activity

noun
ac·​tiv·​i·​ty | \ ak-ˈti-və-tē \
plural activities

Definition of activity

1 : the quality or state of being active : behavior or actions of a particular kind physical activity criminal activity economic activity
2 : vigorous or energetic action : liveliness a scene of excitement and activity
3 : natural or normal function: such as
a : a process (such as digestion) that an organism carries on or participates in by virtue of being alive
b : a similar process actually or potentially involving mental function specifically : an educational procedure designed to stimulate learning by firsthand experience
4 : an active force
5a : a pursuit in which a person is active business activities social activities
b : a form of organized, supervised, often extracurricular recreation The camp offers hiking, swimming, and other activities.
6 : an organizational unit for performing a specific function also : its function or duties the restaurant inspection activity of the health department

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Examples of activity in a Sentence

The holidays always set off a lot of activity in our home. the sexual activity of married couples The police are now monitoring criminal activity in the area. She gets at least 30 minutes of physical activity every day. The instruments are used to detect volcanic activity on the island. We planned an activity for the children.
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Recent Examples on the Web

In December, Chinese factory activity hit its lowest level in nearly three years, and official data showed that profits from big Chinese industrial firms declined in November for the first time in three years. Ruth Bender, WSJ, "Robotics Company Fuels Concerns about China Slowdown," 11 Jan. 2019 Henrik Vibskov and White Mountaineering, which follow Dior’s original time, both settled on venues in the far stretches of the 5th Arrondissement, nowhere near any potential gilets jaunes activity. Amy Verner, Vogue, "First Dior Men, Now Thom Browne—The Gilets Jaunes Are Impacting the Fall ’19 Paris Men’s Shows," 9 Jan. 2019 The sneak peek shows Chief Boden (Eamonn Walker) asking Sylvie Brett (Kara Killmer) and Emily Foster (Annie Ilonzeh) to handle a community outreach activity at a local high school. Kelly O'sullivan, Country Living, "A Terrifying 'Chicago Fire' Sneak Peek Shows Casey Fighting for His Life," 8 Jan. 2019 The idea of a flat Earth is a good place to start with this, given that the evidence for its spherical nature goes back to long before the existence of science as an organized activity. John Timmer, Ars Technica, "Why does flat Earth belief still exist?," 28 Dec. 2018 The Vendor Fair and all daytime activities are free (no tickets needed) from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday to Saturday. Taylor Mead, House Beautiful, "6 Things You Should Know About Chip And Joanna Gaines's Magnolia Silobration," 17 Oct. 2018 Oh, and there are some lawsuits (whistleblowers, shareholders) and a case that union activity was being illegally suppressed. Elizabeth Lopatto, The Verge, "Elon Musk is the first influencer CEO," 21 Dec. 2018 And never associate your recall word with an unpleasant activity for your dog, like nail trimming or bathing. Woman's Day Staff, Woman's Day, "This Abandoned Shelter Dog Rescued the Missing Son of Her Former Trainer," 20 Nov. 2018 Kasbani, who uses one name, said volcanic activity had been increasing at Soputan since August and began surging Monday. Fox News, "Volcano erupts on same Indonesian island as earlier quake," 3 Oct. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'activity.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of activity

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for activity

Middle English actyvete "active life," borrowed from Middle French & Medieval Latin; Middle French activité "power of acting, exercise of this power," borrowed from Medieval Latin āctīvitāt-, āctīvitās (Late Latin, "active form of a verb"), from Latin āctīvus active entry 1 + -itāt-, -itās -ity

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Statistics for activity

Last Updated

16 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for activity

The first known use of activity was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for activity

activity

noun

English Language Learners Definition of activity

: the state of being active : behavior or actions of a particular kind

: something that is done as work or for a particular purpose

: something that is done for pleasure and that usually involves a group of people

activity

noun
ac·​tiv·​i·​ty | \ ak-ˈti-və-tē \
plural activities

Kids Definition of activity

1 : energetic action There is always activity around the holidays.
2 : something done especially for relaxation or fun Summer camp provides a variety of activities for kids.

activity

noun
ac·​tiv·​i·​ty | \ ak-ˈtiv-ət-ē \
plural activities

Medical Definition of activity

1 : natural or normal function: as
a : a process (as digestion) that an organism carries on or participates in by virtue of being alive
b : a similar process actually or potentially involving mental function specifically : an educational procedure designed to stimulate learning by firsthand experience
2 : the characteristic of acting chemically or of promoting a chemical reaction the activity of a catalyst

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Comments on activity

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