**The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:**

Potential \Po*ten"tial\, n.
1. Anything that may be possible; a possibility; potentially.
--Bacon.
[1913 Webster]
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 coordinates
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.
[1913 Webster]
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.
[1913 Webster]