[ jen-er-uh-lahyz ]
See synonyms for: generalizegeneralizedgeneralizing on

verb (used with object),gen·er·al·ized, gen·er·al·iz·ing.
  1. to infer (a general principle, trend, etc.) from particular facts, statistics, or the like.

  2. to infer or form (a general principle, opinion, conclusion, etc.) from only a few facts, examples, or the like.

  1. to give a general rather than a specific or special character or form to.

  2. to make general; bring into general use or knowledge.

verb (used without object),gen·er·al·ized, gen·er·al·iz·ing.
  1. to form general principles, opinions, etc.

  2. to deal, think, or speak in generalities.

  1. to make general inferences.

Origin of generalize

First recorded in 1745–55; general + -ize
  • Also especially British, gen·er·al·ise .

Other words from generalize

  • gen·er·al·iz·a·ble, adjective
  • gen·er·al·iz·er, noun
  • non·gen·er·al·ized, adjective
  • un·gen·er·al·ized, adjective
  • un·gen·er·al·iz·ing, adjective

Words Nearby generalize Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use generalize in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for generalize



/ (ˈdʒɛnrəˌlaɪz) /

  1. to form (general principles or conclusions) from (detailed facts, experience, etc); infer

  2. (intr) to think or speak in generalities, esp in a prejudiced way

  1. (tr; usually passive) to cause to become widely used or known

  2. (intr) (of a disease)

    • to spread throughout the body

    • to change from a localized infection or condition to a systemic one: generalized infection

Derived forms of generalize

  • generalizer or generaliser, noun

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012