Definition of Motive

1. Adjective. Causing or able to cause motion. "Motor energy"

Exact synonyms: Motor
Similar to: Causative
Derivative terms: Motivity, Motor, Motor

2. Noun. 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. "He acted with the best of motives"

3. Adjective. Impelling to action. "Motivating arguments"
Exact synonyms: Motivating, Motivative
Similar to: Causative
Derivative terms: Motivating, Motivate

4. Noun. A theme that is repeated or elaborated in a piece of music.
Exact synonyms: Motif
Generic synonyms: Idea, Melodic Theme, Musical Theme, Theme
Specialized synonyms: Obbligato, Obligato

5. Noun. A design or figure that consists of recurring shapes or colors, as in architecture or decoration.
Exact synonyms: Motif
Generic synonyms: Design, Figure, Pattern

Definition of Motive

1. n. That which moves; a mover.

2. a. Causing motion; having power to move, or tending to move; as, a motive argument; motive power.

3. v. t. To prompt or incite by a motive or motives; to move.

Definition of Motive

1. Noun. An incentive to act; a reason for doing something; anything that prompted a choice of action. ¹

2. Noun. A motif; a theme or subject, especially one that is central to the work or often repeated. ¹

3. Verb. (transitive) To prompt or incite by a '''motive''' or motives; to move. ¹

4. Adjective. Causing motion; having power to move, or tending to move; as, a motive argument; motive power. ¹

5. Adjective. Relating to motion and/or to its cause ¹

¹ Source:

Definition of Motive

1. to motivate [v -TIVED, -TIVING, -TIVES] - See also: motivate

Medical Definition of Motive

1. Causing motion; having power to move, or tending to move; as, a motive argument; motive power. "Motive faculty. " Motive power, a natural agent, as water, steam, wind, electricity, etc, used to impart motion to machinery; a motor; a mover. Source: Websters Dictionary (01 Mar 1998)

Lexicographical Neighbors of Motive

motive (current term)
motive power
motley crew
motley crews

Literary usage of Motive

Below you will find example usage of this term as found in modern and/or classical literature:

1. A Treatise of Human Nature by David Hume (1874)
"act of a certain kind has been done, it cannot be the original When it motive to such an action; but why may not desire for so t^"^^™ pleasant an emotion, ..."

2. Encyclopaedia Britannica: A Standard Work of Reference in Art, Literature (1907)
"The remark applies with double force to the measurement of the electro-motive force of polarization. Many measurements of the latter have been made. ..."

3. Education by Project Innovation (Organization) (1908)
"The Vocational motive in the School VICTOR FRAZEE, MANTON AVENUE GRAMMAR SCHOOL, PROVIDENCE |E all recognize the strength of the vocational motive. ..."

4. Psychology, General Introduction by Charles Hubbard Judd (1917)
"Interest in exceptional experiences is hardly a sufficient motive, however, ... An- r,thf,r fundamental motive appeared early in the modern ..."

5. An Introduction to the Principles of Morals and Legislation by Jeremy Bentham (1879)
"M2 A seducing or corrupting motive, what—a tutelary or ... The motive of religion . • '44 Occasional tutelary motives may be any whatsoever . ..."

6. The woman in white by Wilkie Collins (1871)
"In plainer words, I determined to be guided by the one higher motive of which I was certain, the motive of serving the cause of Laura and the cause of Truth ..."

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