Definition of perpetual adjective from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//pəˈpetʃuəl//
    ; NAmE NAmE//pərˈpetʃuəl//
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  1. 1[usually before noun] continuing for a long period of time without interruption synonym continuous the perpetual noise of traffic We lived for years in a perpetual state of fear. (literary) mountain peaks covered with perpetual snows and ice
  2. 2[usually before noun] frequently repeated, in a way that is annoying synonym continual How can I work with these perpetual interruptions?
  3. 3[only before noun] (of a job or position) lasting for the whole of somebody’s life He was elected perpetual president. (humorous) She's a perpetual student.
  4. Word OriginMiddle English: from Old French perpetuel, from Latin perpetualis, from perpetuus ‘continuing throughout’, from perpes, perpet- ‘continuous’.Extra examples Government and parliament are in a state of perpetual conflict. His life is a perpetual holiday. His travel schedule keeps him in perpetual motion. Lack of time is a perpetual problem for nurses on the ward. People found her perpetual coarse jokes irritating. The country seems to be in a perpetual state of chaos. The harshest punishment was perpetual exile. The perpetual interruptions made conversation difficult. They exist in a state of perpetual fear.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: perpetual

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