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Meaning of generative grammar

gen'erative gram'mar

Pronunciation: [key]
— Ling. Ling.
  1. a linguistic theory that attempts to describe the tacit knowledge that a native speaker has of a language by establishing a set of explicit, formalized rules that specify or generate all the possible grammatical sentences of a language, while excluding all unacceptable sentences. Cf. transformational grammar.
  2. a set of such rules.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.
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