hi PF. What is exactly a conservative field? I know the mathematical definitions such as the existence of a scalar potential, the curl of the field equals 0 (irrotational), path independence etc. But I still don't get a physical understanding of such a field. What's the significance of identifying whether a field is conservative or not? I know the gravitational field is a conservative field. But it seems to me that it is just a matter of terminology... Please inspire me.