There are 2 translations of act in Spanish:


Pronunciation: /ækt/

intransitive verb/verbo intransitivo

  • 1 1.1 (take action, do sth) actuar* I'm acting on behalf of my client actúo en representación de mi cliente we must act now tenemos que tomar medidas inmediatamente
    More example sentences
    • This body must act now to urge our fellow legislators in the United States Senate to alleviate this crisis.
    • In the wake of Silent Spring all industrialised societies acted to reduce pollution.
    • We must act before we are punished for moving too slowly.
    1.2 (function, work) [drug/chemical] hacer* efecto, actuar* it will take a while to act tardará un rato en hacer efecto
    More example sentences
    • Police believe their presence also acts as a deterrent against other crimes.
    • Jody acts as a foster mum and he had to hand feed the four every three hours for the first four days.
    • The forum is also looking for volunteers to act as rangers along the trail.
    More example sentences
    • Thus, the competition between monovalent and divalent cations acts only on the DNA sites and does not act on the mica sites.
    • Drug use was pandemic at these shows because drugs act to trigger the transformation into the private self.
    • The scientists further found that the crumpled ball displayed a phenomenon known as hysteresis, in which the effect of forces acting upon an object lags behind its cause.
    1.3 (serve) to act as sth servir* de algo this will act as a warning esto servirá de advertencia she will act as interpreter hará de intérprete
    More example sentences
    • According to the new regulations, a representative who acts on behalf of visa-seekers must be authorised and could be an immigration consultant with good standing in the Canadian Society of Immigration Consultants.
    • It is about time the party stopped its pretence of acting on behalf of all the people when the only people it represents are the well off, big business and the privileged.
    • The first stages of a High Court hearing will be heard later this month involving a Dublin law firm acting on behalf of up to 12 individual clients.
    (acting present participle/participio presente)
    [chairman/director/head] interino
  • 2 (behave) comportarse, actuar* they acted irresponsibly actuaron or se comportaron de forma irresponsable just act as if nothing had happened haz como si no hubiera pasado nada sorry, I acted like a fool perdón, fui muy tonto or me comporté como un tonto stop acting like a child! ¡no seas infantil! she always acts very polite toward us [colloquial/familiar] siempre es muy cortés con nosotros
    More example sentences
    • It seems to me like women have to grin and bear a lot, and still feel pressure to act like saintly selfless birth goddesses.
    • Their main function is to act like an annoying salesperson who wouldn't take no for an answer.
    • In order to acclimate him to the wild, Dolittle must teach him the ways of nature and how to act like a real bear.
  • 3 3.1 (perform) actuar*, trabajar; (as profession) ser* actor/actriz she's always wanted to act siempre ha querido ser actriz 3.2 (pretend) he acted all nonchalant [colloquial/familiar] hizo como si no le importara don't act innocent/dumb with me! ¡no te hagas el inocente/tonto conmigo!
    More example sentences
    • He is still afraid of accepting film roles, despite having acted in more than 300 films over the past 29 years.
    • He has also acted in a prominent role in a Telugu film.
    • Boorman, son of the director John Boorman, had acted in 24 films since a childhood role in Deliverance in 1972.

transitive verb/verbo transitivo

  • 1.1 (perform) [role/part] interpretar, hacer* the play was very well acted la obra estuvo muy bien interpretada or actuada 1.2 (behave like, play role of) hacerse* it's no use acting the innocent es inútil que te hagas el inocente
    More example sentences
    • She'd planned to act dumb and pretend she'd never known he was there.
    • So the suspicion remains that his main desire is merely to appear to be acting tough - whether or not what he suggests will make any difference.
    • He acted shocked then pretended to weep.


  • 1 (deed) acto (masculine) it was a foolish/brave act fue una locura/un acto de valentía an act of aggression una agresión an act of treason una traición the government's latest act was to free the prisoners la última acción del gobierno fue liberar a los prisioneros destroying the animal was an act of kindness sacrificar al animal fue un acto piadoso these acts of violence will not go unpunished estos actos de violencia no quedarán impunes my first act was to … lo primero que hice fue … by an act of God [Law/Derecho] por caso fortuito, por acto de la naturaleza the Acts of the Apostles los Hechos de los Apóstoles I was just in the act of writing to you precisamente te estaba escribiendo to catch sb in the act agarrar or (especially Spain/especialmente España) coger* a algn con las manos en la masa, sorprender a algn in fraganti
  • 2 (law) ley (feminine) an act of Parliament/Congress una ley aprobada por el Parlamento/Congreso to pass an act aprobar* una ley
  • 3 3.1 (division of play) acto (masculine) a one-act play una obra de teatro de un solo acto a play in three acts una obra en tres actos 3.2 (routine) número (masculine) a comedy/juggling act un número cómico/de malabarismo it's time for the government to change its act ya es hora de que el gobierno cambie su enfoque to be a hard o difficult act to follow ser* difícil de igualar to do a disappearing o vanishing act esfumarse como por arte de magia to get into o in on the act meterse en el asunto to get one's act together organizarse*, hacer* las cosas como Dios manda to smarten up one's act enmendarse*

Phrasal verbs

act for

verb + preposition + object/verbo + preposición + complemento
(represent) representar

act on

verb + preposition + object/verbo + preposición + complemento
1.1 (follow) [advice] seguir*; [orders] cumplir until the problem is recognized and acted on … hasta que se reconozca el problema y se actúe or se proceda en consecuencia … acting on information received, the police made two arrests actuando sobre la base de información recibida, la policía realizó dos arrestos she took a decision, but failed to act on it tomó una decisión pero no obró en consecuencia 1.2 (affect) [drug/chemical/force] actuar* sobre the drug acts on the nervous system el fármaco actúa sobre el sistema nervioso

act out

verb + object + adverb, verb + adverb + object/verbo + complemento + adverbio, verbo + adverbio + complemento
representar she acted out what she had seen nos hizo una demostración de lo que había visto the drama was acted out before our eyes la tragedia ocurrió or se desarrolló ante nuestros propios ojos

act up

verb + adverb/verbo + adverbio
(cause trouble) [colloquial/familiar] [child/machine/car] dar* guerra [colloquial/familiar] my back's been acting up again la espalda me ha estado fastidiando otra vez [colloquial/familiar]

act upon

act on

Definition of act in: