in·​sist | \in-ˈsist \
insisted; insisting; insists

Definition of insist 

intransitive verb

1 : to be emphatic, firm, or resolute about something intended, demanded, or required they insist on going

2 archaic : persist

transitive verb

: to maintain in a persistent or positive manner insisted that the story was true

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Examples of insist in a Sentence

I didn't want to go, but she insisted. “Come on, let's go.” “Oh, all right, if you insist.” She insists the money is hers.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The European Commission insists that the single market’s freedoms are indivisible. The Economist, "The EU digests Britain’s new Brexit plan," 11 July 2018 The morning of the shooting, the Hixons’ younger son, Cory, 22, had insisted his parents exchange Valentine’s Day gifts before school. Anne Geggis,, "Family of slain Stoneman Douglas athletic director starts scholarship in his memory," 9 July 2018 State environmental officials and some environmental groups insist their measurements are accurate, but the study highlights a little known aspect of the carbon emissions debate: the way the gases are counted. David Abel,, "Emissions measures could be too low," 7 July 2018 And Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., is insisting the Senate confirm the nominee this fall, a move analysts say could occur well before the Nov. 6 election. Ledyard King, USA TODAY, "Court vacancy adds to hot-button issues in Florida Senate race between Rick Scott and Bill Nelson," 2 July 2018 Trump however remains defiant, insisting that trade wars are good and easy to win. James Osborne, Houston Chronicle, "Exxon, Chevron CEOs warn Trump tariffs hurting oil sector," 26 June 2018 President Obama had insisted on the need to avoid civilian casualties. William Langewiesche, The Atlantic, "An Extraordinarily Expensive Way to Fight ISIS," 21 June 2018 Missner had insisted there was no market for that type of development. Steve Lord, Aurora Beacon-News, "Aurora approves new warehouse, road change," 18 June 2018 Unafraid of a deliberate tempo and insisting on ardent phrase-making from the strings, Alsop plumbed more deeply into the music’s meanings than one might reasonably have expected in an outdoor setting. Howard Reich,, "CSO at Ravinia review: Marin Alsop poetically launches Bernstein tribute," 13 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'insist.' 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 insist

1586, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for insist

Middle French or Latin; Middle French insister, from Latin insistere to stand upon, persist, from in- + sistere to take a stand; akin to Latin stare to stand — more at stand

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Statistics for insist

Last Updated

10 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for insist

The first known use of insist was in 1586

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More Definitions for insist



English Language Learners Definition of insist

: to demand that something happen or that someone do something

: to say (something) in a way that is very forceful and does not allow disagreement


in·​sist | \in-ˈsist \
insisted; insisting

Kids Definition of insist

1 : to make a demand I didn't want to go, but she insisted.

2 : to say (something) in a forceful way that doesn't allow for disagreement She insists the money is hers.

insist on also insist upon

: to express or show a belief in the importance of something He insists on doing it his way.

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Comments on insist

What made you want to look up insist? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


something that serves to warn or remind

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