The Meaning of Perseverance: What It Is and How To Use It

Do you know the definition of perseverance? This article will provide you with all of the information you need on the word perseverance, including its definition, usage, word origin, example sentences, and more!

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What does the word perseverance mean?

According to the Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language and others like Collins English Dictionary and American Heritage, the word perseverance is a noun that refers to the effort to do or achieve something despite difficulty or failure. Perseverance is four syllables, per-se-ver-ance, and the pronunciation of perseverance is ˌpər-sə-ˈvir-ən(t)s.

Many different languages also contain words that mean perseverance. You may find that some of these words look and sound similar to each other. This is likely because they are of a similar origin. Usually, cognates are formed when two words have a common ancestor such as Latin or Greek. Cognates are words that look, sound, and mean something similar across languages. This list of translations of perseverance is provided by Word Sense.

  •  Czech: vytrvalost‎ (fem.), úpornost‎ (fem.)
  •  French: persévérance‎ (fem.)
  •  Telugu: పట్టుదల‎ (paTTudala)
  •  Russian: упо́рство‎ (neut.), насто́йчивость‎ (fem.)
  •  Japanese: 忍耐‎ (にんたい, nintai)
  •  Turkish: azim‎, tahammül‎, sabır‎
  •  Spanish: perseverancia‎ (fem.)
  •  Finnish: hellittämättömyys‎, itsepintaisuus‎, peräänantamattomuus‎, määrätietoisuus‎
  •  Serbo-Croatian: upornost‎
  •  Icelandic: þrautseigja‎ (fem.), þolgæði‎ (neut.), harðfylgi‎ (neut.)
  •  Romanian: perseverență‎ (fem.), stăruință‎ (fem.)
  •  Arabic: مُثَابَرَة‎ (fem.)
  •  Khmer: ស្មារតីលះបង់‎ (smaardəy leah bɑng)
  •  Korean: 끈기‎ (끈氣, kkeungi), 인내‎
  •  Mandarin: 恆心‎, 恒心‎ (héngxīn), 毅力‎ (yìlì)
  •  Swedish: ihärdighet‎ (common)
  •  Irish: buanseasmhacht‎ (fem.), buanseasamh‎ (masc.)
  •  Bokmål: utholdenhet‎ (masc.) (fem.)
  •  Galician: perseveranza‎ (fem.)
  •  Portuguese: perseverança‎ (fem.)
  •  German: Beharrlichkeit‎ (fem.), Ausdauer‎ (fem.)
  •  Maori: hiringa‎
  •  Hungarian: állhatatosság‎, kitartás‎
  •  Catalan: perseverança‎ (fem.)
  •  Dutch: volharding‎ (fem.), vasthoudendheid‎ (fem.)
  •  Italian: perseveranza‎ (fem.)

What are synonyms and antonyms of perseverance?

There are many different words that are synonyms for the word perseverance. Synonyms are words and phrases that have the same or a similar definition as another word or phrase. Synonyms are a useful English language tool because they can help you to avoid repeating the same word over and over again while simultaneously expanding your vocabulary. This list of synonyms for the word perseverance is provided by Thesaurus

  • determination
  •  constancy
  •  prolonging
  •  resolution
  •  immovability
  •  hard work
  •  backbone
  •  spunk
  •  diligence
  •  steadfastness
  •  stamina
  •  pluck
  •  doggedness
  •  pursuance
  •  drive
  •  persistence
  •  purposefulness
  •  dedication
  •  grit
  •  guts
  •  sedulity
  •  continuance
  •  indefatigability
  •  pertinacity
  •  endurance
  •  cool
  •  moxie
  •  stick-to-itiveness
  •  tenacity

There are also a number of words that mean the opposite of the word perseverance. These opposite words are known as antonyms, which are words and phrases that have the opposite definitions as another word or phrase. Antonyms are also a useful tool to expand a person’s vocabulary. This list of antonyms for the word perseverance is also provided by Thesaurus

  •  aloofness
  •  disregard
  •  coldness
  •  apathy
  •  disinterest
  •  emotionlessness
  •  listlessness
  •  insensitivity
  •  coolness
  •  lethargy
  •  unresponsiveness
  •  detachment
  •  insouciance
  •  insensibility
  •  unconcern
  •  passiveness
  •  halfheartedness
  •  indifference
  •  dispassion
  •  stoicism
  •  heedlessness
  •  lassitude
  •  passivity
  •  dullness

What is the origin of the word perseverance?

According to Etymonline, the word perseverance has been used since the mid-14c, as the Middle English perseveraunce. This comes from the Old French perseverance, a 12c word that is now the Modern French persévérance. This comes from the Latin perseverantia, from the root perseverant, the past participle stem of perseverare, a Latin verb meaning to continue steadfastly. This word has been used since 14c to mean continuing or enduring. Related words include the word persevere, the adjective persistent, and the adverb persistently. Many words that start with the prefix per may be related to the words perseverance and other such related words. Keep a look out for words like this in your daily life.

How can the word perseverance be used in a sentence?

The word perseverance can be used in many different sentences in the English language. Using words in a sentence is a great way to memorize their definition. You can also try to make flashcards or quizzes for yourself to test your knowledge of definitions. Learning new words is a great way to make yourself sound smarter and to improve your vocabulary. Try using this word of the day in a sentence today. Below are several examples of perseverance.

Despite being rejected by the New York Times and the Washington Post, June had perseverance. She was determined to be the most famous journalist on Earth, even in a man’s world. 

The perseverance of the band was admirable even after the terrible write-up on their first album. They continued to make music and the band had great longevity. Fans of all types of music listened to them all the time. 

While he was rejected from Princeton University for his undergraduate degree, he was determined to become a Princeton Tiger someday. There was an insistence to his goals, and a final perseverance that landed him in Princeton’s PhD program in English Literature.

The kids showed great perseverance when they were trying to build their project on the Earth system. It kept breaking apart, but they glued it back together every time and their teacher viewed them in a favorable sense.

Overall, the word perseverance means a state of persistent determination and continuing on a course of action in spite of difficulties. This behavior has a state of grace and resiliency, as well as a steady persistence and optimism despite discouragement. This steady belief shows a willingness to continue self-reliance despite setbacks and a dominance over obstacles or adversity. This is also a Calvinistic doctrine in theology, in the pursuit of a sin-free life that they believe leads someone to eternal salvation and a state of glory.


  1. perseverance: meaning, origin, translation | Word Sense 
  2. PERSEVERANCE Synonyms: 36 Synonyms & Antonyms for PERSEVERANCE | Thesaurus  
  3. APATHY Synonyms: 31 Synonyms & Antonyms for APATHY | Thesaurus 
  4. perseverance | Origin and meaning of perseverance | Online Etymology Dictionary 
  5. Perseverance | Definition of Perseverance | Merriam-Webster