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Obscurity vs. Shadow — What's the Difference?

Obscurity vs. Shadow — What's the Difference?

Difference Between Obscurity and Shadow

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Obscurity

Deficiency or absence of light; darkness.

Shadow

A shadow is a dark (real image) area where light from a light source is blocked by an opaque object. It occupies all of the three-dimensional volume behind an object with light in front of it.

Obscurity

The quality or condition of being unknown
"Even utter obscurity need not be an obstacle to [political] success" (New Republic).

Shadow

A dark area or shape made by an object blocking rays of light.

Obscurity

One that is unknown.
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Shadow

The darkness or diminished light caused by the blocking of a light source
The back yard is in shadow all day long.

Obscurity

The quality or condition of being imperfectly known or difficult to understand
"writings meant to be understood ... by all, composed without deliberate obscurity or hidden motives" (National Review).

Shadow

A darker area in a picture or photograph.

Obscurity

An instance of being imperfectly known or difficult to understand.

Shadow

Shadows The darkness following sunset.

Obscurity

(literary) Darkness; the absence of light.

Shadow

Often shadows A darkened area of skin under the eye.

Obscurity

The state of being unknown; a thing that is unknown.

Shadow

An incipient growth of beard that makes the skin look darker.

Obscurity

The quality of being difficult to understand; a thing that is difficult to understand.

Shadow

A feeling or cause of gloom or unhappiness
The argument cast a shadow on their friendship.

Obscurity

The quality or state of being obscure.
You are not for obscurity designed.
They were now brought forth from obscurity, to be contemplated by artists with admiration and despair.

Shadow

A nearby or adjoining region; vicinity
Grew up in the shadow of the ballpark.

Obscurity

The quality of being unclear or abstruse and hard to understand

Shadow

A dominating presence or influence
Spent years working in the shadow of the lab director.

Obscurity

An obscure and unimportant standing; not well known;
He worked in obscurity for many years

Shadow

An imitation or inferior version
"The defenders of the Japanese home islands were already a shadow of the fighting forces American soldiers had encountered elsewhere" (James Carroll).

Obscurity

The state of being indistinct or indefinite for lack of adequate illumination

Shadow

A phantom; a ghost.

Shadow

An unsubstantial object of pursuit
Spent the last part of his career chasing shadows.

Shadow

One, such as a detective or spy, that follows or trails another.

Shadow

A constant companion.

Shadow

(Sports) A player who guards an opponent closely.

Shadow

A faint indication; a foreshadowing
A shadow of things to come.

Shadow

An insignificant portion or amount; a trace
Beyond a shadow of a doubt.

Shadow

Shelter; protection
Under the shadow of their corporate sponsor.

Shadow

To cast a shadow on; darken or shade
The leaves of the trees shadowed the ferns below.

Shadow

To make gloomy or troubled, especially over time
He was shadowed by self-doubt.

Shadow

To represent vaguely, mysteriously, or prophetically; foreshadow.

Shadow

To darken in a painting or drawing; shade in.

Shadow

To follow, especially in secret; trail.

Shadow

(Sports) To guard (an opponent) closely throughout the playing area.

Shadow

To become downcast or gloomy
Her face shadowed with sorrow.

Shadow

Not having official status
A shadow government of exiled leaders.
A shadow cabinet.

Shadow

A dark image projected onto a surface where light (or other radiation) is blocked by the shade of an object.
My shadow lengthened as the sun began to set.
The X-ray showed a shadow on his lung.

Shadow

Relative darkness, especially as caused by the interruption of light; gloom; obscurity.
I immediately jumped into shadow as I saw them approach.

Shadow

An area protected by an obstacle (likened to an object blocking out sunlight).
The mountains block the passage of rain-producing weather systems and cast a "shadow" of dryness behind them.

Shadow

(obsolete) A reflected image, as in a mirror or in water.

Shadow

(figurative) That which looms as though a shadow.
I don't have a shadow of doubt in my mind that my plan will succeed.
The shadow of fear of my being outed always affects how I live my life.
I lived in her shadow my whole life.

Shadow

A small degree; a shade.
He did not give even a shadow of respect to the professor.

Shadow

An imperfect and faint representation.
He came back from war the shadow of a man.
The neopagan ritual was only a pale shadow of the ones the Greeks held thousands of years ago.

Shadow

A trainee, assigned to work with an experienced officer.

Shadow

One who secretly or furtively follows another.
The constable was promoted to working as a shadow for the Royals.

Shadow

An inseparable companion.

Shadow

(typography) A drop shadow effect applied to lettering in word processors etc.

Shadow

An influence, especially a pervasive or a negative one.

Shadow

A spirit; a ghost; a shade.

Shadow

An uninvited guest accompanying one who was invited.

Shadow

An unconscious aspect of the personality.

Shadow

(transitive) To shade, cloud, or darken.
The artist chose to shadow this corner of the painting.

Shadow

(transitive) To block light or radio transmission from.
Looks like that cloud's going to shadow us.

Shadow

To secretly or discreetly track or follow another, to keep under surveillance.

Shadow

(transitive) To represent faintly and imperfectly.

Shadow

(transitive) To hide; to conceal.

Shadow

(transitive) To accompany (a professional) during the working day, so as to learn about an occupation one intends to take up.

Shadow

To make (an identifier, usually a variable) inaccessible by declaring another of the same name within the scope of the first.

Shadow

To apply the shadowing process to (the contents of ROM).

Shadow

Unofficial, informal, unauthorized, but acting as though it were.
The human resources department has a shadow information technology group without headquarters knowledge.

Shadow

Having power or influence, but not widely known or recognized.
The director has been giving shadow leadership to the other group's project to ensure its success.
The illuminati shadow group has been pulling strings from behind the scenes.

Shadow

(politics) Acting in a leadership role before being formally recognized.
The shadow cabinet cannot agree on the terms of the agreement due immediately after they are sworn in.
The insurgents’ shadow government is being crippled by the federal military strikes.

Shadow

Part of, or related to, the opposition in government.

Shadow

Darkness; shade; obscurity.
Night's sable shadows from the ocean rise.

Shadow

A shaded place; shelter; protection; security.
In secret shadow from the sunny ray,On a sweet bed of lilies softly laid.

Shadow

A reflected image, as in a mirror or in water.

Shadow

That which follows or attends a person or thing like a shadow; an inseparable companion; hence, an obsequious follower.
Sin and her shadow Death.

Shadow

A spirit; a ghost; a shade; a phantom.

Shadow

An imperfect and faint representation; adumbration; indistinct image; dim bodying forth; hence, mystical representation; type.
The law having a shadow of good things to come.
[Types] and shadows of that destined seed.

Shadow

A small degree; a shade.

Shadow

An uninvited guest coming with one who is invited.
I must not have my board pastered with shadowsThat under other men's protection break inWithout invitement.

Shadow

To cut off light from; to put in shade; to shade; to throw a shadow upon; to overspead with obscurity.
The warlike elf much wondered at this tree,So fair and great, that shadowed all the ground.

Shadow

To conceal; to hide; to screen.
Let every soldier hew him down a bough.And bear't before him; thereby shall we shadowThe numbers of our host.

Shadow

To protect; to shelter from danger; to shroud.
Shadowing their right under your wings of war.

Shadow

To mark with gradations of light or color; to shade.

Shadow

To represent faintly or imperfectly; to adumbrate; hence, to represent typically.
Augustus is shadowed in the person of æneas.

Shadow

To cloud; to darken; to cast a gloom over.
The shadowed livery of the burnished sun.
Why sad?I must not see the face O love thus shadowed.

Shadow

To attend as closely as a shadow; to follow and watch closely, especially in a secret or unobserved manner; as, a detective shadows a criminal.

Shadow

Shade within clear boundaries

Shadow

An unilluminated area;
He moved off into the darkness

Shadow

Something existing in perception only;
A ghostly apparition at midnight

Shadow

A premonition of something adverse;
A shadow over his happiness

Shadow

An indication that something has been present;
There wasn't a trace of evidence for the claim
A tincture of condescension

Shadow

Refuge from danger or observation;
He felt secure in his father's shadow

Shadow

A dominating and pervasive presence;
He received little recognition working in the shadow of his father

Shadow

A spy employed to follow someone and report their movements

Shadow

An inseparable companion;
The poor child was his mother's shadow

Shadow

Follow, usually without the person's knowledge;
The police are shadowing her

Shadow

Cast a shadow over

Shadow

Make appear small by comparison;
This year's debt dwarves that of last year

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