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[per-sis-tuh ns, -zis-] /pərˈsɪs təns, -ˈzɪs-/
the act or fact of persisting.
the quality of being persistent:
You have persistence, I'll say that for you.
continued existence or occurrence:
the persistence of smallpox.
the continuance of an effect after its cause is removed.
Often, persistency.
Origin of persistence
First recorded in 1540-50; persist + -ence
Related forms
nonpersistence, noun
nonpersistency, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for persistence
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • In this persistence he displayed courage worthy of a better reward.

    The Spenders Harry Leon Wilson
  • Presently, however, the sincerity and persistence of the girl won him over.

    Within the Law Marvin Dana
  • This persistence in a phylloxera-ravaged district is quite touching.

    The Roof of France Matilda Betham-Edwards
  • Ingres' persistence looked like folly, even madness in his eyes.

    In the Heart of Vosges Matilda Betham-Edwards
  • Mr. Gordon believed that to shrewdness and persistence all things are possible.

British Dictionary definitions for persistence


the quality of persisting; tenacity
the act of persisting; continued effort or existence
the continuance of an effect after the cause of it has stopped: persistence of vision
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for persistence

1540s, from Middle French persistance, from persistant "lasting, enduring, permanent," from Latin persistentem (nominative persistens), present participle of persistere (see persist). Often spelled persistance 16c. Related: Persistency.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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persistence in Medicine

persistence per·sist·ence (pər-sĭs'təns, -zĭs'-)

  1. Continuance of an effect after the cause is removed.

  2. Continuance of a part or an organ, rather than having it disappear in an early stage of development.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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