grandfather clause love

grandfather clause


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A provision in a statute that exempts an activity or item from new regulations that would otherwise prevent engagement in that activity or use of that item.
  • noun A clause in some southern state constitutions that exempted descendants of persons allowed to vote prior to the Civil War from subsequent voting restrictions, meaning that such restrictions disfranchised many African Americans while not applying to many whites.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun A clause or section, especially in a law, granting exceptions for people or organisations who were affected by previous conditions.

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

  • noun an exemption based on circumstances existing prior to the adoption of some policy; used to enfranchise illiterate whites in south after the American Civil War


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From late 19th-century legislation and constitutional amendments passed by a number of U.S. Southern states, which created new literacy and property restrictions on voting, but exempted those whose grandfathers had the right to vote before the Civil War. The intent and effect of such rules was to prevent poor and illiterate African American former slaves and their descendants from voting, but without denying poor and illiterate whites the right to vote.


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  • Sexist!

    December 15, 2008

  • As it is a recommendation that we use "gender-neutral language" in academic writing, I suppose this ought to be changed to grandparent clause.

    December 15, 2008

  • I was going to suggest toothless old fogey clause but, err, ...

    December 15, 2008

  • Ooh! Umbrage! Bilby's "toothless old fogey" comment was ageist and dentist.

    May 31, 2010

  • How about knobby-kneed, doddering silvertop?

    May 31, 2010

  • Umbrage! Nihilist.

    May 31, 2010

  • Technical foul! You took umbrage with your first comment so obviously there was none left to take with your second.

    May 31, 2010

  • Umbrage! Any new umbrage-taking on my part is grandfathered in, thankyouverymuch.

    *hopes this distracts from the last umbrage-taking's requirement that nihilist be pronounced like "knee" instead of "Nile"*

    May 31, 2010

  • You know, right, that come Erin McKean's birthday, Grandfather Clause will deliver gifts to all deserving little boys and girls who have been good about using their and its correctly, helped of course by his merry and devoted band of subordinate clauses...

    June 1, 2010

  • Am I a deserving little kid? Am I? I do try ever so hard to use their theirs and its its and it's correctly!

    June 1, 2010