Definition of Act in English :

Define Act in English

Act meaning in English

Meaning of Act in English

Pronunciation of Act in English

Act pronunciation in English

Pronounce Act in English


see synonyms of act


1. act, enactment

a legal document codifying the result of deliberations of a committee or society or legislative body

2. act, deed, human action, human activity

something that people do or cause to happen

3. act

a subdivision of a play or opera or ballet

4. act, bit, number, routine, turn

a short theatrical performance that is part of a longer program

Example Sentences:
'he did his act three times every evening'
'she had a catchy little routine'
'it was one of the best numbers he ever did'

5. act

a manifestation of insincerity

Example Sentences:
'he put on quite an act for her benefit'


6. act, move

perform an action, or work out or perform (an action)

Example Sentences:
'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'

7. act, behave, do

behave in a certain manner; show a certain behavior; conduct or comport oneself

Example Sentences:
'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'

8. act, play, represent

play a role or part

Example Sentences:
'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'

9. act

discharge one's duties

Example Sentences:
'She acts as the chair'
'In what capacity are you acting?'

10. act, act as, play

pretend to have certain qualities or state of mind

Example Sentences:
'He acted the idiot'
'She plays deaf when the news are bad'

11. act

be suitable for theatrical performance

Example Sentences:
'This scene acts well'

12. act, work

have an effect or outcome; often the one desired or expected

Example Sentences:
'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'

13. act

be engaged in an activity, often for no particular purpose other than pleasure

14. act, dissemble, pretend

behave unnaturally or affectedly

Example Sentences:
'She's just acting'

15. act, play, playact, roleplay

perform on a stage or theater

Example Sentences:
'She acts in this play'
'He acted in Julius Caesar''
'I played in A Christmas Carol''

WordNet Lexical Database for English. Princeton University. 2010.


see synonyms of act
something done or performed; a deed
the performance of some physical or mental process; action
3. (capital when part of a name)
the formally codified result of deliberation by a legislative body; a law, edict, decree, statute, etc
4. (often plural)
a formal written record of transactions, proceedings, etc, as of a society, committee, or legislative body
a major division of a dramatic work
a short performance of skill, a comic sketch, dance, etc, esp one that is part of a programme of light entertainment
those giving such a performance
an assumed attitude or pose, esp one intended to impress
8. philosophy
an occurrence effected by the volition of a human agent, usually opposed at least as regards its explanation to one which is causally determined
Compare event (sense 4)
9. (intransitive)
to do something; carry out an action
10. (intransitive)
to function in a specified way; operate; react
his mind acted quickly
to perform (a part or role) in a play, etc
12. (transitive)
to present (a play, etc) on stage
13. (intr; usually foll by for or as)
to be a substitute (for); function in place (of)
14. (intransitive; foll by as)
to serve the function or purpose (of)
the glass acted as protection
15. (intransitive)
to conduct oneself or behave (as if one were)
she usually acts like a lady
16. (intransitive)
to behave in an unnatural or affected way
17. (copula)
to pose as; play the part of
to act the fool
18. (copula)
to behave in a manner appropriate to (esp in the phrase act one's age)
19. (copula) not standard
to seem or pretend to be
to act tired
20.  clean up one's act
21.  get in on the act
22.  get one's act together
abbreviation for
Australian Capital Territory
(formerly in Britain) advance corporation tax
noun acronym for
(in New Zealand) Association of Consumers and Taxpayers: a small political party of the right

Collins English Dictionary. Copyright © HarperCollins Publishers


see synonyms of act
American College Test
a thing done; deed
an action; doing
caught in the act of stealing
a decision (of a court, legislature, etc.); law; decree
a document formally stating what has been done, made into law, etc.
one of the main divisions of a drama or opera
any of the separate performances on a variety program
a show of feeling or behavior that is not sincere and is put on just for effect
verb transitive
to play the part of
to perform in (a play)
to behave in a way suitable for
don't act the child
verb intransitive
to perform in a play, film, etc.; play a role
to behave as though playing a role
to be suited to performance
said of a play or a role
to behave; comport oneself
act like a lady
to do something
we must act now to forestall disaster
to serve or function
the fence acts as a barrier
to serve as spokesman or substitute (for)
he's acting for the committee
to have an effect
acids act on metal
to appear to be
he acted very angry

Webster’s New World College Dictionary, 4th Edition. Copyright © 2010 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.


see synonyms of act
A trademark for a standardized college entrance examination.
Australian Capital Territory
1. The process of doing or performing something: the act of thinking.
a. Something done or performed; a deed: a charitable act.
b. Law Something done that has legal significance: a criminal act.
3. A statute or other law formally adopted by a legislative body: an act of Congress.
4. A formal written record of proceedings or transactions.
5. One of the major divisions of a play, opera, or film.
a. A performance or entertainment usually forming part of a longer presentation: a juggling act; a magic act.
b. The actor or actors presenting such a performance: joined the act in Phoenix.
7. A manifestation of intentional or unintentional insincerity; a pose: put on an act.
v. act·ed, act·ing, acts
1. To play the part of; assume the dramatic role of: She plans to act Ophelia in summer stock.
2. To perform (a role) on the stage: act the part of the villain.
a. To behave like or pose as; impersonate: Don't act the fool.
b. To behave in a manner suitable for: Act your age.
1. To behave or comport oneself: She acts like a born leader.
2. To perform in a dramatic role or roles.
3. To be suitable for theatrical performance: This scene acts well.
4. To behave affectedly or unnaturally; pretend.
5. To appear or seem to be: The dog acted ferocious.
6. To carry out an action: We acted immediately. The governor has not yet acted on the bill.
7. To operate or function in a specific way: His mind acts quickly.
8. To serve or function as a substitute for another: A coin can act as a screwdriver.
9. To produce an effect: waited five minutes for the anesthetic to act.

The American Heritage ® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.