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3 definitions found
 for Act of grace
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Grace \Grace\ (gr[=a]s), n. [F. gr[^a]ce, L. gratia, from gratus
     beloved, dear, agreeable; perh. akin to Gr. ? to rejoice,
     cha`ris favor, grace, Skr. hary to desire, and E. yearn. Cf.
     Grateful, Gratis.]
     1. The exercise of love, kindness, mercy, favor; disposition
        to benefit or serve another; favor bestowed or privilege
        conferred.
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              To bow and sue for grace
              With suppliant knee.                  --Milton.
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     2. (Theol.) The divine favor toward man; the mercy of God, as
        distinguished from His justice; also, any benefits His
        mercy imparts; divine love or pardon; a state of
        acceptance with God; enjoyment of the divine favor.
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              And if by grace, then is it no more of works. --Rom.
                                                    xi. 6.
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              My grace is sufficicnt for thee.      --2 Cor. xii.
                                                    9.
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              Where sin abounded, grace did much more abound.
                                                    --Rom. v. 20.
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              By whom also we have access by faith into this grace
              wherein we stand.                     --Rom. v.2
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     3. (Law)
        (a) The prerogative of mercy execised by the executive, as
            pardon.
        (b) The same prerogative when exercised in the form of
            equitable relief through chancery.
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     4. Fortune; luck; -- used commonly with hard or sorry when it
        means misfortune. [Obs.] --Chaucer.
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     5. Inherent excellence; any endowment or characteristic
        fitted to win favor or confer pleasure or benefit.
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              He is complete in feature and in mind.
              With all good grace to grace a gentleman. --Shak.
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              I have formerly given the general character of Mr.
              Addison's style and manner as natural and
              unaffected, easy and polite, and full of those
              graces which a flowery imagination diffuses over
              writing.                              --Blair.
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     6. Beauty, physical, intellectual, or moral; loveliness;
        commonly, easy elegance of manners; perfection of form.
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              Grace in women gains the affections sooner, and
              secures them longer, than any thing else. --Hazlitt.
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              I shall answer and thank you again For the gift and
              the grace of the gift.                --Longfellow.
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     7. pl. (Myth.) Graceful and beautiful females, sister
        goddesses, represented by ancient writers as the
        attendants sometimes of Apollo but oftener of Venus. They
        were commonly mentioned as three in number; namely,
        Aglaia, Euphrosyne, and Thalia, and were regarded as the
        inspirers of the qualities which give attractiveness to
        wisdom, love, and social intercourse.
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              The Graces love to weave the rose.    --Moore.
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              The Loves delighted, and the Graces played. --Prior.
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     8. The title of a duke, a duchess, or an archbishop, and
        formerly of the king of England.
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              How fares your Grace !                --Shak.
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     9. (Commonly pl.) Thanks. [Obs.]
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              Yielding graces and thankings to their lord
              Melibeus.                             --Chaucer.
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     10. A petition for grace; a blessing asked, or thanks
         rendered, before or after a meal.
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     11. pl. (Mus.) Ornamental notes or short passages, either
         introduced by the performer, or indicated by the
         composer, in which case the notation signs are called
         grace notes, appeggiaturas, turns, etc.
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     12. (Eng. Universities) An act, vote, or decree of the
         government of the institution; a degree or privilege
         conferred by such vote or decree. --Walton.
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     13. pl. A play designed to promote or display grace of
         motion. It consists in throwing a small hoop from one
         player to another, by means of two sticks in the hands of
         each. Called also grace hoop or hoops.
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     Act of grace. See under Act.
  
     Day of grace (Theol.), the time of probation, when the
        offer of divine forgiveness is made and may be accepted.
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              That day of grace fleets fast away.   --I. Watts.
  
     Days of grace (Com.), the days immediately following the
        day when a bill or note becomes due, which days are
        allowed to the debtor or payer to make payment in. In
        Great Britain and the United States, the days of grace are
        three, but in some countries more, the usages of merchants
        being different.
  
     Good graces, favor; friendship.
  
     Grace cup.
         (a) A cup or vessel in which a health is drunk after
             grace.
         (b) A health drunk after grace has been said.
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                   The grace cup follows to his sovereign's
                   health.                          --Hing.
  
     Grace drink, a drink taken on rising from the table; a
        grace cup.
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              To [Queen Margaret, of Scotland] . . . we owe the
              custom of the grace drink, she having established it
              as a rule at her table, that whosoever staid till
              grace was said was rewarded with a bumper. --Encyc.
                                                    Brit.
  
     Grace hoop, a hoop used in playing graces. See Grace, n.,
        13.
  
     Grace note (Mus.), an appoggiatura. See Appoggiatura, and
        def. 11 above.
  
     Grace stroke, a finishing stoke or touch; a coup de grace.
        
  
     Means of grace, means of securing knowledge of God, or
        favor with God, as the preaching of the gospel, etc.
  
     To do grace, to reflect credit upon.
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              Content to do the profession some grace. --Shak.
  
     To say grace, to render thanks before or after a meal.
  
     With a good grace, in a fit and proper manner grace fully;
        graciously.
  
     With a bad grace, in a forced, reluctant, or perfunctory
        manner; ungraciously.
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              What might have been done with a good grace would at
              least
              be done with a bad grace.             --Macaulay.
  
     Syn: Elegance; comeliness; charm; favor; kindness; mercy.
  
     Usage: Grace, Mercy. These words, though often
            interchanged, have each a distinctive and peculiar
            meaning. Grace, in the strict sense of the term, is
            spontaneous favor to the guilty or undeserving; mercy
            is kindness or compassion to the suffering or
            condemned. It was the grace of God that opened a way
            for the exercise of mercy toward men. See Elegance.
            [1913 Webster]

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Act \Act\ ([a^]kt), n. [L. actus, fr. agere to drive, do: cf. F.
     acte. See Agent.]
     1. That which is done or doing; the exercise of power, or the
        effect, of which power exerted is the cause; a
        performance; a deed.
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              That best portion of a good man's life,
              His little, nameless, unremembered acts
              Of kindness and of love.              --Wordsworth.
        [1913 Webster] Hence, in specific uses:
        (a) The result of public deliberation; the decision or
            determination of a legislative body, council, court of
            justice, etc.; a decree, edit, law, judgment, resolve,
            award; as, an act of Parliament, or of Congress.
        (b) A formal solemn writing, expressing that something has
            been done. --Abbott.
        (c) A performance of part of a play; one of the principal
            divisions of a play or dramatic work in which a
            certain definite part of the action is completed.
        (d) A thesis maintained in public, in some English
            universities, by a candidate for a degree, or to show
            the proficiency of a student.
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     2. A state of reality or real existence as opposed to a
        possibility or possible existence. [Obs.]
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              The seeds of plants are not at first in act, but in
              possibility, what they afterward grow to be.
                                                    --Hooker.
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     3. Process of doing; action. In act, in the very doing; on
        the point of (doing). "In act to shoot." --Dryden.
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              This woman was taken . . . in the very act. --John
                                                    viii. 4.
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     Act of attainder. (Law) See Attainder.
  
     Act of bankruptcy (Law), an act of a debtor which renders
        him liable to be adjudged a bankrupt.
  
     Act of faith. (Ch. Hist.) See Auto-da-F['e].
  
     Act of God (Law), an inevitable accident; such
        extraordinary interruption of the usual course of events
        as is not to be looked for in advance, and against which
        ordinary prudence could not guard.
  
     Act of grace, an expression often used to designate an act
        declaring pardon or amnesty to numerous offenders, as at
        the beginning of a new reign.
  
     Act of indemnity, a statute passed for the protection of
        those who have committed some illegal act subjecting them
        to penalties. --Abbott.
  
     Act in pais, a thing done out of court (anciently, in the
        country), and not a matter of record.
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     Syn: See Action.
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From Bouvier's Law Dictionary, Revised 6th Ed (1856) :

  ACT OF GRACE, Scotch law. The name by which the statute which provides for
  the aliment of prisoners confined for civil debts, is usually known.
       2. This statute provides that where a prisoner for debt declares upon
  oath, before the magistrate of the jurisdiction, that he has not wherewith
  to maintain himself, the magistrate may set him it liberty, if the creditor,
  in consequence of whose diligence he was imprisoned, does not aliment him
  within ten days after intimation for that purpose. 1695, c. 32; Ersk. Pr. L.
  Scot. 4, 3, 14. This is somewhat similar to a provision in the insolvent act
  of Pennsylvania.
  
  

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