The DICT Development Group

Search for:
Search type:

Database copyright information
Server information

6 definitions found
 for motive
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Motive \Mo"tive\, a.
     Causing motion; having power to move, or tending to move; as,
     a motive argument; motive power. "Motive faculty." --Bp.
     [1913 Webster]
     Motive power (Mach.), a natural agent, as water, steam,
        wind, electricity, etc., used to impart motion to
        machinery; a motor; a mover.
        [1913 Webster]

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Motive \Mo"tive\, n. [F. motif, LL. motivum, from motivus
     moving, fr. L. movere, motum, to move. See Move.]
     1. That which moves; a mover. [Obs.] --Shak.
        [1913 Webster]
     2. That which incites to action; anything prompting or
        exciting to choise, or moving the will; cause; reason;
        inducement; object; motivation[2].
        [1913 Webster]
              By motive, I mean the whole of that which moves,
              excites, or invites the mind to volition, whether
              that be one thing singly, or many things
              conjunctively.                        --J. Edwards.
        [1913 Webster]
     3. (Mus.) The theme or subject; a leading phrase or passage
        which is reproduced and varied through the course of a
        comor a movement; a short figure, or melodic germ, out of
        which a whole movement is develpoed. See also Leading
        motive, under Leading. [Written also motivo.]
        [1913 Webster]
     4. (Fine Arts) That which produces conception, invention, or
        creation in the mind of the artist in undertaking his
        subject; the guiding or controlling idea manifested in a
        work of art, or any part of one.
        [1913 Webster]
     Syn: Incentive; incitement; inducement; reason; spur;
          stimulus; cause.
     Usage: Motive, Inducement, Reason. Motive is the word
            originally used in speaking of that which determines
            the choice. We call it an inducement when it is
            attractive in its nature. We call it a reason when it
            is more immediately addressed to the intellect in the
            form of argument.
            [1913 Webster]

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Motive \Mo"tive\, v. t.
     To prompt or incite by a motive or motives; to move.
     [1913 Webster]

From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) :

      adj 1: causing or able to cause motion; "a motive force";
             "motive power"; "motor energy" [syn: motive(a),
      2: impelling to action; "it may well be that ethical language
         has primarily a motivative function"- Arthur Pap; "motive
         pleas"; "motivating arguments" [syn: motivative(a),
         motive(a), motivating]
      n 1: the psychological feature that arouses an organism to
           action toward a desired goal; the reason for the action;
           that which gives purpose and direction to behavior; "we did
           not understand his motivation"; "he acted with the best of
           motives" [syn: motivation, motive, need]
      2: a theme that is repeated or elaborated in a piece of music
         [syn: motif, motive]
      3: a design or figure that consists of recurring shapes or
         colors, as in architecture or decoration [syn: motif,

From Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0 :

  135 Moby Thesaurus words for "motive":
     activating, active, actuating, aim, ambition, angle, animating,
     animus, antecedent, argument, aspiration, attraction, basis,
     burden, case, causal, causative, cause, chapter, compelling,
     concern, consideration, counsel, desideration, desideratum, design,
     desire, determinant, determination, device, directive, driving,
     effect, emotion, end, enticement, essence, feeling, figure,
     fixed purpose, focus of attention, focus of interest, function,
     gist, goad, goal, grounds, head, heading, idea, impellent,
     impelling, impulsive, in motion, incentive, incitement, inducement,
     inducive, influence, intendment, intent, intention, issue, kinetic,
     leitmotiv, living issue, lure, main point, matter, matter in hand,
     meaning, meat, mind, mobile, motif, motile, motivating,
     motivating force, motivation, motivational, motor, moving, nisus,
     object, objective, operative, passion, pattern, phrase, plan,
     point, point at issue, point in question, pressing, problem, prod,
     project, propellant, propelling, proposal, propulsive, propulsory,
     prospectus, pulsive, purpose, pushing, question, rationale, reason,
     resolution, resolve, rubric, sake, shoving, spring, spur,
     stimulation, stimulus, stirring, striving, study, subject,
     subject matter, subject of thought, substance, text, theme,
     thrusting, topic, transitional, traveling, urge, urgent, view,

From Bouvier's Law Dictionary, Revised 6th Ed (1856) :

  MOTIVE. The inducement, cause or reason why a thing is done.
       2. When there is such a mistake in the motive, that had the truth been 
  known, the contract would pot have been made, it is generally void., For 
  example, if a man should, after the death of Titius, of which he was 
  ignorant, insure his life, the error of the motive would avoid the contract. 
  Toull. Dr. Civ. Fr. liv. 3, c. 2, art. 1. Or, if Titius should sell to 
  Livius his horse, which both parties supposed to be living at some distance 
  from the place where the contract was made, when in fact, the horse was then 
  dead, the contract would be void. Poth. Vente, n. 4; 2 Kent, Com. 367. When 
  the contract is entered into under circumstances of clear mistake or 
  surprise, it will not be enforced. See the following authorities on this 
  subject. 1 Russ. & M. 527; 1 Ves. jr. 221; 4 Price, 135; 1 Ves. jr. 210; 
  Atkinson on Titl. 144. Vide Cause; Consideration. 
       3. The motive of prosecutions is frequently an object of inquiry, 
  particularly when the prosecutor is a witness, and in his case, as that of 
  any other witness, when the motion is ascertained to be bad, as a desire of 
  revenge for a real or supposed injury, the credibility of the witness will 
  be much weakened, though this will not alone render him incompetent. See 
  Evidence; Witness. 

Contact=webmaster@dict.org Specification=RFC 2229