[ac.tive] adj [ME, fr. MF or L; MF actif, fr. L activus, fr. actus, pp. of agere to drive, do--more at agent] (14c) 1: characterized by action rather than by contemplation or speculation
2: producing or involving action or movement 3 a of a verb form or voice: asserting that the person or thing represented by the grammatical subject performs the action represented by the verb "hits in "he hits the ball" is ~" b: expressing action as distinct from mere existence or state
4: quick in physical movement: lively
5: marked by vigorous activity: busy "the stock market was ~"
6: requiring vigorous action or exertion "~ sports" 7: having practical operation or results: effective "an ~ law"
8. a: disposed to action: energetic "took an ~ interest" b: engaged in an action or activity "an ~ club member" c of a volcano: currently erupting or likely to erupt--compare dormant 2a, extinct 1b d: characterized by emission of large amounts of electromagnetic energy "an ~ galactic nucleus" 9: engaged in full-time service esp. in the armed forces "~ duty" 10: marked by present operation, transaction, movement, or use "~ account" 11 a: capable of acting or reacting: reacting readily "~ nitrogen" b: tending to progress or to cause degeneration "~ tuberculosis" c of an electronic circuit element: capable of controlling voltages or currents d (1): requiring the expenditure of energy "~ calcium ion uptake" (2): functioning by the emission of radiant energy "radar is an ~ sensor" 12: still eligible to win the pot in poker 13: moving down the line: visiting in the set--used of couples in contredanses or square dances -- active n -- ac.tive.ly adv -- ac.tive.ness n