Synonyms  Antonyms

 

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Synonyms for Act


accomplishment, execution, movement, achievement, exercise, operation, action, exertion, performance, consummation, exploit, proceeding, deed, feat, transaction, doing, motion, work, effect

 

An act is strictly and originally something accomplished by an exercise of power, in which sense it is synonymous with deed or effect.

Action is a doing.

Act is therefore single, individual, momentary; action a complex of acts, or a process, state, or habit of exerting power.

We say a virtuous act, but rather a virtuous course of action. We speak of the action of an acid upon a metal, not of its act.

Act is used, also, for the simple exertion of power; as, an act of will. In this sense an act does not necessarily imply an external effect, while an action does.

Morally, the act of murder is in the determination to kill; legally, the act is not complete without the striking of the fatal blow. Act and deed are both used for the thing done, but act refers to the power put forth, deed to the result accomplished; as, a voluntary act, a bad deed.

In connection with other words act is more usually qualified by the use of another noun, action by an adjective preceding; we may say a kind act, though more often an act of kindness, but only a kind action, not an action of kindness.

As between act and deed, deed is commonly used of great, notable, and impressive acts, as are achievement, exploit, and feat.

A feat exhibits strength, skill, personal power, whether mental or physical, especially the latter; as, a feat of arms, a feat of memory.

 

An exploit is a conspicuous or glorious deed, involving valor or heroism, usually combined with strength, skill, loftiness of thought, and readiness of resource; an achievement is the doing of something great and noteworthy; an exploit is brilliant, but its effect may be transient; an achievement is solid, and its effect enduring.

Act and action are both in contrast to all that is merely passive and receptive. The intensest action is easier than passive endurance.

 

Antonyms for Act

cessation, immobility, inertia, quiet, suffering, deliberation, inaction, passion, repose, suspension, endurance, inactivity, quiescence, rest

To find another page of synonyms listed alphabetically, simply click on synonyms for act and you'll go to the main synonyms page which contains a complete listing.

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