The DICT Development Group
5 definitions found
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :
General \Gen"er*al\, a. [F. g['e]n['e]ral, fr. L. generalis. See
1. Relating to a genus or kind; pertaining to a whole class
or order; as, a general law of animal or vegetable
2. Comprehending many species or individuals; not special or
particular; including all particulars; as, a general
inference or conclusion.
3. Not restrained or limited to a precise import; not
specific; vague; indefinite; lax in signification; as, a
loose and general expression.
4. Common to many, or the greatest number; widely spread;
prevalent; extensive, though not universal; as, a general
opinion; a general custom.
This general applause and cheerful shout
Argue your wisdom and your love to Richard. --Shak.
5. Having a relation to all; common to the whole; as, Adam,
our general sire. --Milton.
6. As a whole; in gross; for the most part.
His general behavior vain, ridiculous. --Shak.
7. Usual; common, on most occasions; as, his general habit or
Note: The word general, annexed to a name of office, usually
denotes chief or superior; as, attorney-general;
adjutant general; commissary general; quartermaster
general; vicar-general, etc.
General agent (Law), an agent whom a principal employs to
transact all his business of a particular kind, or to act
in his affairs generally.
General assembly. See the Note under Assembly.
General average, General Court. See under Average,
General court-martial (Mil.), the highest military and
naval judicial tribunal.
General dealer (Com.), a shopkeeper who deals in all
articles in common use.
General demurrer (Law), a demurrer which objects to a
pleading in general terms, as insufficient, without
specifying the defects. --Abbott.
General epistle, a canonical epistle.
General guides (Mil.), two sergeants (called the right, and
the left, general guide) posted opposite the right and
left flanks of an infantry battalion, to preserve accuracy
in marching. --Farrow.
General hospitals (Mil.), hospitals established to receive
sick and wounded sent from the field hospitals. --Farrow.
General issue (Law), an issue made by a general plea, which
traverses the whole declaration or indictment at once,
without offering any special matter to evade it.
General lien (Law), a right to detain a chattel, etc.,
until payment is made of any balance due on a general
General officer (Mil.), any officer having a rank above
that of colonel.
General orders (Mil.), orders from headquarters published
to the whole command.
General practitioner, in the United States, one who
practices medicine in all its branches without confining
himself to any specialty; in England, one who practices
both as physician and as surgeon.
General ship, a ship not chartered or let to particular
General term (Logic), a term which is the sign of a general
conception or notion.
General verdict (Law), the ordinary comprehensive verdict
in civil actions, "for the plaintiff" or "for the
General warrant (Law), a warrant, now illegal, to apprehend
suspected persons, without naming individuals.
Syn: Syn. General, Common, Universal.
Usage: Common denotes primarily that in which many share; and
hence, that which is often met with. General is
stronger, denoting that which pertains to a majority
of the individuals which compose a genus, or whole.
Universal, that which pertains to all without
exception. To be able to read and write is so common
an attainment in the United States, that we may
pronounce it general, though by no means universal.
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :
General \Gen"er*al\, n. [F. g['e]n['e]ral. See General., a.]
1. The whole; the total; that which comprehends or relates to
all, or the chief part; -- opposed to particular.
In particulars our knowledge begins, and so spreads
itself by degrees to generals. --Locke.
2. (Mil.) One of the chief military officers of a government
or country; the commander of an army, of a body of men not
less than a brigade. In European armies, the highest
military rank next below field marshal.
Note: In the United States the office of General of the Army
has been created by temporary laws, and has been held
only by Generals U. S. Grant, W. T. Sherman, and P. H.
Sheridan. Popularly, the title General is given to
various general officers, as General, Lieutenant
general, Major general, Brigadier general, Commissary
general, etc. See Brigadier general, Lieutenant
general, Major general, in the Vocabulary.
3. (Mil.) The roll of the drum which calls the troops
together; as, to beat the general.
4. (Eccl.) The chief of an order of monks, or of all the
houses or congregations under the same rule.
5. The public; the people; the vulgar. [Obs.] --Shak.
In general, in the main; for the most part.
From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) :
adj 1: applying to all or most members of a category or group;
"the general public"; "general assistance"; "a general
rule"; "in general terms"; "comprehensible to the general
reader" [ant: specific]
2: not specialized or limited to one class of things; "general
studies"; "general knowledge"
3: prevailing among and common to the general public; "the
4: affecting the entire body; "a general anesthetic"; "general
symptoms" [ant: local]
5: somewhat indefinite; "bearing a general resemblance to the
original"; "a general description of the merchandise"
6: of worldwide scope or applicability; "an issue of
cosmopolitan import"; "the shrewdest political and ecumenical
comment of our time"- Christopher Morley; "universal
experience" [syn: cosmopolitan, ecumenical,
oecumenical, general, universal, worldwide, world-
n 1: a general officer of the highest rank [syn: general,
2: the head of a religious order or congregation [syn:
general, superior general]
3: a fact about the whole (as opposed to particular); "he
discussed the general but neglected the particular" [ant:
v 1: command as a general; "We are generaled by an incompetent!"
From Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0 :
256 Moby Thesaurus words for "general":
ADC, Babbittish, CO, OD, Philistine, abstract, accepted,
accustomed, across the board, aide, aide-de-camp, aleatoric,
aleatory, all-inclusive, amorphous, approximate, ascendant,
associated, assorted, at the head, bland, blanket, blended, blobby,
blurred, blurry, boss, bourgeois, brigadier, brigadier general,
broad, campy, captain, casual, catholic, chance, chancy, chaotic,
chicken colonel, chief, chief of staff, civic, civil, collective,
collectivistic, colonel, combined, commandant, commander,
commander in chief, commanding, commanding officer,
commissioned officer, common, commonplace, communal, communistic,
community, commutual, company officer, composite, comprehensive,
confused, conjoint, controlling, cooperative, cosmopolitan,
customary, disordered, diversified, dominant, encyclopedic,
everyday, exec, executive officer, extended, extensive, familiar,
featureless, field marshal, field officer, first lieutenant,
five-star general, foggy, four-star general, fuzzy,
general officer, generalissimo, generalized, generic, global,
governing, habitual, hazy, head, hegemonic, hegemonistic,
heterogeneous, high-camp, hit-or-miss, homely, homespun, humdrum,
hybrid, ill-defined, imprecise, imprudent, in ascendancy,
in charge, in chief, in common, in the ascendant, inaccurate,
inchoate, inclusive, incoherent, indecisive, indefinable,
indefinite, indeterminable, indeterminate, indiscreet,
indiscriminate, indiscriminative, indistinct, inexact, insensitive,
international, jemadar, joint, junior officer, kitschy, lax,
leading, lieutenant, lieutenant colonel, lieutenant general, loose,
low-camp, major, major general, marechal, marshal, master,
miscellaneous, mixed, mongrel, mutual, national, natural,
naturalistic, naturistic, nebulous, neutral, nonjudgmental,
nonspecific, normal, obscure, officer, one-star general, orderless,
orderly, orderly officer, ordinary, overall, panoramic, paramount,
plebeian, pop, popular, predominant, predominate, prepollent,
preponderant, preponderate, prepotent, prevailing, prevalent,
promiscuous, public, random, realistic, reciprocal, regnant,
regular, regulating, regulative, regulatory, reigning, risaldar,
routine, ruling, run-of-the-mill, senior officer, shadowed forth,
shadowy, shapeless, shared, shavetail, sirdar, social, socialistic,
societal, sovereign, staff officer, state, stochastic, subahdar,
subaltern, sublieutenant, supranational, supreme, sweeping,
tactless, the Old Man, the brass, three-star general, top brass,
two-star general, typical, uncharacterized, unclear, uncritical,
uncriticizing, undefined, undemanding, undestined, undetermined,
undifferentiated, undifferentiating, undiscreet, undiscriminating,
undiscriminative, uneventful, unexacting, unexceptional,
unfastidious, universal, unmeticulous, unparticular, unplain,
unrestricted, unselective, unspecific, unspecified, unsubtle,
untactful, usual, vague, veiled, vernacular, vulgar, wholesale,
wide, widespread, worldwide
From Bouvier's Law Dictionary, Revised 6th Ed (1856) :
GENERAL. This word has several meanings, namely: 1. A principal officer,
particularly in the army. 2. Something opposed to special; as, a general
verdict, the general issue, which expressions are used in contradistinction
to special verdict, special issue. 3. Principal, as the general post office.
4. Not select, as a general ship. (q. v.) 5. Not particular, as a general
custom. 6. Not limited, as general jurisdiction. 7. This word is sometimes
annexed or prefixed to other words to express or limit the extent of their
signification; as Attorney General, Solicitor General, the General Assembly,
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