act

{{11}}act (n.) late 14c., "a thing done," from O.Fr. acte " (official) document," and directly from L. actus "a doing, a driving, impulse; a part in a play, act," and actum "a thing done," originally a legal term, both from agere "to do, set in motion, drive, urge, chase, stir up," from PIE root *ag- "to drive, draw out or forth, move" (Cf. Gk. agein "to lead, guide, drive, carry off," agon "assembly, contest in the games," agogos "leader;" Skt. ajati "drives," ajirah "moving, active;" O.N. aka "to drive;" M.Ir. ag "battle").
Theatrical ("part of a play," 1510s) and legislative (early 15c.) senses of the word also were in Latin. Meaning "display of exaggerated behavior" is from 1928. In the act "in the process" is from 1590s, perhaps originally from the 16c. sense of the act as "sexual intercourse." Act of God "uncontrollable natural force" recorded by 1726.
An act of God is an accident which arises from a cause which operates without interference or aid from man (1 Pars. on Cont. 635); the loss arising wherefrom cannot be guarded against by the ordinary exertions of human skill and prudence so as to prevent its effect. [William Wait, "General Principles of the Law," Albany, 1879]
{{12}}act (v.) mid-15c., "to act upon or adjudicate" a legal case; 1590s in the theatrical sense, from L. actus, pp. of agere (see ACT (Cf. act) (n.)). To act up "be unruly" is from 1903. To act out "behave anti-socially" (1974) is from psychiatric sense of "expressing one's unconscious impulses or desires." Related: Acted; ACTING (Cf. acting).

Etymology dictionary. 2014.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • ACT-R — (pronounced act ARE : Adaptive Control of Thought Rational) is a cognitive architecture mainly developed by John Robert Anderson at Carnegie Mellon University. Like any cognitive architecture, ACT R aims to define the basic and irreducible… …   Wikipedia

  • Act-Up — Paris Date de création 1989 Réunion hebdomadaire tous les jeudis à 19 h à l École des Beaux Arts 14, rue Bonaparte 75006 Paris Nombre d adhérents 150 revendiqués Site internet …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Act Up — Paris Date de création 1989 Réunion hebdomadaire tous les jeudis à 19 h à l École des Beaux Arts 14, rue Bonaparte 75006 Paris Nombre d adhérents 150 revendiqués Site internet …   Wikipédia en Français

  • act — 1 n 1 a: something done by a person in accordance with his or her free will a tortious act see also actus reus b: the failure to do something that one has a legal duty to do – called also negative act; 2 a …   Law dictionary

  • ACT! — Entwickler Sage Betriebssystem Microsoft Windows Kategorie CRM Software Lizenz proprietär …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Act Up — Logo Die Bewegung Act Up (AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power „AIDS Koalition um Kraft zu entfesseln“) entstand 1987 in New York (USA) um durch neue öffentlichkeitswirksame Aktionen mehr Dynamik und Politisierung in die Thematisierung von Aids zu… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • act — ACT, acte, s.n. 1. Document eliberat, emis etc. de o autoritate prin care se arată un fapt, o obligaţie, identitatea cuiva etc. ♢ Act de acuzare = concluzie scrisă întocmită de organele judiciare spre a dovedi vinovăţia cuiva. 2. Manifestare a… …   Dicționar Român

  • Act — oder Act steht für: Act (Musik), Musikformation ACT (Plattenlabel), ein Jazz Platten Label in Feldafing, gegründet von Siegfried Loch ACT!, eine Customer Relationship Management Anwendung ACT (Software), eine CRM Software von Sage (früher von… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Act — ([a^]kt), n. [L. actus, fr. agere to drive, do: cf. F. acte. See {Agent}.] 1. That which is done or doing; the exercise of power, or the effect, of which power exerted is the cause; a performance; a deed. [1913 Webster] That best portion of a… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Act — or ACT may mean:* Act of Parliament (Act of Congress in the USA) a statute or law passed by a legislature. * Act (band), a British band * ACT New Zealand, a New Zealand political party * Act (document), a document recording the legality of a… …   Wikipedia

  • ACT — oder Act steht für: Act (Musik), Musikformation ACT (Plattenlabel), ein Jazz Platten Label in Feldafing, gegründet von Siegfried Loch ACT!, eine Customer Relationship Management Anwendung ACT New Zealand, eine politische Partei in Neuseeland,… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.