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grandfather clause

grandfather clause

 
pronunciation:
graend fa thr klawz
part of speech: noun
definition 1: a clause in certain laws, agreements, or the like that exempts from a control or restriction those already engaged in an act that the new law now forbids.
definition 2: a former law in certain southern U.S. states that exempted white voters from the literacy requirement if their ancestors voted prior to the Civil War, and that thus enlarged the white voting population, relative to the black.