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An individual is a person or a specific object. Individuality (or selfhood) is the state or quality of being an individual; particularly of being a person separate from other persons and possessing his or her own needs or goals. The exact definition of an individual is important in the fields of biology, law, and philosophy.

From the 15th century and earlier (and also today within the fields of statistics and metaphysics) individual meant "indivisible", typically describing any numerically singular thing, but sometimes meaning "a person". From the 17th century on, individual indicates separateness, as in individualism.<ref>Abbs 1986, cited in Klein 2005, pp.26-27</ref>

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