One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
In early use: †stage performance generally; acting (obsolete). Now: specifically the rehearsal or performance of a single scene, especially used as a means of developing or honing dramatic skills.
Mid 17th century; earliest use found in John Milton (1608–1674), poet and polemicist. From scene + work.
scene work/ˈsiːn wəːk/
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