A generalized modified ratio estimator is proposed for estimating the population mean using the known population parameters. It is shown that the simple random sampling without replacement sample mean, the usual ratio estimator, the linear regression estimator and all the existing modified ratio estimators are the particular cases of the proposed estimator. The bias and the mean squared error of the proposed estimator are derived and are compared with that of existing estimators. The conditions for which the proposed estimator performs better than the existing estimators are also derived. The performance of the proposed estimator is assessed with that of the existing estimators for certain natural populations