Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A power affecting a person, thing, or course of events, especially one that operates without any direct or apparent effort: relaxed under the influence of the music; the influence of television on modern life.
  • n. Power to sway or affect based on prestige, wealth, ability, or position: used her parent's influence to get the job.
  • n. A person who exerts influence: My parents considered my friend to be a bad influence on me.
  • n. An effect or change produced by influence.
  • n. A determining factor believed by some to affect individual tendencies and characteristics understood to be caused by the positions of the stars and planets at the time of one's birth.
  • n. Factors believed to be caused by the changing positions of the stars and planets in relation to their positions at the time of one's birth.
  • transitive v. To produce an effect on by imperceptible or intangible means; sway.
  • transitive v. To affect the nature, development, or condition of; modify. See Synonyms at affect1.
  • idiom under the influence Intoxicated, especially with alcohol.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The power to affect, control or manipulate something or someone; the ability to change the development of fluctuating things such as conduct, thoughts or decisions.
  • n. An action exerted by a person or thing with such power on another to cause change.
  • n. A person or thing exerting such power or action.
  • n. An element believed to determine someone's character or individual tendencies, caused by the position of the stars and planets at the time of one's birth.
  • n. The action of flowing in; influx.
  • n. electrostatic induction.
  • v. To affect by gentle action; to exert an influence upon; to modify, bias, or sway; to persuade or induce.
  • v. To exert, make use of one's influence.
  • v. To cause to flow in or into; infuse; instill.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A flowing in or upon; influx.
  • n. Hence, in general, the bringing about of an effect, physical or moral, by a gradual process; controlling power quietly exerted; agency, force, or tendency of any kind which affects, modifies, or sways.
  • n. Power or authority arising from elevated station, excelence of character or intellect, wealth, etc.; reputation; acknowledged ascendency.
  • n. Induction.
  • transitive v. To control or move by power, physical or moral; to affect by gentle action; to exert an influence upon; to modify, bias, or sway; to affect; to move; to persuade; to induce.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To exercise influence on; modify, affect, or sway, especially by intangible or invisible means; act on or affect by the transmission of some energy or potency: as, the sun influences the tides; to influence a person by the hope of reward or the fear of punishment.
  • Synonyms To lead, induce, move, impel, actuate, prevail upon.
  • n. A flowing in; direct influx of energy: followed by into.
  • n. In astrology, the radiation of power from the stars in certain positions and collocations, affecting human actions and destinies; a supposed positive occult power exerted by the stars over human affairs.
  • n. Outgoing energy or potency that produces effects (primarily internal), or affects, modifies, or sways by insensible or invisible means that to which it is directed or on which it operates: sometimes used for the effect produced: as, the influence of heat on vegetation; the influence of climate on character; the influence of the moon on the tides; the influence of example on the young.
  • n. Capacity or power for producing effects by insensible or invisible means; authority; power; ascendancy over others; sway: as, a man of influence; a position of great influence.
  • n. In electricity and magnetism, same as induction, 6.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. the effect of one thing (or person) on another
  • n. a cognitive factor that tends to have an effect on what you do
  • n. a power to affect persons or events especially power based on prestige etc
  • v. have and exert influence or effect
  • v. induce into action by using one's charm
  • n. one having power to influence another
  • v. shape or influence; give direction to
  • n. causing something without any direct or apparent effort

Etymologies

Middle English, from Old French, from Medieval Latin īnfluentia, influx, from Latin īnfluēns, īnfluent-, present participle of īnfluere, to flow in : in-, in; + fluere, to flow.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English, from Old French influence ("emanation from the stars affecting one's fate"), from Medieval Latin īnfluentia, from Latin īnfluēns ("flowing in"), present active participle of īnfluō ("flow into"), from in- ("in-") + fluō ("flow"). (Wiktionary)

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