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  1. #1
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    Default "it was an act of bravery" or "it was an acti

    Dear teacher,

    It was said that "it was an act of bravery" is the correct usage. But why we should use "act" instead of "action"? What's the wrong with "action", and why "act" is correct?



    Thanks a lot for your kind assistance.


    Best Regards,
    Cicily

  2. #2
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    Dany is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: "it was an act of bravery" or "it was an

    Quote Originally Posted by Cicily21
    Dear teacher,

    It was said that "it was an act of bravery" is the correct usage. But why we should use "act" instead of "action"? What's the wrong with "action", and why "act" is correct?



    Thanks a lot for your kind assistance.


    Best Regards,
    Cicily
    Hello Cicily

    The meanings of act:
    1.) a subdivision of a play or opera or ballet
    2.) a manifestation of insincerity; "he put on quite an act for her benefit"
    3.) discharge one's duties; "She acts as the chair"; "In what capacity are you acting?"
    4.) be suitable for theatrical performance; "This scene acts well"
    5.) be engaged in an activity, often for no particular purpose other than pleasure

    The meanings of action:
    1.) something done (usually as opposed to something said); "there were stories of murders and other unnatural actions"
    2.) an act by a government body or supranational organization; "recent federal action undermined the segregationist position"
    3.) the series of events that form a plot; "his novels always have a lot of action"
    4.) the trait of being active and energetic and forceful; "a man of action"
    5.) the most important or interesting work or activity in a specific area or field; "the action is no longer in technology stocks but in municipal bonds"

    I hope that I could help you :wink:

    Kind regards,
    Dany

  3. #3
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    Default Re: "it was an act of bravery" or "it was an

    Quote Originally Posted by Dany
    Quote Originally Posted by Cicily21
    Dear teacher,

    It was said that "it was an act of bravery" is the correct usage. But why we should use "act" instead of "action"? What's the wrong with "action", and why "act" is correct?



    Thanks a lot for your kind assistance.


    Best Regards,
    Cicily
    Hello Cicily

    The meanings of act:
    1.) a subdivision of a play or opera or ballet
    2.) a manifestation of insincerity; "he put on quite an act for her benefit"
    3.) discharge one's duties; "She acts as the chair"; "In what capacity are you acting?"
    4.) be suitable for theatrical performance; "This scene acts well"
    5.) be engaged in an activity, often for no particular purpose other than pleasure

    The meanings of action:
    1.) something done (usually as opposed to something said); "there were stories of murders and other unnatural actions"
    2.) an act by a government body or supranational organization; "recent federal action undermined the segregationist position"
    3.) the series of events that form a plot; "his novels always have a lot of action"
    4.) the trait of being active and energetic and forceful; "a man of action"
    5.) the most important or interesting work or activity in a specific area or field; "the action is no longer in technology stocks but in municipal bonds"

    I hope that I could help you :wink:

    Kind regards,
    Dany

    Hello, Dany,

    Thanks a lot for your kind assistance. But I still not quite understand the usage. It's a tough question, isn't it?

    Best regards,
    Cicily

  4. #4
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    Default Re: "it was an act of bravery" or "it was an

    From Cambridge Online.

    Act and action:

    ....... that act tends to refer to a deed while action tends to refer to the process of doing.

    From its usage note in the dictionary:

    Act emphasizes what is done, rather than the process of doing, and is especially applicable to a specific, brief deed or performance by an individual. Action is the choice when process or function are stressed, and when performance is complex or long-range.

    Simply put, act is a deed whereas action is a process.

  5. #5
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default

    'Act' is a measurable piece of activity, with a beginning and an end.

  6. #6
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by tdol
    'Act' is a measurable piece of activity, with a beginning and an end.
    Act:

    Act of bravery, sex act, act of kindness, act of God, circus act...

    Action:

    Action movies, congressional actions, lack of actions...

  7. #7
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by tdol
    'Act' is a measurable piece of activity, with a beginning and an end.

    Dear teacher,

    Then, what's the difference between "with a beginning and an end" and "process". Shouls we use "act" or "action"?


    Thanks a lot!!

    Best Regards,
    Cicily

  8. #8
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    Hi,

    No teacher here; this is BMO again. When a movie scene is being shot, the director calls out "ACTION!" This is a process.

    When the movie is done, the finished product may get broken down into Act I, Act II, Act III, etc., this is an ending.

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