From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Act \Act\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Acted; p. pr. & vb. n.
   Acting.] [L. actus, p. p. of agere to drive, lead, do; but
   influenced by E. act, n.]
   1. To move to action; to actuate; to animate. [Obs.]
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            Self-love, the spring of motion, acts the soul.
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   2. To perform; to execute; to do. [Archaic]
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            That we act our temporal affairs with a desire no
            greater than our necessity.           --Jer. Taylor.
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            Industry doth beget by producing good habits, and
            facility of acting things expedient for us to do.
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            Uplifted hands that at convenient times
            Could act extortion and the worst of crimes.
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   3. To perform, as an actor; to represent dramatically on the
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   4. To assume the office or character of; to play; to
      personate; as, to act the hero.
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   5. To feign or counterfeit; to simulate.
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            With acted fear the villain thus pursued. --Dryden.
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   To act a part, to sustain the part of one of the characters
      in a play; hence, to simulate; to dissemble.

   To act the part of, to take the character of; to fulfill
      the duties of.
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From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Act \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.
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            That best portion of a good man's life,
            His little, nameless, unremembered acts
            Of kindness and of love.              --Wordsworth.
      [1913 Webster] Hence, in specific uses:
      (a) The result of public deliberation; the decision or
          determination of a legislative body, council, court of
          justice, etc.; a decree, edit, law, judgment, resolve,
          award; as, an act of Parliament, or of Congress.
      (b) A formal solemn writing, expressing that something has
          been done. --Abbott.
      (c) A performance of part of a play; one of the principal
          divisions of a play or dramatic work in which a
          certain definite part of the action is completed.
      (d) A thesis maintained in public, in some English
          universities, by a candidate for a degree, or to show
          the proficiency of a student.
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   2. A state of reality or real existence as opposed to a
      possibility or possible existence. [Obs.]
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            The seeds of plants are not at first in act, but in
            possibility, what they afterward grow to be.
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   3. Process of doing; action. In act, in the very doing; on
      the point of (doing). "In act to shoot." --Dryden.
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            This woman was taken . . . in the very act. --John
                                                  viii. 4.
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   Act of attainder. (Law) See Attainder.

   Act of bankruptcy (Law), an act of a debtor which renders
      him liable to be adjudged a bankrupt.

   Act of faith. (Ch. Hist.) See Auto-da-F['e].

   Act of God (Law), an inevitable accident; such
      extraordinary interruption of the usual course of events
      as is not to be looked for in advance, and against which
      ordinary prudence could not guard.

   Act of grace, an expression often used to designate an act
      declaring pardon or amnesty to numerous offenders, as at
      the beginning of a new reign.

   Act of indemnity, a statute passed for the protection of
      those who have committed some illegal act subjecting them
      to penalties. --Abbott.

   Act in pais, a thing done out of court (anciently, in the
      country), and not a matter of record.
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   Syn: See Action.
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From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Act \Act\, v. i.
   1. To exert power; to produce an effect; as, the stomach acts
      upon food.
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   2. To perform actions; to fulfill functions; to put forth
      energy; to move, as opposed to remaining at rest; to carry
      into effect a determination of the will.
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            He hangs between, in doubt to act or rest. --Pope.
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   3. To behave or conduct, as in morals, private duties, or
      public offices; to bear or deport one's self; as, we know
      not why he has acted so.
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   4. To perform on the stage; to represent a character.
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            To show the world how Garrick did not act. --Cowper.
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   To act as or To act for, to do the work of; to serve as.

   To act on, to regulate one's conduct according to.

   To act up to, to equal in action; to fulfill in practice;
      as, he has acted up to his engagement or his advantages.
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