from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To realize in action or make real: "More flexible life patterns could . . . nurture and renew our spirits through opportunities to actualize personal dreams” ( Fred Best).
  • transitive v. To describe or portray realistically.
  • intransitive v. To become actual.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To make real; to realize.
  • v. To become actual or real.
  • v. To realize one's full potential.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • transitive v. To make actual; to realize in action.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To make actual. Also spelled actualise.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. represent or describe realistically
  • v. make real or concrete; give reality or substance to


Sorry, no etymologies found.



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  • "To make our Feelings, with their vital warmth, actualize our Reason." -The Friend, 1809

    Betcha thought this was born out of late-20th-century corporate jargon, didn't ya? Nope. Coleridge verbed actual more than a century prior.

    March 5, 2018