eternal

adjective
eter·​nal | \ i-ˈtər-nᵊl How to pronounce eternal (audio) \

Definition of eternal

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : having infinite duration : everlasting eternal damnation
b : of or relating to eternity
c : characterized by abiding fellowship with God good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life? — Mark 10:17 (Revised Standard Version)
2a : continued without intermission : perpetual an eternal flame
b : seemingly endless eternal delays
3 archaic : infernal some eternal villain … devised this slander— William Shakespeare
4 : valid or existing at all times : timeless eternal verities

eternal

noun

Definition of eternal (Entry 2 of 2)

1 capitalized : god sense 1 used with the
2 : something eternal

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Other Words from eternal

Adjective

eternalize \ i-​ˈtər-​nə-​ˌlīz How to pronounce eternalize (audio) \ transitive verb
eternally \ i-​ˈtər-​nᵊl-​ē How to pronounce eternally (audio) \ adverb
eternalness noun

Examples of eternal in a Sentence

Adjective the eternal flames of hell in search of eternal wisdom When will his eternal whining stop?
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The state has been built on promises of an eternal present, on blithe and deliberate disregard for the past so as not to have to learn from it—on a refusal to give a single naked whit about the future. Lauren Groff, The Atlantic, "The Dark Soul of the Sunshine State," 21 June 2020 For example, products like fish swim bladder – also known as aquatic cocaine – and cosmetics containing shark liver oil appeal to perceptions of female beauty, targeting aging women with false promises of eternal youth. Candace Famiglietti, The Conversation, "Python skin jackets and elephant leather boots: How wealthy Western nations help drive the global wildlife trade," 19 June 2020 The eternal struggle to find harmony and balance between men and women seems to lie at the heart of most Amazon tales. National Geographic, "The fierce Amazons were more than just a myth—they were real," 18 June 2020 The police-and-National-Guard caravan passed me several times, along with several solo police vehicles, their emergency lights set to a slow eternal twirl. J.c. Hallman, The New Republic, "Minneapolis in the Aftermath," 4 June 2020 Sheetala carries a pot of healing water, a broom to sweep away dirt, a branch of the indigenous Neem tree – said to cure skin and breathing disorders – and a jar of ambrosia for eternal life. Tulasi Srinivas, The Conversation, "India’s goddesses of contagion provide protection in the pandemic – just don’t make them angry," 15 June 2020 As Zach Veach circles the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in his Gainbridge Honda, just minutes away from pursuit of eternal glory, his mind drifts. Nathan Brown, The Indianapolis Star, "Why fans are vital to the Indy 500: 'A 500 without fans is a 500 I don't wanna race'," 13 June 2020 But then Arab leaders like Mansour Abbas and Ahmad Tibi could never have imagined publicly sharing Jewish grief on Holocaust Memorial Day, much less pledging eternal solidarity with the Jewish people. Omri Boehm, The New York Review of Books, "After Liberal Zionism, the One Hope for a Democratic Israel," 9 June 2020 The attorney general laid out the basic conflict at the center of Augustine’s great work, pitting the Christian city of God, where each person could enjoy a transcendental eternal life, with the fallible, flesh-and-blood city of man. Matt Ford, The New Republic, "Bill Barr’s Invisible Crusade," 8 June 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Still, hope springs eternal, especially with the wildness of small sample sizes. Ryan Ford, Detroit Free Press, "How the Detroit Tigers can make MLB playoffs in a 50-game season," 16 June 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'eternal.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of eternal

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun

1573, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for eternal

Adjective

Middle English, from Middle French, from Late Latin aeternalis, from Latin aeternus eternal, from aevum age, eternity — more at aye

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Time Traveler for eternal

Time Traveler

The first known use of eternal was in the 14th century

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Statistics for eternal

Last Updated

1 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Eternal.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/eternal. Accessed 6 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for eternal

eternal

adjective
How to pronounce eternal (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of eternal

: having no beginning and no end in time : lasting forever
: existing at all times : always true or valid
: seeming to last forever

eternal

adjective
eter·​nal | \ i-ˈtər-nᵊl How to pronounce eternal (audio) \

Kids Definition of eternal

1 : lasting forever : having no beginning and no end
2 : continuing without interruption : seeming to last forever eternal patience

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More from Merriam-Webster on eternal

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for eternal

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with eternal

Spanish Central: Translation of eternal

Nglish: Translation of eternal for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of eternal for Arabic Speakers

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