per·​se·​ver·​ance | \ ˌpər-sə-ˈvir-ən(t)s How to pronounce perseverance (audio) \

Definition of perseverance

: 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 Kentucky Derby winner Rich Strike and the horse's trainer clearly know the meaning of perseverance. Eileen Finan,, 11 May 2022 In three seasons with the Eagles, Johnson grew from being a nice story of perseverance to the fifth offensive lineman selected Thursday. Jeff Miller, Los Angeles Times, 29 Apr. 2022 Zheng’s transporting story of perseverance in the face of shocking injustice resonates across cultures, and also feels sadly relevant to today’s world. Washington Post, 29 Mar. 2022 When a success story involves a person with a disability, it is often framed as an act of overcoming, an inspiring tale of perseverance in the face of unimaginable tragedy: losing a sense or gaining an impediment. Isabella Cueto, STAT, 28 Mar. 2022 Privilege — financial, educational, geographical, language — plays a huge role in people's experiences with these diseases, which require a huge amount of perseverance. Jessica Dulong, CNN, 22 Mar. 2022 This Japanese proverb speaks volumes about the importance of perseverance. Expert Panel®, Forbes, 1 Nov. 2021 Trinklein’s approach is patience and perseverance to build permaculture. Kristine M. Kierzek, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 5 May 2022 In terms of getting that commission, perseverance is key. Annie Ridout, Forbes, 29 June 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of perseverance

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for perseverance

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

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

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Last Updated

19 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Perseverance.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for perseverance


per·​se·​ver·​ance | \ ˌpər-sə-ˈvir-əns How to pronounce perseverance (audio) \

Kids Definition of perseverance

: the act or power of continuing to do something in spite of difficulties


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