Definitions

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

  • intransitive v. To persist in or remain constant to a purpose, idea, or task in the face of obstacles or discouragement.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To persist steadfastly in pursuit of an undertaking, task, journey or mission in spite of distraction, difficulty, obstacles or discouragement.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • intransitive v. To persist in any business or enterprise undertaken; to pursue steadily any project or course begun; to maintain a purpose in spite of counter influences, opposition, or discouragement; not to give or abandon what is undertaken.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To persist in anything one has undertaken; pursue steadily and design or course commenced; avoid giving over or abandoning what is undertaken; be constant, steadfast, or unflinching.
  • Synonyms To keep on, hold on, stick to (one's work). See assiduity.
  • To continue; cause to abide or remain steadfast or unchanged.

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

  • v. be persistent, refuse to stop

Etymologies

Middle English perseveren, from Old French perseverer, from Latin persevērāre, from persevērus, very serious : per-, per- + sevērus, severe.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From French persévérer, from Latin perseverare ("to continue steadfastly, persist, persevere"), from perseverus ("very strict or earnest"), from per ("through") + severus ("strict, earnest"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

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