Skip to main content

Reciprocal vs Corresponding vs Correlative vs Complementary vs Complemental vs Convertible

Reciprocalcorrespondingcorrelativecomplementarycomplementalconvertible are not close synonyms, although in some instances they are interchangeable, and all are comparable in meaning like, equivalent, or similarly related to each other (as in kind, quality, or value).

Reciprocal (see also RECIPROCAL 1 ) implies that the likeness or equivalence of two things or of one thing to another rests on the fact of their being returns or its being a return in kind, value, or quality for what one side has given to the other.

Corresponding implies a likeness or equivalence proceeding from the fact that one answers to the other or conforms to it so that they are fitted to each other, or proportionate to or commensurate with each other, or in perfect accord with each other.

Correlative implies a close relationship rather than a likeness and is applicable chiefly to two things, or one of two things, which cannot exist independently of each other either because one logically implies the other or one cannot exist without the other.

In more casual use correlative may imply nothing more than so close a correspondence or relation between two or sometimes more things that they come naturally, necessarily, or logically together.

Complementary also implies a close relationship rather than a likeness; the term carries a strong suggestion that one thing is so necessary to another or to others that without it an entire or perfect whole is not possible.

Complemental has essentially the same meaning, differing only in applying usually to a quantitative completing.

Convertible implies so strong a likeness that the things, though not identical, are virtually interchangeable.