Efficient cause
Cause Cause (k[add]z), n. [F. cause, fr. L. causa. Cf. {Cause}, v., {Kickshaw}.] 1. That which produces or effects a result; that from which anything proceeds, and without which it would not exist. [1913 Webster]

Cause is substance exerting its power into act, to make one thing begin to be. --Locke. [1913 Webster]

2. That which is the occasion of an action or state; ground; reason; motive; as, cause for rejoicing. [1913 Webster]

3. Sake; interest; advantage. [Obs.] [1913 Webster]

I did it not for his cause. --2 Cor. vii. 12. [1913 Webster]

4. (Law) A suit or action in court; any legal process by which a party endeavors to obtain his claim, or what he regards as his right; case; ground of action. [1913 Webster]

5. Any subject of discussion or debate; matter; question; affair in general. [1913 Webster]

What counsel give you in this weighty cause! --Shak. [1913 Webster]

6. The side of a question, which is espoused, advocated, and upheld by a person or party; a principle which is advocated; that which a person or party seeks to attain. [1913 Webster]

God befriend us, as our cause is just. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

The part they take against me is from zeal to the cause. --Burke. [1913 Webster]

{Efficient cause}, the agent or force that produces a change or result.

{Final cause}, the end, design, or object, for which anything is done.

{Formal cause}, the elements of a conception which make the conception or the thing conceived to be what it is; or the idea viewed as a formative principle and co["o]perating with the matter.

{Material cause}, that of which anything is made.

{Proximate cause}. See under {Proximate}.

{To make common cause with}, to join with in purposes and aims. --Macaulay.

Syn: Origin; source; mainspring; motive; reason; incitement; inducement; purpose; object; suit; action. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • efficient cause — That which actually precipitates an accident or injury. Dictionary from West s Encyclopedia of American Law. 2005. efficient cause That which actually precipitates an accident or injury …   Law dictionary

  • efficient cause — The working cause; that cause which produces effects or results. An intervening cause, which produces results which would not have come to pass except for its interposition, and for which, therefore, the person who set in motion the original… …   Black's law dictionary

  • efficient cause — The working cause; that cause which produces effects or results. An intervening cause, which produces results which would not have come to pass except for its interposition, and for which, therefore, the person who set in motion the original… …   Black's law dictionary

  • efficient cause — noun : the immediate agent in the production of an effect I have a free morning, and this is the efficient cause of the chance for talk with you H.J.Laski …   Useful english dictionary

  • efficient cause — The primary responsible cause of a legal liability, even though, being first of a chain of events leading to the infliction of injury, it is most remote in point of time of any event preceding the injury and connected therewith. Stacy v Williams …   Ballentine's law dictionary

  • efficient cause — Aristotelianism. See under cause (def. 8b). * * * …   Universalium

  • efficient cause — See causes …   Philosophy dictionary

  • efficient cause — noun Philosophy an agent that brings a thing into being or initiates a change …   English new terms dictionary

  • intervening efficient cause — See efficient intervening cause …   Ballentine's law dictionary

  • sole efficient cause — The proximate cause of an accident. 7 Am J2d Auto § 376 …   Ballentine's law dictionary

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