intr.v. ex·ist·ed, ex·ist·ing, ex·ists
1. To have actual being; be real.
2. To have life; live: one of the worst actors that ever existed.
3. To live at a minimal level; subsist: barely enough income on which to exist.
4. To continue to be; persist: old customs that still exist in rural areas.
5. To be present under certain circumstances or in a specified place; occur: "Wealth and poverty exist in every demographic category" (Thomas G. Exter).
[Latin existere, exsistere, to come forth, be manifest : ex-, ex- + sistere, to stand; see stā- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.