Definition of Motive:

  1. Psychology: Concern, desire, emotion, or need that energizes people to action and determines their choice of behavior.

  2. Law: Inducement, reason, or willful desire (purpose) behind the commission of an offense. Whether good (such as helping a patient suffering from unbearable chronic pain to commit suicide) or bad (such as to commit murder) it is normally not a deciding factor in determination of guilt or innocence (but intent is). However, it may be relevant in a libel case, or may be invoked by a defending attorney in mitigation of punishment or by a prosecuting attorney as circumstantial evidence to prove guilt.

  3. Causing or being the reason for something.

  4. (in art, literature, or music) a motif.

  5. Producing physical or mechanical motion.

  6. A reason for doing something, especially one that is hidden or not obvious.

Synonyms of Motive

Reason, Motivation, Motivating force, Rationale, Grounds, Cause, Basis, Occasion, Thinking, The whys and wherefores, Object, Purpose, Intention, Design, 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, Will, Kinetic, Driving, Impelling, Propelling, Propulsive, Operative, Moving, Motor, Motif, Theme, Idea, Concept, Subject, Topic, Leitmotif, Trope, Element

How to use Motive in a sentence?

  1. The entire work grows organically from the opening horn motive.
  2. The motive principle of a writers work.
  3. The charge of gas is the motive force for every piston stroke.
  4. Bob wondered what Bills motive was for taking his car out to a party the other day without his permission.
  5. When you want to start a new business the motive will be to make the most profit so you must have a good plan.
  6. The local Police Department has spent countless hours trying to determine the motive behind recent drive by shootings in our area.
  7. A motive for his murder.

Meaning of Motive & Motive Definition