persevere, persist are both used in reference to persons in the sense of to continue in a given course in the face of difficulty or opposition.
Persevere nearly always implies an admirable quality; it suggests both refusal to be discouraged by failure, doubts, or difficulties, and a steadfast or dogged pursuit of an end or an undertaking

I will persevere in my course of loyalty, though the conflict be sore between that and my blood— Shak.


for, strength to persevere and to support, and energy to conquer and repel — these elements of virtue, that declare the native grandeur of the human soul— Wordsworth


I do not intend to take that cowardly course, but, on the contrary, to stand to my post and persevere in accordance with my duty—Sir Winston Churchill

Persist (see also CONTINUE)may imply a virtue

this is the poetry within history, this is what causes mankind to persist beyond every defeat— J. S. Untermeyer

but it more often suggests a disagreeable or annoying quality, for it stresses stubbornness or obstinacy more than courage or patience and frequently implies opposition to advice, remonstrance, disapproval, or one's own conscience

persist in working when ill


it is hard to see how they can have persisted so long in inflicting useless misery— Russell

Analogous words: *continue, abide, endure, last
Contrasted words: vary, *change, alter: waver, vacillate, falter, *hesitate

New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Persevere — Per se*vere , v. i. [imp. & p. p. {Persevered}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Persevering}.] [F. pers[ e]v[ e]rer, L. perseverare, fr. perseverus very strict; per + severus strict, severe. See {Per }, and {Severe}.] To persist in any business or enterprise… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • persevere — I verb adhere, apply oneself, be constant, be determined, be obstinate, be resolute, be steadfast, be steady, be stubborn, be tenacious, be unyielding, carry on, cling, cling tenaciously, constare, continue, endure, exert oneself, follow up, go… …   Law dictionary

  • persevere at — index ply Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • persevere in — index prosecute (carry forward) Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • persevere — mid 14c., from O.Fr. perseverer, from L. perseverare continue steadfastly, persist, from persevereus very strict, earnest, from per very + severus strict (see SEVERITY (Cf. severity)) …   Etymology dictionary

  • persevere — [v] keep at; work hard be determined, be resolved, be stubborn, carry on, continue, endure, go for broke*, go for it*, go on, hang in*, hang tough*, hold fast*, hold on, keep driving*, keep going, keep on, leave no stone unturned*, maintain,… …   New thesaurus

  • persevere — ► VERB ▪ continue in a course of action in spite of difficulty or lack of success. DERIVATIVES perseverance noun. ORIGIN Latin perseverare abide by strictly …   English terms dictionary

  • persevere — [pʉr΄sə vir′] vi. persevered, persevering [ME perseveren < OFr perseverer < L perseverare < perseverus, very severe, strict < per , intens. + severus,SEVERE] to continue in some effort, course of action, etc. in spite of difficulty,… …   English World dictionary

  • Persevere — Infobox Album Name = Persevere Type = studio Artist = The Proclaimers Released = May 22, 2001 Recorded = 2000–2001 Genre = Pop, rock Length = Label = Nettwerk Producer = The Proclaimers Reviews = * Rolling Stone (Not Rated)… …   Wikipedia

  • persevere — UK [ˌpɜː(r)sɪˈvɪə(r)] / US [ˌpɜsəˈvɪr] verb [intransitive] Word forms persevere : present tense I/you/we/they persevere he/she/it perseveres present participle persevering past tense persevered past participle persevered to continue trying to… …   English dictionary

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