Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • intransitive v. To be firm in a demand or course; refuse to yield: insisted on giving me a second helping.
  • transitive v. To assert or demand (something) vehemently and persistently: We insist that you accept these gifts.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To hold up a claim emphatically.
  • v. To demand continually that something happen or be done.
  • v. To stand on; to rest upon; to lean upon. Used especially as a technical term in geometry.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • intransitive v. To stand or rest; to find support; -- with in, on, or upon.
  • intransitive v. To take a stand and refuse to give way; to hold to something firmly or determinedly; to be persistent, urgent, or pressing; to persist in demanding; -- followed by on, upon, or that

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To stand or rest; find support: with on or upon.
  • To rest, dwell, or dilate earnestly or repeatedly; urge: with on or upon: as, I must insist upon your coming.
  • To assert or argue emphatically; express a desire or a belief with urgency or persistence.
  • To be urgent in action; proceed persistently; persevere.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. be emphatic or resolute and refuse to budge
  • v. beg persistently and urgently
  • v. assert to be true

Etymologies

Latin īnsistere, to persist : in-, on; see in-2 + sistere, to stand; see stā- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

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