motor

noun
mo·​tor | \ˈmō-tər \

Definition of motor 

(Entry 1 of 3)

1 : one that imparts motion specifically : prime mover

2 : any of various power units that develop energy or impart motion: such as

a : a small compact engine

b : internal combustion engine especially : a gasoline engine

c : a rotating machine that transforms electrical energy into mechanical energy

3 : motor vehicle especially : automobile

motor

adjective

Definition of motor (Entry 2 of 3)

1a : causing or imparting motion

b : of, relating to, or being a motor neuron or a nerve containing motor neurons motor fiber

c : of, relating to, concerned with, or involving muscular movement motor areas of the brain

2a : equipped with or driven by a motor

b : of, relating to, or involving an automobile

c : designed for motor vehicles or motorists

motor

verb
motored; motoring; motors

Definition of motor (Entry 3 of 3)

intransitive verb

1 : to travel by automobile : drive

2 : to move or proceed at a vigorous steady pace motored down the field for a touchdown

transitive verb

: to transport by automobile

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from motor

Noun

motordom \ -​dəm \ noun
motorless \ -​ləs \ adjective

Examples of motor in a Sentence

Noun

the device was equipped with a small electrical motor to make the gears spin went shopping for a new automobile at Valley Motors

Adjective

motor areas of the brain

Verb

We spent the afternoon motoring through the countryside. The car motored slowly up the hill.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

With motor running, gradually mix in 1/4 cup olive oil until smooth. Woman's Day Kitchen, Woman's Day, "Seared Summer Squash with Pistachio Pesto," 25 July 2018 In response, the school principal had the staff test the children’s gross motor skills. Catherine Porter, New York Times, "1 Neighborhood. 24 Kindergarten Classes. 40 Languages. (Some Miming Helps.)," 29 June 2018 Music has been shown to stimulate young children’s brains, while dance helps sharpen motor skills. Zafreen Jaffery, Ed.d., miamiherald, "Bake cookies. Head to the library. Ways to keep your child's brain sharp during the summer," 27 June 2018 Both syndromes feature uncontrollable and severe seizures resulting in some form of learning disability, such as hindered languages and motor skills. Lilly Price, USA TODAY, "FDA approves first marijuana-based epilepsy drug: CBD oil," 26 June 2018 Many also have delayed development of motor skills such as sitting and crawling. NBC News, "FDA approves cannabis-based drug for epilepsy," 25 June 2018 But speech and physical therapy focused on his small motor skills erased any trace of those. Michael Lycklama, idahostatesman, "‘A miracle.’ Payette baseball player back on field a month after fracturing his skull," 9 June 2018 And this exposure can do durable damage to a child’s cognitive faculties, including her memory, attention, reasoning, and motor skills. Eric Levitz, Daily Intelligencer, "Jordan Peterson Does Not Support ‘Equality of Opportunity’," 25 May 2018 Bercovici theorizes that aging elite athletes know something the rest of us don’t and use tools most of us haven’t heard of yet, like brain-stimulating headsets that enhance motor skills or DNA testing to predict injuries. Graham Averill, Outside Online, "The Secret to Athletic Longevity Is Surprisingly Simple," 17 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

In the fourth installment of the open-world driving franchise, Forza Horizon 4, gamers and car enthusiasts will be motoring around jolly old England. Anthony Alaniz, Popular Mechanics, "Everything We Know About Forza Horizon 4," 11 Sep. 2018 Servo-motored pirates still attack defenseless villagers for the sake of plundering and pillaging, eventually drinking to excess and burning down the town. Scott Craven, USA TODAY, "Disneyland's 'Pirates' ride to reopen with new female pirate, without bride auction," 7 June 2018 Reddick motored from first to third, allowing Tony Kemp to bat with runners at the corners. Chandler Rome, Houston Chronicle, "Bizarre ending secures Astros' extra-innings victory over A's," 11 July 2018 The boy was still not breathing by the time Haag motored the boat to a yacht club on the river’s eastern shore. Nancy Rommelmann, Good Housekeeping, "Amanda Stott-Smith Was a Loving Mother of 3. So Why Did She Try to Murder Her 2 Youngest Kids?," 29 June 2018 Dump trucks motored around trash heaps and birds circled above under sweltering heat. Nicholas Bogel-burroughs, baltimoresun.com, "Baltimore Police search landfill for bag they say was dumped by man accused of killing 20-year-old woman," 18 June 2018 Offensively, sophomore outfielder Ray Alejo has been UCF’s engine of late, motoring around the bases at will. Brian Murphy, OrlandoSentinel.com, "UCF baseball focused on bolstering NCAA résumé when it hosts Oklahoma," 11 May 2018 In addition, nearly 34 percent of the parents admitted to reading text messages while driving with children, and almost 27 percent sent text messages while motoring. Rita Giordano, Philly.com, "Parents model distracted driving in front of their kids, CHOP study finds," 12 July 2018 None of these are dangerous pursuits – until drivers interact with them while motoring down the road. Mike Snider, USA TODAY, "You can't stream video while driving, more states decide as distracted driving deaths rise," 28 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'motor.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of motor

Noun

1586, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1823, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1895, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for motor

Noun

Latin, from movēre to move

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about motor

Statistics for motor

Last Updated

17 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for motor

The first known use of motor was in 1586

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for motor

motor

noun

English Language Learners Definition of motor

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: a machine that produces motion or power for doing work

motor

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of motor (Entry 2 of 3)

: of, relating to, used in, or involving a vehicle that is powered by a motor (such as a car or motorcycle)

: having a motor

: of or relating to the part of the nervous system that controls the movement of muscles

motor

verb

English Language Learners Definition of motor (Entry 3 of 3)

: to travel in a car

of a car, truck, etc. : to move in a specified manner or direction

motor

noun
mo·​tor | \ˈmō-tər \

Kids Definition of motor

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: a machine that produces motion or power for doing work an electric motor

motor

adjective

Kids Definition of motor (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : of, relating to, or designed for use in an automobile a motor trip motor oil

2 : equipped with or driven by a motor

3 : causing or controlling movement motor nerves

motor

verb
motored; motoring

Kids Definition of motor (Entry 3 of 3)

motor

adjective
mo·​tor | \ˈmōt-ər \

Medical Definition of motor 

1 : causing or imparting motion

2 : of, relating to, or being a motor neuron or a nerve containing motor neurons motor fibers motor cells

3 : of, relating to, concerned with, or involving muscular movement motor areas of the brain

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on motor

What made you want to look up motor? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

by force of circumstances

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Vocab Quiz

  • the-education-of-achilles-eugne-delacroix
  • Which is a synonym of discomfit?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Bee Cubed

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!