acting; exerting power (opposed to patient).

verb (used with object)

to represent (a person or thing) as an agent; act as an agent for: to agent a manuscript; Who agented that deal?

Nearby words

  1. agenesis,
  2. agenetic,
  3. agenitalism,
  4. agenize,
  5. agenosomia,
  6. agent noun,
  7. agent of production,
  8. agent orange,
  9. agent provocateur,
  10. agent-general

Origin of agent

1570–80; < Latin agent- (stem of agēns (present participle) doing), equivalent to ag- (root of agere to do) + -ent- -ent

Related formscoun·ter·a·gent, nounin·ter·a·gent, nounsu·per·a·gent, nounun·der·a·gent, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for agent

British Dictionary definitions for agent



a person who acts on behalf of another person, group, business, government, etc; representative
a person or thing that acts or has the power to act
a phenomenon, substance, or organism that exerts some force or effecta chemical agent
the means by which something occurs or is achieved; instrumentwind is an agent of plant pollination
a person representing a business concern, esp a travelling salesman
British short for estate agent
short for secret agent
Derived Formsagential (eɪˈdʒɛnʃəl), adjective

Word Origin for agent

C15: from Latin agent-, noun use of the present participle of agere to do

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for agent
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for agent




A force or substance, such as a chemical, that causes a change.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Science definitions for agent



A substance that can bring about a chemical reaction or a biological effect. Compare reagent.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.