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See also: continuous


Alternative forms[edit]


From Middle English continuel, from Old French continuel, formed from Latin continuus (continuous) with the suffix -el.


  • IPA(key): /kənˈtɪnjuəl/, /kənˈtɪnjəl/
  • (file)
  • Hyphenation: con‧tin‧u‧al, con‧tin‧ual


continual (not comparable)

  1. Recurring in steady, rapid succession.
    • 2022 January 12, Paul Bigland, “Fab Four: the nation's finest stations: Wakefield Kirkgate”, in RAIL, number 948, page 28:
      The history of this station is one of continual rebuilding.
  2. (proscribed) Seemingly continuous; appearing to have no end or interruption.
  3. (proscribed) Forming a continuous series.

Usage notes[edit]

In careful usage, continual refers to repeated actions “continual objections”, while continuous refers to uninterrupted actions or objects “continuous flow”, “played music continuously from dusk to dawn”.[1] However, this distinction is not observed in informal usage, a noted example being the magic spell name “continual light” (unbroken light), in the game Dungeons & Dragons.

Related terms[edit]


The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.


  1. ^ Paul Brians (2009), “continual”, in Common Errors in English Usage, 2nd edition, Wilsonville, Or.: William, James & Company, →ISBN.

Further reading[edit]