He showed that myth displayed a regularity of development not to be accounted for by motiveless fancy, but by laws of formation.
She had moods of motiveless irritation, and of unreasonable indulgence.
To break off their interview thus sharply seemed to him motiveless.
To its existence is often to be traced the motiveless crimes of the young.'
We have reached a pitch where, in my judgment, we are justified in believing that some motiveless malignity is at work.
This duplicity was not motiveless, although, on a cursory view, its purpose may not be apparent.
These impulses are not vile; our moral code does not cry out against them as it does against lust, greed, and motiveless cruelty.
Nor is it a caprice, that is, motiveless volition, or will as a motor.
Iago's soliloquy, the motive-hunting of a motiveless malignity—how awful it is!
There it was—an open hostility with more power behind it than Deklay's motiveless disapproval had carried.
mid-14c., "something brought forward," from Old French motif "will, drive, motivation," noun use of adjective, literally "moving," from Medieval Latin motivus "moving, impelling," from Latin motus "a moving, motion," past participle of movere "to move" (see move (v.)). Meaning "that which inwardly moves a person to behave a certain way" is from early 15c.
late 14c., from Old French motif "moving" or directly from Medieval Latin motivus "moving, impelling," from past participle stem of movere "to move" (see move (v.)).
motive mo·tive (mō'tĭv)
An emotion, desire, physiological need, or similar impulse that acts as an incitement to action. Also called learned drive. adj.
Causing or able to cause motion.