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prime mover

noun
1.
Mechanics.
  1. the initial agent, as wind or electricity, that puts a machine in motion.
  2. a machine, as a water wheel or steam engine, that receives and modifies energy as supplied by some natural source.
2.
means of towing a cannon, as an animal, truck, or tractor.
3.
Also called unmoved mover. Aristotelianism. that which is the first cause of all movement and does not itself move.
4.
a person or thing that initiates or gives power and cohesion to something, as an idea, endeavor, or organization.
Origin
1935-1940
1935-40
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for prime-mover

prime mover

noun
1.
the original or primary force behind an idea, enterprise, etc
2.
  1. the source of power, such as fuel, wind, electricity, etc, for a machine
  2. the means of extracting power from such a source, such as a steam engine, electric motor, etc
3.
(in the philosophy of Aristotle) that which is the cause of all movement

Prime Mover

noun
1.
(philosophy) the Prime Mover, God, esp when considered as a first cause
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
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Idioms and Phrases with prime-mover

prime mover

The initial source of energy directed toward a goal, someone or something that sets others in motion. For example, Jean was the prime mover in getting us more laboratory space, or Patriotism was the prime mover of the revolution. [ Late 1600s ]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Difficulty index for prime mover

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9
11
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