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.
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Court \Court\ (k[=o]rt), n. [OF. court, curt, cort, F. cour, LL.
cortis, fr. L. cohors, cors, chors, gen. cohortis, cortis,
chortis, an inclosure, court, thing inclosed, crowd, throng;
co- + a root akin to Gr. chorto`s inclosure, feeding place,
and to E. garden, yard, orchard. See Yard, and cf.
1. An inclosed space; a courtyard; an uncovered area shut in
by the walls of a building, or by different building;
also, a space opening from a street and nearly surrounded
by houses; a blind alley.
The courts of the house of our God. --Ps. cxxxv.
And round the cool green courts there ran a row
Of cloisters. --Tennyson.
Goldsmith took a garret in a miserable court.
2. The residence of a sovereign, prince, nobleman, or other
dignitary; a palace.
Attends the emperor in his royal court. --Shak.
This our court, infected with their manners,
Shows like a riotous inn. --Shak.
3. The collective body of persons composing the retinue of a
sovereign or person high in authority; all the
surroundings of a sovereign in his regal state.
My lord, there is a nobleman of the court at door
would speak with you. --Shak.
Love rules the court, the camp, the grove. --Sir. W.
4. Any formal assembling of the retinue of a sovereign; as,
to hold a court.
The princesses held their court within the fortress.
5. Attention directed to a person in power; conduct or
address designed to gain favor; courtliness of manners;
civility; compliment; flattery.
No solace could her paramour intreat
Her once to show, ne court, nor dalliance.
I went to make my court to the Duke and Duchess of
(a) The hall, chamber, or place, where justice is
(b) The persons officially assembled under authority of
law, at the appropriate time and place, for the
administration of justice; an official assembly,
legally met together for the transaction of judicial
business; a judge or judges sitting for the hearing or
trial of causes.
(c) A tribunal established for the administration of
(d) The judge or judges; as distinguished from the counsel
or jury, or both.
Most heartily I do beseech the court
To give the judgment. --Shak.
7. The session of a judicial assembly.
8. Any jurisdiction, civil, military, or ecclesiastical.
9. A place arranged for playing the game of tennis; also, one
of the divisions of a tennis court.
Christian court, the English ecclesiastical courts in the
aggregate, or any one of them.
Court breeding, education acquired at court.
Court card. Same as Coat card.
Court circular, one or more paragraphs of news respecting
the sovereign and the royal family, together with the
proceedings or movements of the court generally, supplied
to the newspapers by an officer specially charged with
such duty. [Eng.] --Edwards.
Court of claims (Law), a court for settling claims against
a state or government; specif., a court of the United
States, created by act of Congress, and holding its
sessions at Washington. It is given jurisdiction over
claims on contracts against the government, and sometimes
may advise the government as to its liabilities. [Webster
Court day, a day on which a court sits to administer
Court dress, the dress prescribed for appearance at the
court of a sovereign.
Court fool, a buffoon or jester, formerly kept by princes
and nobles for their amusement.
Court guide, a directory of the names and adresses of the
nobility and gentry in a town.
Court hand, the hand or manner of writing used in records
and judicial proceedings. --Shak.
Court lands (Eng. Law), lands kept in demesne, -- that is,
for the use of the lord and his family.
Court marshal, one who acts as marshal for a court.
Court party, a party attached to the court.
Court rolls, the records of a court. SeeRoll.
Court in banc, or Court in bank, The full court sitting
at its regular terms for the hearing of arguments upon
questions of law, as distinguished from a sitting at nisi
Court of Arches, audience, etc. See under Arches,
Court of Chancery. See Chancery, n.
Court of Common pleas. (Law) See Common pleas, under
Court of Equity. See under Equity, and Chancery.
Court of Inquiry (Mil.), a court appointed to inquire into
and report on some military matter, as the conduct of an
Court of St. James, the usual designation of the British
Court; -- so called from the old palace of St. James,
which is used for the royal receptions, levees, and
The court of the Lord, the temple at Jerusalem; hence, a
church, or Christian house of worship.
General Court, the legislature of a State; -- so called
from having had, in the colonial days, judicial power; as,
the General Court of Massachusetts. [U.S.]
To pay one's court, to seek to gain favor by attentions.
"Alcibiades was assiduous in paying his court to
To put out of court, to refuse further judicial hearing.