9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[ig-zist] /ɪgˈzɪst/
verb (used without object)
to have actual being; be:
The world exists, whether you like it or not.
to have life or animation; live.
to continue to be or live:
Belief in magic still exists.
to have being in a specified place or under certain conditions; be found; occur:
Hunger exists in many parts of the world.
to achieve the basic needs of existence, as food and shelter:
He's not living, he's merely existing.
Origin of exist
1595-1605; < Latin ex(s)istere to exist, appear, emerge, equivalent to ex- ex-1 + sistere to stand
Related forms
exister, noun
nonexisting, adjective
unexisting, adjective
3. survive, persist, last, endure, stay, remain. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for exists
  • The new finding adds to a growing body of evidence that dark matter exists.
  • Most of the gold left to mine exists as traces buried in remote and fragile corners of the globe.
  • Have students list the regions within which the local community exists.
  • When an organism exists naturally in a given ecosystem, it is considered a native species.
  • The results revealed that bubble rafters descended from a bottom-dwelling snail called the wentletrap, which still exists today.
  • Subsistence farming often exists side by side with commercial agriculture.
  • Above this depth, sufficient light exists to make it difficult for animals to conceal themselves.
  • Evidence of the practice also exists among modern human cultures.
  • It's a language not closely related to any other that still exists: to use the linguists' term, an isolate.
  • But the fact that authorities are even acknowledging that wastewater agriculture exists is progress, the report says.
British Dictionary definitions for exists


verb (intransitive)
to have being or reality; to be
to eke out a living; stay alive; survive: I can barely exist on this wage
to be living; live
to be present under specified conditions or in a specified place: sharks exist in the Pacific
  1. to be actual rather than merely possible
  2. to be a member of the domain of some theory, an element of some possible world, etc
  3. to have contingent being while free, responsible, and aware of one's situation
Derived Forms
existing, adjective
Word Origin
C17: from Latin exsistere to step forth, from ex-1 + sistere to stand
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for exists



c.1600, from French exister (17c.), from Latin existere/exsistere "to step out, stand forth, emerge, appear; exist, be" (see existence). "The late appearance of the word is remarkable" [OED]. Related: Existed; existing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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