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## potential

```  3  definitions  found

From  Webster's  Revised  Unabridged  Dictionary  (1913)  [web1913]:

Potential  \Po*ten"tial\,  n.
1.  Anything  that  may  be  possible;  a  possibility;  potentially.
--Bacon.

2.  (Math.)  In  the  theory  of  gravitation,  or  of  other  forces
acting  in  space,  a  function  of  the  rectangular  coordinates
which  determine  the  position  of  a  point,  such  that  its
differential  coefficients  with  respect  to  the
co["o]rdinates  are  equal  to  the  components  of  the  force  at
the  point  considered;  --  also  called  {potential  function},
or  {force  function}.  It  is  called  also  {Newtonian
potential}  when  the  force  is  directed  to  a  fixed  center
and  is  inversely  as  the  square  of  the  distance  from  the
center.

3.  (Elec.)  The  energy  of  an  electrical  charge  measured  by  its
power  to  do  work  hence  the  degree  of  electrification  as
referred  to  some  standard,  as  that  of  the  earth;
electro-motive  force.

From  Webster's  Revised  Unabridged  Dictionary  (1913)  [web1913]:

Potential  \Po*ten"tial\,  a.  [Cf.  F.  potentiel.  See  {Potency}.]
1.  Being  potent;  endowed  with  energy  adequate  to  a  result;
efficacious;  influential.  [Obs.]  ``And  hath  in  his  effect
a  voice  potential.''  --Shak.

2.  Existing  in  possibility,  not  in  actuality.  ``A  potential
hero.''  --Carlyle.

Potential  existence  means  merely  that  the  thing  may
be  at  ome  time;  actual  existence,  that  it  now  is
--Sir  W.
Hamilton.

{Potential  cautery}.  See  under  {Cautery}.

{Potential  energy}.  (Mech.)  See  the  Note  under  {Energy}.

{Potential  mood},  or  {mode}  (Gram.),  that  form  of  the  verb
which  is  used  to  express  possibility,  liberty,  power,
will  obligation,  or  necessity,  by  the  use  of  may  can,
must  might  could  would  or  should  as  I  may  go  he  can
write.

From  WordNet  r  1.6  [wn]:

potential
adj  1:  existing  in  possibility;  "a  potential  problem";  "possible
uses  of  nuclear  poser"  [syn:  {possible}]  [ant:  {actual}]
2:  expected  to  become  or  be  in  prospect;  "potential  clients";
"expected  income"  [syn:  {expected},  {likely}]
n  :  the  inherent  capacity  for  coming  into  being  [syn:  {potentiality},
{potency}]
```