Open main menu

Wiktionary β



Alternative formsEdit


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


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


continual (not comparable)

  1. Recurring in steady, rapid succession.
  2. (proscribed) Seemingly continuous; appearing to have no end or interruption.
  3. (proscribed) Forming a continuous series.

Usage notesEdit

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 termsEdit


The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.


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

Further readingEdit