per·​sis·​tence | \ pər-ˈsi-stən(t)s How to pronounce persistence (audio) , -ˈzi- \

Definition of persistence

1 : the action or fact of persisting
2 : the quality or state of being persistent especially : perseverance

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Examples of persistence in a Sentence

He admired her dogged persistence in pursuing the job. His persistence in asking for a raise was finally rewarded. She has shown a lot of persistence.
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Recent Examples on the Web Union organizing is typically an old-school art form of face-to-face engagement: one-on-one meetings and home visits, where organizers walk a delicate line between persistence and persuasion. Washington Post, "The latest frontier in worker activism: Zoom union campaigns," 10 Sep. 2020 This would be an ambitious ministry requiring dedication, imagination, persistence and interfaith coordination. John C. Danforth And Matt Malone, WSJ, "A First Step Toward Loving Our Enemies," 3 Sep. 2020 These steps aren’t easy, and can take some time and persistence. Jennifer Yellin, CNN Underscored, "The smart way to get a personal loan," 31 Aug. 2020 Some cajoling of the accelerator and persistence with the ignition and the twin cammer finally rattled up to a tenuous, high-speed idle. John Pearley Huffman, Car and Driver, "1971 Fiat 124: Just Like Mom Drove," 15 Aug. 2020 Afoh-Manin’s journey, like that of many Black women in America, has been a story of resistance and persistence. Chabeli Carrazana, USA TODAY, "When systemic racism meets the coronavirus, Black women suffer economically," 14 Aug. 2020 Responding to Steadman’s persistence, OSHA reopened its investigation. J. David Mcswane, ProPublica, "Foreign Masks, Fear and a Fake Certification: Staff at CSL Plasma Say Conditions at Donation Centers Aren’t Safe," 21 Sep. 2020 For many Black founders, experiences navigating race have built lifelong persistence. Erica B. Smith-goetz, Fortune, "Black founders have unique talents. We need to make sure they get to use them," 20 Sep. 2020 Vandal, 56, said Williams’s persistence in filling out the application tipped the scales in her favor. Washington Post, "She was homeless and living in a store’s parking lot. Then the store hired her.," 16 Sep. 2020

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

1546, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for persistence

Time Traveler

The first known use of persistence was in 1546

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Statistics for persistence

Last Updated

15 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Persistence.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for persistence


How to pronounce persistence (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of persistence

: the quality that allows someone to continue doing something or trying to do something even though it is difficult or opposed by other people
: the state of occurring or existing beyond the usual, expected, or normal time


per·​sist·​ence | \ pər-ˈsi-stəns How to pronounce persistence (audio) \

Kids Definition of persistence

1 : the act or fact of stubbornly continuing to do something
2 : the act or fact of continuing to exist longer than usual

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Comments on persistence

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