adjective \kən-ˈtin-yü-əl, -yəl\

: happening without interruption : not stopping or ending

: happening again and again within short periods of time

Full Definition of CONTINUAL

:  continuing indefinitely in time without interruption <continual fear>
:  recurring in steady usually rapid succession <a history of continual invasions>
con·tin·u·al·ly adverb

Examples of CONTINUAL

  1. This week we experienced days of continual sunshine.
  2. The country has been in a continual state of war since it began fighting for its independence.
  3. The continual interruptions by the student were annoying the teacher.


Middle English, from Anglo-French continuel, from Latin continuus continuous
First Known Use: 14th century

Synonym Discussion of CONTINUAL

continual, continuous, constant, incessant, perpetual, perennial mean characterized by continued occurrence or recurrence. continual often implies a close prolonged succession or recurrence <continual showers the whole weekend>. continuous usually implies an uninterrupted flow or spatial extension <football's oldest continuous rivalry>. constant implies uniform or persistent occurrence or recurrence <lived in constant pain>. incessant implies ceaseless or uninterrupted activity <annoyed by the incessant quarreling>. perpetual suggests unfailing repetition or lasting duration <a land of perpetual snowfall>. perennial implies enduring existence often through constant renewal <a perennial source of controversy>.


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