pa·​tience | \ ˈpā-shən(t)s How to pronounce patience (audio) \

Definition of patience

1 : the capacity, habit, or fact of being patient
2 chiefly British : solitaire sense 2

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Synonyms & Antonyms for patience



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Examples of patience in a Sentence

To be a biographer is a somewhat peculiar endeavor. It seems to me it requires not only the tact, patience, and thoroughness of a scholar but also the stamina of a horse. — Nancy Milford, Vanity Fair, August 2001 … in this time of bioethical conundrums, it is good to know that patience, good will, and personal morality will untie far more intellectual knots than the disarray of rancor, conflict, and special interests … — Sherwin B. Nuland, New Republic, 13 Dec. 1999 Mind-numbing delays and irrelevant search results are enough to try the patience of the most saintly Web surfers. — Neil Gross et al., Business Week, 14 June 1999 After a while, their ideological certitudes tried the patience of their own peoples … — Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr., New Yorker, 16 Nov. 1992 I don't have the patience to wait in line for hours just to buy a ticket. Investors need to have patience. The economy will improve soon. She treated her students with great patience and humor. I don't have the patience to do crossword puzzles.
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Recent Examples on the Web Kane also thanked families for their patience with relatively minor transportation issues. cleveland, "Hints of normalcy emerge as Independence School District begins fall term," 16 Sep. 2020 Even more so than most flooring projects, patience is critical when refinishing hardwood. Sarah Baird, Good Housekeeping, "Refinishing," 14 Sep. 2020 Even more so than most flooring projects, patience is critical when refinishing hardwood. Sarah Baird, House Beautiful, "Refinishing," 14 Sep. 2020 Just how much patience is Nagy willing to have with Trubisky and his offense in the early part of the season? Brad Biggs,, "Mitch Trubisky has retained his role as the Bears’ starting quarterback. But how much patience will Matt Nagy have? And where does the team go from here?," 5 Sep. 2020 That patience is one of the seven heavenly virtues. Star Tribune, "Readers Write: 'Minnesota Nice,' Minnesota Poll on support for policing changes, electric vehicles," 21 Aug. 2020 The millions of Venezuelans who have fled the country are trying the patience of their hosts in neighboring nations. Washington Post, "Trump administration to tap into frozen Venezuelan government funds to revive efforts to oust Maduro," 20 Aug. 2020 Mainly just understand that road trips are long days, and people cope with that differently, so patience is key. Olivia Harrison,, "Real People Share Their Mid-Pandemic Road Trip Experiences," 30 July 2020 That’s a helpful attitude, since patience and flexibility will be necessary for quite a while. Christie Aschwanden, Wired, "Women’s Roller Derby Has a Plan for Covid, and It Kicks Ass," 2 July 2020

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for patience

see patient entry 1

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Time Traveler for patience

Time Traveler

The first known use of patience was in the 13th century

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Statistics for patience

Last Updated

26 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Patience.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for patience


How to pronounce patience (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of patience

: the ability to wait for a long time without becoming annoyed or upset
: the ability to remain calm and not become annoyed when dealing with problems or with difficult people
: the ability to give attention to something for a long time without becoming bored or losing interest


pa·​tience | \ ˈpā-shəns How to pronounce patience (audio) \

Kids Definition of patience

: the ability to remain calm when dealing with a difficult or annoying situation, task, or person A person will need patience to do this work.

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