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Difference between consequence and impact??

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    • Thread Starter

    I've been set a series of questions regarding illegitimacy in the 19th century.

    One of the questions is what were the causes, consequences and impacts of illegitimacy.

    But what is the difference between consequence and impact? They seem to mean almost the same thing.

    OED defines them as:

    1. a result or effect, typically one that is unwelcome or unpleasant: abrupt withdrawal of drug treatment can have serious consequences | many have been laid off from work as a consequence of government policies.
    2. [mass noun] [usu. with negative] importance or relevance: the past is of no consequence.


    2. a marked effect or influence: our regional measures have had a significant impact on unemployment.
    Maybe impact is more forceful/marked/long lasting than consequence? :erm:
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