active (adj.) Look up active at Dictionary.com
mid-14c., "given to worldly activity" (opposed to contemplative or monastic), from Old French actif (12c.) and directly from Latin activus, from actus "a doing" (see act (n.)). As "capable of acting" (opposed to passive), from late 14c. Meaning "energetic, lively" is from 1590s; that of "working, effective, in operation" (opposed to inactive ) is from 1640s. Active voice is recorded from 1765; grammatical use of active, signifying performance and not endurance of an action, dates from mid-15c. (opposed to passive or reflexive).