, but not too much." with the reason being {your answer}. Would it be appropriate colloquially to pair the premise/sub-premise and conclusion into single sentence by linking with an em-dash (or a pause when spoken) and a word like "but"? (My particular motivation isn't an academic paper, but recognizing where/how different tones be appropriate is definitely an important skill.)
    – 11qq00
    Aug 30, 2021 at 20:43
  • Show me this sentence you're envisioning — with its em dash and/or but. Aug 30, 2021 at 20:52
  • “My dogs relish in much of foods I eat, as I oft oblige them —but in moderation, since despite the similarities, dogs' and humans' dietary needs differ substantively (and also, somewhat related, so that they don't get fat).”
    – 11qq00
    Aug 30, 2021 at 20:59
  • My dogs relish much of the food I eat. But I oblige them in moderation; despite similarities, the dietary needs of dogs and humans are substantively different. Aug 30, 2021 at 21:23
  • They can't relish the food unless you oblige them, so there's no need to say that you oblige them. You can go straight to how you oblige them. Aug 30, 2021 at 21:33

A differs substantially from B, although they do have some non-trivial similarities.
A differs substantially from B, although they do share some non-trivial features.

(I prefer have similarities to share similarities).

substantially (adv.)

In essence; essentially, intrinsically. OED

If substantially is too strong, I suggest A differs significantly from B, although ...

  • How would you state that "Marie has different needs (or ratios of needs) than Casey (even though they do share overlapping needs in the same context), to an extent that especial attention must be given in taking care of Marie's needs with the same figurative shoe size as you would for Casey.".
    – 11qq00
    Aug 30, 2021 at 19:04
  • I would convey this with the choice of the adverb: substantially/significantly/very/rather/somewhat/slightly, etc.... different needs. Then you could go on to clarify/explain.
    – DjinTonic
    Aug 30, 2021 at 19:06

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