per·​se·​ver·​ance ˌpər-sə-ˈvir-ən(t)s How to pronounce perseverance (audio)
: continued effort to do or achieve something despite difficulties, failure, or opposition : the action or condition or an instance of persevering : steadfastness

Examples of perseverance in a Sentence

The great international collectors and curators, once celebrated for their perceptiveness and perseverance, are now regularly deplored as traffickers in, or receivers of, stolen goods. Kwame Anthony Appiah, New York Review of Books, 9 Feb. 2006
… a cavalcade of black and brown and female faces spinning stories of hardship and triumph through perseverance. Michelle Cottle, New Republic, 14 Aug. 2000
… he had no-nonsense coaches with hearts of gold who taught him discipline; he learned perseverance from a father who sent him back out to fight after he took a licking … Jack McCallum, Sports Illustrated, 14 Dec. 1998
His perseverance was rewarded: after many rejections, he finally found a job. Perseverance is required to perfect just about any skill.
Recent Examples on the Web Bendis said the family’s success was built on his mother’s perseverance, entrepreneurial roots and sense of curiosity that has fueled the family business into a modern age. Sofia Celeste, WWD, 11 July 2024 Their legacy reminds me that perseverance, faith, unity and commitment to each other can overcome any challenge. Shawn Raymundo, The Arizona Republic, 9 July 2024 Strength, freedom, liberty, perseverance, equality, all of these things have been within our flag over time. Rachel Barber, The Courier-Journal, 3 July 2024 The award is given annually to the NHL player who best exemplifies perseverance, sportsmanship, and dedication to hockey. Curtis Pashelka, The Mercury News, 30 June 2024 See all Example Sentences for perseverance 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'perseverance.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English perseveraunce, borrowed from Anglo-French parseverance, parsevrance, borrowed from Latin persevērantia, noun derivative of persevērant-, persevērans "persisting in a course of action, steadfast," from present participle of persevērāre "to persist in a course of action or an attitude in spite of opposition, keep on" — more at persevere

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of perseverance was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near perseverance

Cite this Entry

“Perseverance.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition


per·​se·​ver·​ance ˌpər-sə-ˈvir-ən(t)s How to pronounce perseverance (audio)
: the action, state, or an instance of persevering
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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