[ 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.

Nearby words

  1. persiennes,
  2. persiflage,
  3. persimmon,
  4. persis,
  5. persist,
  6. persistence of memory, the,
  7. persistence of vision,
  8. persistent,
  9. persistent anterior hyperplastic primary vitreous body,
  10. persistent chronic hepatitis

Often per·sist·en·cy.

Origin of persistence

First recorded in 1540–50; persist + -ence

Related formsnon·per·sist·ence, nounnon·per·sist·en·cy, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for persistence

British Dictionary definitions for persistence



/ (pəˈsɪstəns) /


the quality of persisting; tenacity
the act of persisting; continued effort or existence
the continuance of an effect after the cause of it has stoppedpersistence 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

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

Medicine definitions for persistence


[ pər-sĭstəns ]


Continuance of an effect after the cause is removed.
Continuance of a part or 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.