in·​ces·​sant (ˌ)in-ˈse-sᵊnt How to pronounce incessant (audio)
: continuing or following without interruption : unceasing
Choose the Right Synonym for incessant

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

Example Sentences

Much of the early motor development of the child depends on learning and refining such procedures, through play, imitation, trial and error, and incessant rehearsal. Oliver Sacks, New Yorker, 24 Sept. 2007 Magna Carta also stipulated that the shire courts should meet as royal courts under the itinerant justices more often than twice a year—a change, convenient to the landed classes and their incessant civil actions, that was not implemented because of the cost to the Crown. Norman F. Cantor, Imagining the Law, 1997 Whatever Stalin's ancestry, his biographers, Robert Tucker in particular, have concluded that his unfortunate childhood experiences, including incessant, murderous beatings by his drunken father, were probably what caused his pathological behaviour. Amy Knight, Times Literary Supplement, 26 Apr. 1991 the incessant noise from an outside repair crew was a real distraction during the test
Recent Examples on the Web Look no further than the fame-hungry Kardashians who inspire ire for their incessant social media posting. David Oliver, USA TODAY, 29 Oct. 2021 This year’s fire season started in July due to cool weather and incessant rains going into June and is burning in mid-October. oregonlive, 17 Oct. 2022 Haidai said battles continue around the cities of Rubizhne and Popasna, where residents are hiding from incessant shelling in basements. Washington Post, 26 Apr. 2022 Cities such as Odessa and Mariupol, where about 70% of Ukraine's exports are moved from, have now been blocked due to incessant Russian shelling, according to USAID. Byjulia Jacobo, ABC News, 21 Apr. 2022 Especially in Los Angeles, a city known for its incessant need to stay ahead of the curve. Dave Schilling, Los Angeles Times, 18 May 2022 Concerns about asbestos made the towers’ ventilation system unusable, and residents complained about mold and incessant leaks during rainstorms. Kyle Chayka, The New Yorker, 28 Apr. 2022 The latest details about the insurrection emerged despite incessant efforts by Trump and those around him to obstruct the January 6 investigation. Stephen Collinson, CNN, 10 Feb. 2022 Up until then, as in every other waking minute, my mind had been full of incessant and interrupting concerns. Jonathan Beverly, Outside Online, 13 Mar. 2020 See More

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

Word History


Middle English incessaunt, from Late Latin incessant-, incessans, from Latin in- + cessant-, cessans, present participle of cessare to delay — more at cease

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of incessant was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near incessant

Cite this Entry

“Incessant.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition



in·​ces·​sant (ˈ)in-ˈses-ᵊnt How to pronounce incessant (audio)
: going on and on : not stopping or letting up
incessantly adverb

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