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Meaning & Definition of Operative in English

English

Operative

/ɑpərətɪv/

noun

1. A person secretly employed in espionage for a government

    synonym:
  • secret agent
  • ,
  • intelligence officer
  • ,
  • intelligence agent
  • ,
  • operative

2. Someone who can be employed as a detective to collect information

    synonym:
  • private detective
  • ,
  • PI
  • ,
  • private eye
  • ,
  • private investigator
  • ,
  • operative
  • ,
  • shamus
  • ,
  • sherlock

adjective

1. Being in force or having or exerting force

  • "Operative regulations"
  • "The major tendencies operative in the american political system"
    synonym:
  • operative

2. Relating to or requiring or amenable to treatment by surgery especially as opposed to medicine

  • "A surgical appendix"
  • "A surgical procedure"
  • "Operative dentistry"
    synonym:
  • surgical
  • ,
  • operative

3. Effective

  • Producing a desired effect
  • "The operative word"
    synonym:
  • operative

4. (of e.g. a machine) performing or capable of performing

  • "In running (or working) order"
  • "A functional set of brakes"
    synonym:
  • running(a)
  • ,
  • operative
  • ,
  • functional
  • ,
  • working(a)