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What does perseverance mean?

i have a summer reading assignment and I have to know what perseverance means, but I don't. Please help me 
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Persevere comes from the Latin words "per" and "assevero".  Per means" through (space) or during (time)".  Assevero means to "act earnestly, assert strongly, be serious, and emphatically declare".
When searching for word meanings, it helps to know the etymology.  Etymologies are not definitions.  They are word origins that help you understand the definition or connotation of a word. Use a combination of the definition and etymology to really understand a word.
Perseverance is the continued effort to do or achieve something despite difficulties, failure, or opposition : the action or condition or an instance of persevering
In other words: the quality that allows someone to continue trying to do something even though it is difficult