- an event or series of events that form part of a dramatic plot: the action of a scene.
- one of the three unities.Compare unity(def 8).
- a proceeding instituted by one party against another.
- the right of bringing it.
- interesting or exciting activity, often of an illicit nature: He gave us some tips on where the action was.
- gambling or the excitement of gambling: The casino usually offers plenty of action.
- money bet in gambling, especially illegally.
- a religious ceremony, especially a Eucharistic service.
- the canon of the Mass.
- those parts of a service of worship in which the congregation participates.
- performing or taking part in a characteristic act: The school baseball team is in action tonight.
- working; functioning: His rescuing the child was bravery in action.
- to start doing something: As soon as we get his decision, we'll take action.
- to start a legal procedure.
Origin of action
Synonyms for action
Antonyms for action
noun U.S. Government.
Origin of ACTION
Examples from the Web for actions
Contemporary Examples of actions
[These actions] call into question not only their judgment but how true the effort is to expanding into those communities.GOP Boss Gets Help From ‘White Hate’ Pal
December 30, 2014
“Internationally there has been a lot of horror and contempt for her actions, domestically very little,” he said.Sisi Is Persecuting, Prosecuting, and Publicly Shaming Egypt’s Gays
December 30, 2014
Still, his conviction will restart a House Ethics Committee investigation into his actions.The Felon Who Wouldn’t Leave Congress
Ben Jacobs, David Freedlander
December 23, 2014
The actions of North Korea this week should also send a clear message about the danger of this regime.The Sony Hack and America’s Craven Capitulation To Terror
December 19, 2014
“If a house is accused of problems such as sexual assault, then I believe that actions should take place on that house,” he says.Fraternities in a Post-UVA World
December 12, 2014
Historical Examples of actions
I have been acquainted with her character and actions for several years.Harriet, The Moses of Her People
Sarah H. Bradford
But I told him, I would judge him by his own rule—by his actions, not by his professions.Clarissa, Volume 1 (of 9)
But he was forty, and the methods of that many years must still govern his actions.Thoroughbreds
W. A. Fraser
The question struck them both as particularly inane, in view of his actions.Chip, of the Flying U
B. M. Bower
These pages may serve to record the actions of brave and skilful men.The Story of the Malakand Field Force
Sir Winston S. Churchill
- a legal proceeding brought by one party against another, seeking redress of a wrong or recovery of what is due; lawsuit
- the right to bring such a proceeding
- a property of a system expressed as twice the mean kinetic energy of the system over a given time interval multiplied by the time interval
- the product of work or energy and time, usually expressed in joule secondsPlanck's constant of action
- a minor engagement
- fighting at sea or on landhe saw action in the war
Word Origin for action
mid-14c., "cause or grounds for a lawsuit," from Anglo-French accioun, Old French accion (12c.) "action, lawsuit, case," from Latin actionem (nominative actio) "a putting in motion; a performing, doing," noun of action from past participle stem of agere "to do" (see act (v.)). Sense of "something done, an act, deed" is late 14c. Meaning "fighting" is from c.1600. As a film director's command, it is attested from 1923. Meaning "excitement" is recorded from 1968. Phrase actions speak louder than words is attested from 1731.
In addition to the idioms beginning with action
- actions speak louder than words
- all talk and no action
- piece of the action
- swing into action