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Friendship vs. Friend: Know the Difference

Shumaila Saeed
By Shumaila Saeed || Updated on December 25, 2023
Friendship is a mutual bond between people marked by affection, trust, and support, while a friend is an individual who shares this bond.
Friendship vs. Friend

Key Differences

Friendship is an interpersonal relationship characterized by mutual care, respect, and loyalty. In contrast, a friend is a person who participates in this relationship. Friendship is an abstract concept, while a friend is a concrete participant.
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Dec 05, 2023
Friendship involves shared experiences, emotional bonds, and mutual support. On the other hand, a friend is someone who contributes to these experiences. Friendship is the collective experience, while a friend is an individual within this dynamic.
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Dec 05, 2023
The strength of friendship depends on the depth of connection and understanding between individuals. Conversely, a friend is an individual who actively engages in nurturing this understanding. Friendship is the overall quality of the relationship, whereas a friend is a member of this relationship.
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Friendship can exist in various forms and intensities, from casual to deep bonds. A friend represents a single node within this spectrum. Friendship is a broad term encompassing many relationships, while a friend is a specific person within one of these relationships.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 05, 2023
Friendship is often evaluated by the trust, empathy, and companionship it offers. In contrast, a friend is evaluated by their individual contribution to these elements. Friendship is a measure of relational quality, whereas a friend is a contributor to this quality.
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Comparison Chart

Nature

A relational bond
An individual in that bond
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Abstract/Concrete

Abstract concept
Concrete entity
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Role

Collective experience
Individual participant
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Variety

Can exist in different forms
Represents one part of the spectrum
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Evaluation

Based on mutual trust and support
Based on individual contributions
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Friendship and Friend Definitions

Friendship

A close and affectionate relationship between people.
Their friendship grew stronger after they traveled together.
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Nov 24, 2023

Friend

A person whom one knows, likes, and trusts.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friendship

A connection marked by trust and companionship.
Years of shared experiences cemented their friendship.
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Nov 24, 2023

Friend

A person whom one knows; an acquaintance.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friendship

A bond of mutual support and understanding.
Their friendship was evident in how they helped each other in tough times.
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Nov 24, 2023
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Friend

A person with whom one is allied in a struggle or cause; a comrade.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friendship

A relationship of mutual affection between people.
Their friendship was admired by everyone who knew them.
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Nov 24, 2023

Friend

One who supports, sympathizes with, or patronizes a group, cause, or movement
Friends of the clean air movement.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friendship

The state of being friends.
Their friendship began in childhood and lasted a lifetime.
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Nov 24, 2023

Friend

Friend A member of the Society of Friends; a Quaker.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friendship

The quality or condition of being friends.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

(Informal) To add (someone) as a friend on a social networking website.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friendship

A friendly relationship
Formed new friendships at camp.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

(Archaic) To befriend.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friendship

Friendliness; good will
A policy of friendship toward other nations.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

A person, typically someone other than a family member, spouse or lover, whose company one enjoys and towards whom one feels affection.
John and I have been friends ever since we were roommates at college.
Trust is important between friends.
I used to find it hard to make friends when I was shy.
We became friends in the war and remain friends to this day.
We were friends with some girls from the other school and stayed friends with them.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friendship

(uncountable) The condition of being friends.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

An associate who provides assistance.
The Automobile Association is every motorist's friend.
The police is every law-abiding citizen's friend.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friendship

(countable) A friendly relationship, or a relationship as friends.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

A person with whom one is vaguely or indirectly acquainted.
A friend of a friend;
I added him as a friend on Facebook, but I hardly know
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Oct 19, 2023

Friendship

(uncountable) Good will.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

A person who backs or supports something.
I’m not a friend of cheap wine.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friendship

The state of being friends; friendly relation, or attachment, to a person, or between persons; affection arising from mutual esteem and good will; friendliness; amity; good will.
There is little friendship in the world.
There can be no friendship without confidence, and no confidence without integrity.
Preferred by friendship, and not chosen by sufficiency.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

(informal) An object or idea that can be used for good.
Fruit is your friend.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friendship

Kindly aid; help; assistance,
Some friendship will it [a hovel] lend you gainst the tempest.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

Used as a form of address when warning someone.
You’d better watch it, friend.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friendship

Aptness to unite; conformity; affinity; harmony; correspondence.
Those colors . . . have a friendship with each other.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

(object-oriented programming) A function or class granted special access to the private and protected members of another class.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friendship

The state of being friends
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Friend

(climbing) A spring-loaded camming device.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

(euphemistic) A lover; a boyfriend or girlfriend.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

A relative, a relation by blood or marriage.
Friends agree best at a distance.
Make friends of framet folk.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

To act as a friend to, to befriend; to be friendly to, to help.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

(transitive) To add (a person) to a list of friends on a social networking site; to officially designate (someone) as a friend.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

One who entertains for another such sentiments of esteem, respect, and affection that he seeks his society and welfare; a wellwisher; an intimate associate; sometimes, an attendant.
Want gives to know the flatterer from the friend.
A friend that sticketh closer than a brother.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

One not inimical or hostile; one not a foe or enemy; also, one of the same nation, party, kin, etc., whose friendly feelings may be assumed. The word is some times used as a term of friendly address.
Friend, how camest thou in hither?
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

One who looks propitiously on a cause, an institution, a project, and the like; a favorer; a promoter; as, a friend to commerce, to poetry, to an institution.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

One of a religious sect characterized by disuse of outward rites and an ordained ministry, by simplicity of dress and speech, and esp. by opposition to war and a desire to live at peace with all men. They are popularly called Quakers.
America was first visited by Friends in 1656.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

A paramour of either sex.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

To act as the friend of; to favor; to countenance; to befriend.
Fortune friends the bold.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

A person you know well and regard with affection and trust;
He was my best friend at the university
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

An associate who provides assistance;
He's a good ally in fight
They were friends of the workers
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

A person with whom you are acquainted;
I have trouble remembering the names of all my acquaintances
We are friends of the family
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

A person who backs a politician or a team etc.;
All their supporters came out for the game
They are friends of the library
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

A member of the Religious Society of Friends founded by George Fox (the Friends have never called themselves Quakers)
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

A person with whom one has a bond of mutual affection.
Jack is my friend; we've known each other since grade school.
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Nov 24, 2023

Friend

Someone who is not hostile and is on good terms with another.
She made a new friend at the workshop.
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Nov 24, 2023

Friend

A person who supports a cause, organization, or country by giving help.
He's a friend to many charitable organizations.
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Nov 24, 2023

Friend

A person with whom one is allied in a struggle or cause.
In this endeavor, he was my closest friend.
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Nov 24, 2023

Repeatedly Asked Queries

Can a friend exist outside the context of a friendship?

Yes, a person can be a friend even if the deeper aspects of friendship are not present.
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Dec 05, 2023

Is friendship always mutual?

Friendship ideally is mutual, but the depth of feelings can vary between friends.
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Dec 05, 2023

Can animals be friends?

In a broader sense, animals can form bonds that resemble friendship.
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Dec 05, 2023

Is it possible to have friendship without regular communication?

Yes, some friendships endure even with infrequent communication.
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Dec 05, 2023

Are online friends real friends?

Yes, online friends can form real and meaningful friendships.
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Dec 05, 2023

Can friendship exist without friends?

No, friends are essential participants in a friendship.
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Dec 05, 2023

Can friendship turn into love?

Yes, friendship can sometimes evolve into romantic love.
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Dec 05, 2023

Is it possible to have a friendship with a significant age difference?

Yes, friendships can cross age barriers.
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Dec 05, 2023

Can someone be a friend but not part of a significant friendship?

Yes, some friends are part of casual or less significant relationships.
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Dec 05, 2023

Does friendship change over time?

Yes, friendships can evolve, strengthen, or weaken over time.
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Dec 05, 2023

Can a family member be a friend?

Absolutely, family members can also form friendships.
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Dec 05, 2023

Can a friendship survive a major disagreement?

It can, depending on the resilience and understanding of the friends involved.
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Dec 05, 2023

Is it normal for friendships to end?

Yes, it's a natural part of life for some friendships to end.
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Dec 05, 2023

Is it important to have friends from diverse backgrounds?

Diversity in friendships can enrich one's perspective and experiences.
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Can competitive feelings harm a friendship?

Yes, unchecked competition can strain or damage a friendship.
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Dec 05, 2023

Is trust essential in a friendship?

Yes, trust is a foundational element of friendship.
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Dec 05, 2023

How many friends are necessary for a fulfilling life?

This varies greatly; quality often matters more than quantity.
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Dec 05, 2023

Are there cultural differences in how friendships are expressed?

Yes, cultural norms can influence how friendships are formed and maintained.
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Dec 05, 2023

Can friendships impact mental health?

Yes, positive friendships can greatly benefit mental health.
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Dec 05, 2023

Is it possible to rekindle an old friendship?

Yes, with mutual effort, old friendships can often be renewed.
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Dec 05, 2023

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About Author
Shumaila Saeed
Written by
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed, an expert content creator with 6 years of experience, specializes in distilling complex topics into easily digestible comparisons, shining a light on the nuances that both inform and educate readers with clarity and accuracy.

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