• synonyms


[ig-zis-tuh ns]
See more synonyms for existence on Thesaurus.com
  1. the state or fact of existing; being.
  2. continuance in being or life; life: a struggle for existence.
  3. mode of existing: They were working for a better existence.
  4. all that exists: Existence shows a universal order.
  5. something that exists; entity; being.
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Origin of existence

First recorded in 1350–1400; Middle English word from Late Latin word ex(s)istentia. See exist, -ence
Related formspost·ex·ist·ence, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for existence

continuation, survival, reality, world, presence, continuance, perseverance, individuality, being, subsistence, endurance, entity, breath, permanence, animation, essence, duration, actuality, journey, something

Examples from the Web for existence

Contemporary Examples of existence

Historical Examples of existence

  • Paralus breathes and moves, but is apparently unconscious of existence in this world.


    Lydia Maria Child

  • To Kate, for instance, she was a necessity of existence, like light or air.


    Thomas Wentworth Higginson

  • Its calmness gave the impression of a wisdom behind it that had no existence.

    Weighed and Wanting

    George MacDonald

  • Built on fear and run by fear, fear is as essential to their existence as coal to our industries.

  • My home life—if existence in a studio can be so called—was merry.

British Dictionary definitions for existence


  1. the fact or state of existing; being
  2. the continuance or maintenance of life; living, esp in adverse circumstancesa struggle for existence; she has a wretched existence
  3. something that exists; a being or entity
  4. everything that exists, esp that is living
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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

Word Origin and History for existence


late 14c., "reality," from Old French existence, from Medieval Latin existentia/exsistentia, from existentem/exsistentem (nominative existens/exsistens) "existent," present participle of Latin existere/exsistere "stand forth, appear," and, as a secondary meaning, "exist, be;" from ex- "forth" (see ex-) + sistere "cause to stand" (see assist).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper