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agent Syllabification: a·gent
Pronunciation: /ˈājənt/

Definition of agent in English:


1A person who acts on behalf of another, in particular.
Example sentences
  • In addition you stated that the immigration officer did ask you questions but you were given instructions by the agent and the agent replied on your behalf.
  • North Wiltshire District Council rejected a proposal by Hunter Page Planning the agent acting on behalf of the landowner, the Minton Group last September.
  • Transactions by a party with a parent company are not mutual with transactions with a subsidiary; nor are transactions between brokers acting as agents on behalf of customers.
representative, emissary, envoy, go-between, proxy, negotiator, broker, liaison, spokesperson, spokesman, spokeswoman
informal rep
1.1A person who manages business, financial, or contractual matters for an actor, performer, or writer.
Example sentences
  • By that time, I was in the sort of semi-media business as an agent handling writers.
  • The role of the publisher could change markedly and perhaps be collapsed into that of the writers and their business managers and agents.
  • Actors, agents and managers go home happy with a tasty 10-15% of their clients' payday.
1.2A person or company that provides a particular service, typically one that involves organizing transactions between two other parties: a travel agent shipping agents a real-estate agent
More example sentences
  • From a product manufacturer's viewpoint, there continues to be a growing need to provide value-added services to agents.
  • Another service such agents provide is a temporary loan.
  • If there is any doubt as to whether the agent is providing the services stated on the contract, then it may be safer merely to terminate without giving reason by serving written notice as provided in the agreement.
1.3A person who obtains information for a government or other official body, typically in secret: a trained intelligence agent KGB agents an FBI agent
More example sentences
  • As a private attorney, he works without charge to help hundreds of intelligence agents obtain lawful permission to declassify and publish the hidden secrets of our times.
  • But without the information from FBI intelligence agents, his grand jury didn't have enough evidence to return indictments.
  • The Interior Ministry will also command a domestic intelligence network made up largely of secret police and intelligence agents from the ousted government.
2A person or thing that takes an active role or produces a specified effect: agents of change bleaching agents
More example sentences
  • Using animals, they will study the development of mammary tissue and the effects of specific environmental agents.
  • Indirect evidence suggests that viruses may play a role as the environmental agent.
  • The role of moral agent has a direct effect on the patient care experience.
2.1 Grammar The doer of an action, typically expressed as the subject of an active verb or in a by phrase with a passive verb.
Example sentences
  • Through the use of the passive voice, the agent which designs ‘these carefully targeted actions’ has been left unspecified.
  • While the pivot of an intransitive clause is the core-argument of the verb, the pivot of a transitive clause is not its agent but its patient.
  • For instance, when we describe one person as having killed another, we imply that the first person - the agent of the action - caused the death of the second person.
performer, author, executor, perpetrator, producer, instrument, catalyst


Late Middle English (in the sense 'someone or something that produces an effect'): from Latin agent- 'doing', from agere.

Definition of agent in:
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