Acquaintance between persons supposes that each knows the other; we may know a public man by his
writings or speeches, and by sight, but can not claim acquaintance unless he personally knows us.
There may be pleasant acquaintance with little companionship; and conversely, much
companionship with little acquaintance, as between busy clerks at adjoining desks.
So there may be association in business without intimacy or friendship.
Acquaintance admits of many degrees, from a slight or passing to a familiar or intimate
acquaintance; but acquaintance unmodified commonly signifies less than
familiarity or intimacy.
As regards persons, familiarity is becoming restricted to the undesirable sense, as in the proverb,
"Familiarity breeds contempt;" hence, in personal relations, the word intimacy, which refers to
mutual knowledge of thought and feeling, is now uniformly preferred.
Friendship includes acquaintance with some degree of intimacy, and ordinarily
companionship, though in a wider sense friendship may exist between those who have never met,
but know each other only by word and deed.
Acquaintance does not involve friendship, for one may be well acquainted with an enemy.
Fellowship involves not merely acquaintance and companionship, but sympathy as
well. There may be much friendship without much fellowship, as between those whose homes or
pursuits are far apart.
There may be pleasant fellowship which does not reach the fulness of friendship.
As regards studies, pursuits, etc., acquaintance is less than familiarity, which supposes
minute knowledge of particulars, arising often from long experience or
Antonyms for Acquaintance
ignorance, ignoring, inexperience, unfamiliarity.
Acquaintance with a subject; of one person with another;
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