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(1)   Something that people do or cause to happen
(2)   A legal document codifying the result of deliberations of a committee or society or legislative body
(3)   A short theatrical performance that is part of a longer program
"He did his act three times every evening"
"She had a catchy little routine"
"It was one of the best numbers he ever did"
(4)   A subdivision of a play or opera or ballet
(5)   A manifestation of insincerity
"He put on quite an act for her benefit"


(6)   Behave in a certain manner; show a certain behavior; conduct or comport oneself
"You should act like an adult"
"Don't behave like a fool"
"What makes her do this way?"
"The dog acts ferocious, but he is really afraid of people"
(7)   Pretend to have certain qualities or state of mind
"He acted the idiot"
"She plays deaf when the news are bad"
(8)   Discharge one's duties
"She acts as the chair"
"In what capacity are you acting?"
(9)   Play a role or part
"Gielgud played Hamlet"
"She wants to act Lady Macbeth, but she is too young for the role"
"She played the servant to her husband's master"
(10)   Perform on a stage or theater
"She acts in this play"
"He acted in `Julius Caesar'"
"I played in `A Christmas Carol'"
(11)   Behave unnaturally or affectedly
"She's just acting"
(12)   Perform an action, or work out or perform (an action)
"Think before you act"
"We must move quickly"
"The governor should act on the new energy bill"
"The nanny acted quickly by grabbing the toddler and covering him with a wet towel"
(13)   Be engaged in an activity, often for no particular purpose other than pleasure
(14)   Have an effect or outcome; often the one desired or expected
"The voting process doesn't work as well as people thought"
"How does your idea work in practice?"
"This method doesn't work"
"The breaks of my new car act quickly"
"The medicine works only if you take it with a lot of water"
(15)   Be suitable for theatrical performance
"This scene acts well"


From , plural of , from .


  1. Something done, a deed.
    An act of good will.
  2. A state of existence.
  3. A product of a legislative body, a statute.
  4. The process of doing something.
    He was caught in the act.
  5. A formal or official record of something done.
  6. A division of a theatrical performance.
    The pivotal moment in the play was in the first scene of the second act.
  7. A display of behavior.

Related terms


  1. To do something.
    If you don't act soon, you will be in trouble.
  2. To perform a theatrical role.
    I started acting at the age of eleven in my local theatre.
  3. To behave in a certain way.
    He's acting strangely - I think there's something wrong with him.
  4. To convey an appearance of being.
    He acted unconcerned so the others wouldn't worry.
  5. To have an effect on.
    High-pressure oxygen acts on the central nervous system and may cause convulsions or death.
  6. To play (a role).
    He's been acting Shakespearean leads since he was twelve.
  7. To feign.
    He acted the angry parent, but was secretly amused.

Related terms