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actress

[ak-tris] /ˈæk trɪs/
noun
1.
a woman who acts in stage plays, motion pictures, television broadcasts, etc., especially professionally.
Origin
1580-1590
1580-90; act(o)r + -ess
Usage note
See -ess.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for actresses

actress

/ˈæktrɪs/
noun
1.
a woman who acts in a play, film, broadcast, etc
2.
(informal) a woman who puts on a false manner in order to deceive others
Usage note
Use of the word actress to refer to a female who acts is old-fashioned. The modern gender-neutral form is actor
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for actresses

actress

n.

1580s, "female who does something;" see actor + -ess; stage sense is from 1700. Sometimes French actrice was used.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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