Difference between Ontology and Taxonomy

Ontology and taxonomy are two completely different terms. The former is a branch of metaphysics which is related to the study of existence on earth whereas the latter refers to the classification of the living organism into different groups according to their physical characteristics.

Ontology has a great significance in the study of beings and reality because of its relationship withphilosophy. On the other hand, taxonomy is a discipline which is widely used in biological sciences to categorise the living organisms into specific classes or groups according to their traits and features. Additionally, ontology is quite an old term as compared to taxonomy.


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    It is a philosophical study of nature of being or existence on earth. It has been considered as a main part of metaphysics which is a branch of philosophy. It deals with the questions related to the existence of entities and how they can be organised into different groups according to their hierarchy. After classifying the organisms into hierarchy, it helps to further classify them according to their differences and similarities.

    It becomes fundamental to a lot of branches of philosophy when applied to nouns like space, time, happiness, causality, electrons, energy, contract, truth, and God. Furthermore, there are basically four types of ontology which include upper ontology, domain ontology, interface ontology and process ontology.

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    It is study which helps to classify organisms into groups according to their shared characteristics and give names to those groups. Every group of the organisms is assigned a place which can be added up to make a super group of a higher order. Thus, a hierarchy of different living things is formed. The groups which are created are known as taxa.

    It can also be defined as a field of science which includes description, recognition, nomenclature and classification of organisms.

    It has been considered as the world’s oldest profession as  man started giving names to the living things in his surroundings just after he was able to communicate. In addition, it has great importance in biodiversity and conservation which are main branches of applied biology.

    It is comprehensively practised by biologists (called as taxonomists) to create groups of organisms and to separate them according to their physical outlook and habits. The taxonomists have made the biological study of living organisms a lot easier by dividing them into different groups.

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