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Claim vs Title vs Pretension vs Pretense

Claim, title, pretension, pretense are comparable when they denote an actual or alleged right to demand something as one’s possession, quality, power, or prerogative.

Claim carries the strongest implication of any of these terms of a demand for recognition; only the context can indicate whether that demand is regarded as justifiable or not or whether the right is actually asserted by the person involved.

Claim also occurs in a more concrete sense as denoting the property or possession for which one sets up a claim.

Title (see also NAME), on the other hand, distinctively imputes validity or justice to the claim, or its substantiation in law or in reason.

Pretension (see also PRETENSE, AMBITION) is sometimes used in place of claim and less often, in place of title.

Very often, however, pretension connotes a lack of warrant or a weakness in the claim and may attribute to it a measure of hypocrisy or deceit.

Pretense has become rare in the sense of claim (see PRETENSE). Usually the term applies to an asserted claim, but it may apply to a claim that is tacitly made in that one is assumed by another to be something that one is not or to have a right that one does not actually possess.