• (RP) IPA: /ˈpəʊt(ə)nt/
  • (GA) enPR: pōtʹnt IPA: /ˈpoʊt(ə)nt/, [ˈpʰoʊ̯ʔn̩t], [-n̩ʔ]


  1. Possessing strength.
    a potent argument
    • 1914, Louis Joseph Vance, chapter I, in Nobody, New York, N.Y.: George H[enry] Doran Company, published 1915, OCLC 40817384 ↗:
      Little disappointed, then, she turned attention to "Chat of the Social World," gossip which exercised potent fascination upon the girl's intelligence.
  2. Powerfully effective.
    a potent medicine
  3. Having a sharp or offensive taste.
  4. (of a male) Able to procreate.
  5. Very powerful or effective.
    • 1611 April (first recorded performance), William Shakespeare, “The Tragedie of Cymbeline”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358 ↗, [Act V, scene iv]:
      harsh and potent injuries
    • 1667, John Milton, “Book 10”, in Paradise Lost. A Poem Written in Ten Books, London: Printed [by Samuel Simmons], and are to be sold by Peter Parker […] [a]nd by Robert Boulter […] [a]nd Matthias Walker, […], OCLC 228722708 ↗; republished as Paradise Lost in Ten Books: The Text Exactly Reproduced from the First Edition of 1667: […], London: Basil Montagu Pickering […], 1873, OCLC 230729554 ↗:
      Moses once more his potent rod extends.
Translations Noun

potent (plural potents)

  1. (tincture) A heraldic fur formed by a regular tessellation of blue and white T shapes.
  2. (obsolete) A prince; a potentate.
  3. (obsolete) A staff or crutch.
Antonyms Related terms

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