- [noun] a person secretly employed in espionage for a government
Synonyms: secret agent, intelligence officer, intelligence agent
- [noun] someone who can be employed as a detective to collect information
Synonyms: private detective, PI, private eye, private investigator, shamus, sherlock
- [adjective] being in force or having or exerting force; "operative regulations"; "the major tendencies operative in the American political system"
- [adjective] of or relating to a surgical operation; "operative surgery"
- [adjective] relating to or requiring or amenable to treatment by surgery especially as opposed to medicine; "a surgical appendix"; "a surgical procedure"; "operative dentistry"
- [adjective] effective; producing a desired effect; "the operative word"
- [adjective] (of e.g. a machine) performing or capable of performing; "in running (or working) order"; "a functional set of brakes"
Synonyms: running, functional, working