sem·​pi·​ter·​nal | \ ˌsem-pi-ˈtər-nᵊl How to pronounce sempiternal (audio) \

Definition of sempiternal

: of never-ending duration : eternal

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Other Words from sempiternal

sempiternally adverb

Did You Know?

Despite their similarities, sempiternal and eternal come from different roots. Sempiternal is derived from the Late Latin sempiternalis and ultimately from semper, Latin for always. (You may recognize semper as a key element in the motto of the U.S. Marine Corps: semper fidelis, meaning "always faithful.") Eternal, on the other hand, is derived by way of Middle French and Middle English from the Late Latin aeternalis and ultimately from aevum, Latin for age or "eternity." Sempiternal is much less common than eternal, but some writers have found it useful. Ralph Waldo Emerson, for example, wrote, "The one thing which we seek with insatiable desire is to forget ourselves, … to lose our sempiternal memory, and to do something without knowing how or why…."

First Known Use of sempiternal

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for sempiternal

Middle English, from Late Latin sempiternalis, from Latin sempiternus, from semper ever, always, from sem- one, same (akin to Old Norse samr same) + per through — more at same, for

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Time Traveler for sempiternal

The first known use of sempiternal was in the 15th century

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More from Merriam-Webster on sempiternal

Nglish: Translation of sempiternal for Spanish Speakers

Comments on sempiternal

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


a usually brief trip or an expedition

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