per·​se·​vere | \ ˌpər-sə-ˈvir How to pronounce persevere (audio) \
persevered; persevering

Definition of persevere

intransitive verb

: to persist in a state, enterprise, or undertaking in spite of counterinfluences, opposition, or discouragement

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Other Words from persevere

perseveringly \ ˌpər-​sə-​ˈvir-​iŋ-​lē How to pronounce perseveringly (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms for persevere


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Did You Know?

The early settlers of the New World persevered in the face of constant hardship and danger. The Pilgrims of Plymouth Plantation lost half their number in the first winter to disease and hunger, but their perseverance paid off, and within five years their community was healthy and self-sufficient. Perhaps more remarkable are all the solitary inventors who have persevered in pursuing their visions for years, lacking any financial support and laughed at by the public.

Examples of persevere in a Sentence

She persevered in her studies and graduated near the top of her class. Even though he was tired, he persevered and finished the race.
Recent Examples on the Web But Grundy persevered through tumultuous times and excelled on the basketball court, earning looks from major colleges before settling on NC State, said Colovos, now the pastor at First Baptist Church in Portland, Tennessee. Billy Kobin, The Courier-Journal, "Louisville native and ex-NBA player Anthony Grundy dies in stabbing, police say," 15 Nov. 2019 Until their transfer ban is lifted, the Blues will persevere with both Alonso and Emerson, while 17-year-old Ian Maatsen could be involved in cup competitions this season after making his debut in the Carabao Cup victory over Grimsby Town., "Chelsea to Pursue New Left-Back With Marcos Alonso & Emerson Not in Long-Term Plans," 21 Oct. 2019 Yet despite widespread condemnation, candy corn has persevered for well over a century. Meghan Overdeep, Southern Living, "Candy Corn Used to Have an Even Less Appetizing Name," 17 Oct. 2019 All the while, LeBron’s late-in-life weirdness persevered. Bruce Jenkins,, "Warriors vs. Lakers: There’s hope for a rivalry yet," 15 Oct. 2019 But the Lions persevered thanks to Ostendorf’s good timing. Pat Stoetzer,, "Boys Soccer: Ostendorf lifts Liberty to 2OT win over rival South Carroll," 18 Sep. 2019 But the businesses, residents, and institutions continue to persevere, working together to rebuild. Meghan Overdeep, Southern Living, "Panama City Hosting Survivors Concert 1 Year After Hurricane Michael," 11 Oct. 2019 The Cretin-Derham Hall graduate has persevered through more than a dozen surgeries and has spent more than 200 nights in the hospital. Andy Greder, Twin Cities, "Gophers’ cancer survivor featured on ESPN’s ‘College Gameday’," 27 Sep. 2019 The duo founded a nonprofit company, Fossil Excavators, to discover, persevere and educate others about fossils. Amanda Jackson, CNN, "College student unearths 65 million-year-old Triceratops skull," 24 July 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for persevere

Middle English, from Anglo-French parseverer, from Latin perseverare, from per- through + severus severe

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Time Traveler for persevere

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for persevere

Last Updated

5 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Persevere.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 11 December 2019.

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More Definitions for persevere


How to pronounce persevere (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of persevere

: to continue doing something or trying to do something even though it is difficult


per·​se·​vere | \ ˌpər-sə-ˈvir How to pronounce persevere (audio) \
persevered; persevering

Kids Definition of persevere

: to keep trying to do something in spite of difficulties She persevered in learning to speak French.

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Comments on persevere

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


heavy with or as if with moisture

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