driving force


The impetus, power, or energy behind something in motion, as in He was clearly the driving force in the new administration. This term transfers the force that sets in motion an engine or vehicle to other enterprises. Ralph Waldo Emerson was among the first to use it figuratively (English Traits, 1856): “The ability of its journals is the driving force.”

QUIZZES

TAKE THIS QUIZ TO SEE WHAT YOU KNOW ABOUT 2ND-3RD GRADE VOCAB FROM BOOKS!

Are you learning new vocabulary? Or do you just have an interest in words? Either way, this quiz is for you.
Question 1 of 10
orchard
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.

Example sentences from the Web for driving force

  • Learning is only possible when instinct supplies the driving-force.

    The Analysis of Mind|Bertrand Russell