Dictionary > English Dictionary > Definition, synonym and antonym of actual
Meaning of actual by Wiktionary Dictionary



    Middle English actual, actuel ( “active” ), from Old French actuel, actual, from Late Latin actualis ( “active, practical” ), from Latin actus ( “act, action, performance” ),, from agere ( “to do; to act” ) + -alis ( “-al” ) .


    • ( US ) IPA: /ˈæk.( t )ʃʊ.əl/, /ˈæk.( t )ʃəl/
    • ( RP ) IPA: /ˈæktʃju.əl/, /ˈæktʃʊ.əl/


    actual ( not comparable )

    1. Existing in act or reality, not just potentially; really acted or acting; occurring in fact
      the actual cost of goods
      the actual case under discussion
    2. Factual, real, not just apparent or even false
      The actual government expenses dramatically excede the budget
    3. In action at the time being; now existing .
      The actual situation of the world economy is worse then anyone expected a year ago
    4. ( obsolete ) Active, not passive
    5. Used to emphasise a noun or verb, whether something is real or metaphorical .

    Usage notes



    Derived terms

    Related terms

    • activity
    • actor
    • actuary

    See also


    actual ( plural: actuals )

    1. An actual, real one; notably:
      1. ( finance ) Something actually received; real receipts, as distinct from estimated ones .
      2. ( military ) A radio callsign modifier that specifies the commanding officer of the unit or asset denoted by the remainder of the callsign and not the officer's assistant or other designee .
      "Bravo Six Actual, Snakebite leader" ( The person with the callsign "Snakebite leader" requests to speak to the commander of company Bravo and not the radio operator. )

    See also

    1. ^ “She Literally Exploded : The Daily Telegraph Infuriating Phrasebook”, Christopher Howse and Richard Preston ( Constable‧London, 2007; ISBN 978‒1‒84529‒675‒9 ), page 3

    External links

    • actual in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913
    • actual in The Century Dictionary, The Century Co., New York, 1911


    • acault

Explanation of actual by Wordnet Dictionary


    1. presently existing in fact and not merely potential or possible

    2. the predicted temperature and the actual temperature were markedly different
      actual and imagined conditions
    3. being or existing at the present moment

    4. the ship's actual position is 22 miles due south of Key West
    5. taking place in reality

    6. we saw the actual wedding on television
      filmed the actual beating
    7. existing in act or fact

    8. rocks and trees...the actual world
      actual heroism
      the actual things that produced the emotion you experienced
    9. being or reflecting the essential or genuine character of something

    10. her actual motive

    Definition of actual by GCIDE Dictionary


    1. Actual ( #; 135 ), a. [OE. actuel, F. actuel, L. actualis, fr. agere to do, act.]
      1. Involving or comprising action; active. [Obs.]

      Her walking and other actual performances. Shak.

      Let your holy and pious intention be actual; that is . . . by a special prayer or action, . . . given to God. Jer. Taylor.

      2. Existing in act or reality; really acted or acting; in fact; real; -- opposed to potential, possible, virtual, speculative, conceivable, theoretical, or nominal; as, “the actual cost of goods; the actual case under discussion.”

      3. In action at the time being; now exiting; present; as the actual situation of the country.

      Actual cautery. See under Cautery. -- Actual sin ( Theol. ), that kind of sin which is done by ourselves in contradistinction to “original sin.”

      Syn. -- Real; genuine; positive; certain. See Real.

    2. Actual n. ( Finance ) Something actually received; real, as distinct from estimated, receipts. [Cant]

      The accounts of revenues supplied . . . were not real receipts: not, in financial language, “actuals,” but only Egyptian budget estimates. Fortnightly Review.