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Do we have any difference in the meanings of the following sentences:

Kathy got infatuated towards Brad because she was highly impressed by the personalities of the characters essayed by him.

Kathy got infatuated towards Brad because she was highly impressed by the personalities of the characters played by him.

I checked the meanings of both of these words at Oxford dictionary.

play VERB with object Represent (a character) in a theatrical performance or a film.

essay VERB Attempt or try.

So, from these meanings it appears that using the word "play" is more appropriate in this case.

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    I have literally never heard anyone use the word essayed. I'm a native English speaker and I had to Google it. so it's really not common. The second would be the preferred usage. – user66866 Jan 18 '18 at 12:10
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    I agree with @Liam; I have heard the verb "to essay", but only in the context of overcoming some very difficult challenge, so it's not appropriate here. I think it's also worth noting that one gets "infatuated with" someone, never "towards" someone. – Canadian Yankee Jan 18 '18 at 15:00
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"Essay" is unusual in this sort of context, and if I read this I would interpret it that he was trying out those characters to see if they fit some purpose: without any context, I might think it meant that he was trying to trick her into someting.

"Play" does not have that suggestion.

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