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Definition of operative:

  1. A skilled worker; an artisan; esp., one who operates a machine in a mill or manufactory.
  2. Based upon, or consisting of, an operation or operations; as, operative surgery.
  3. Having the power of acting; hence, exerting force, physical or moral; active in the production of effects; as, an operative motive.
  4. Producing the appropriate or designed effect; efficacious; as, an operative dose, rule, or penalty.

Synonyms:

in force, protease inhibitor, postoperative, be, private investigator, functional, awareness, key, principal investigator, artificer, artisan, utilizable, operant, shamus, intelligence agent, important, operating, operational, alive, mechanic, effective, preoperative, surgical, secret agent, functioning, usable, practicable, intelligence officer, action, employable, going, in effect, private detective, accessible, good, running, active, workman, possible, sherlock, private eye, pi, artist, significant, operable, in operation, open, at work, working.

Usage examples: