Hypertext Webster Gateway: "agent"

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) (web1913)

Agent \A"gent\, a. [L. agens, agentis, p. pr. of agere to act;
akin to Gr. ? to lead, Icel. aka to drive, Skr. aj. [root]2.]
Acting; -- opposed to {patient}, or sustaining, action.
[Archaic] ``The body agent.'' --Bacon.

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) (web1913)

Agent \A"gent\, n.
1. One who exerts power, or has the power to act; an actor.

Heaven made us agents, free to good or ill.

2. One who acts for, or in the place of, another, by
authority from him; one intrusted with the business of
another; a substitute; a deputy; a factor.

3. An active power or cause; that which has the power to
produce an effect; as, a physical, chemical, or medicinal
agent; as, heat is a powerful agent.

From WordNet (r) 1.7 (wn)

n 1: an active and efficient cause; capable of producing a
certain effect; "their research uncovered new disease
2: a substance that exerts some force or effect
3: a representative who acts on behalf of other persons or
4: a businessman who buys or sells for another in exchange for
a commission [syn: {factor}, {broker}]
5: any agent or representative of a federal agency or bureau
[syn: {federal agent}]

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