Definitions

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

  • adj. Lasting or remaining without essential change: "the universal human yearning for something permanent, enduring, without shadow of change” ( Willa Cather).
  • adj. Not expected to change in status, condition, or place: a permanent address; permanent secretary to the president.
  • n. Any of several long-lasting hair styles usually achieved by chemical applications which straighten, curl, or wave the hair.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Without end, eternal.
  • adj. Lasting for an indefinitely long time.
  • n. A chemical hair treatment imparting or removing curliness, whose effects typically last for a period of weeks; a perm.
  • n. Given an matrix , the sum over all permutations of .

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Continuing in the same state, or without any change that destroys form or character; remaining unaltered or unremoved; abiding; durable; fixed; stable; lasting.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Lasting or intended to last indefinitely; fixed or enduring in character, condition, state, position, occupation, use, or the like; remaining or intended to remain unchanged or unremoved; not temporary or subject to change; abiding: as, a permanent building; permanent colors; permanent employment; permanent possession.
  • In zoology, always present in a species or group.
  • n. In the plural, a general name for light cotton cloth, sometimes glazed and generally dyed in bright colors.

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

  • adj. continuing or enduring without marked change in status or condition or place
  • adj. not capable of being reversed or returned to the original condition
  • n. a series of waves in the hair made by applying heat and chemicals

Etymologies

Middle English, from Old French, from Latin permanēns, permanent-, present participle of permanēre, to endure : per-, throughout; see per- + manēre, to remain; see men-3 in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Used in English since 15th century, from Middle French permanent, from Latin permanens, from permanēo ("I stay to the end"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

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