from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To reduce to a general form, class, or law.
  • transitive v. To render indefinite or unspecific.
  • transitive v. To infer from many particulars.
  • transitive v. To draw inferences or a general conclusion from.
  • transitive v. To make generally or universally applicable.
  • transitive v. To popularize.
  • intransitive v. To form a concept inductively.
  • intransitive v. To form general notions or conclusions.
  • intransitive v. To deal in generalities; speak or write vaguely.
  • intransitive v. Medicine To spread through the body. Used of a usually localized disease.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To speak in generalities, or in vague terms.
  • v. To infer or induce from specific cases to more general cases or principles.
  • v. To spread throughout the body and become systemic.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • intransitive v. To form into a genus; to view objects in their relations to a genus or class; to take general or comprehensive views.
  • transitive v. To bring under a genus or under genera; to view in relation to a genus or to genera.
  • transitive v. To apply to other genera or classes; to use with a more extensive application; to extend so as to include all special cases; to make universal in application, as a formula or rule.
  • transitive v. To derive or deduce (a general conception, or a general principle) from particulars.
  • transitive v. To speak in generalities; to talk in abstract terms.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To render general; make more general; bring under a general description or notion; treat or apply generically.
  • To infer inductively, as a general rule from a particular case or set of facts.
  • In mathematics, to modify, as a proposition, so as to obtain a wider proposition from which the former can be immediately deduced. See generalization, 3
  • To recognize that two or more objects have a common character; to form a general notion.
  • To reason inductively, from particular cases to general rules comprehending those cases.
  • Also spelled generalise.
  • In painting, to render large and typical characteristics rather than details.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. become systemic and spread throughout the body
  • v. draw from specific cases for more general cases
  • v. cater to popular taste to make popular and present to the general public; bring into general or common use
  • v. speak or write in generalities


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

general +‎ -ize



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  • One should never generalize.

    January 25, 2007