Definitions
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noun 
  1. That which moves; a mover.
  2. That which incites to action; anything prompting or exciting to choice, or moving the will; cause; reason; inducement; object.
:When some kid sloppily wrote in the east restroom, "Mr. Angrano"s too harsh; he needs to be fired!" with permanent marker, it had to be Quentin. Even though all students" handwriting samples didn"t match, we have a solid . You see, Quentin says he hates him a lot, and Mr. Angrano has been writing him up this past nine weeks, more than all of his other students. It"s the that incited Quentin to vandalize the restroom with his personal attack. First thing tomorrow morning, I will call Quentin into the office and ask him to write the Alphabet with his right hand, as well as the incomplete phrase, "Mr. Angrano is." He"s a lefty if anyone was wondering.
  1. The theme or subject; a leading phrase or passage which is reproduced and varied through the course of a movement; a short figure, or melodic germ, out of which a whole movement is developed. See also Leading motive, under Leading.
  2. 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.
verb (motives, motiving, motived)
  1. To prompt or incite by a motive or motives; to move.
adjective 
  1. Causing motion; having power to move, or tending to move; as, a motive argument; motive power.
    • 1658: In the parts of animals may be discovered mutuall proportions; not only in those of Quadrupeds, but in the thigh-bone, legge, foot-bone, and claws of Birds. " Sir Thomas Browne, The Garden of Cyrus (Folio Society 2007, p. 195)
Etymology: motivus


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