[ hohl-der ]
/ ˈhoʊl dər /


something that holds or secures: a pencil holder.
a person who has the ownership, possession, or use of something; owner; tenant.
Law. a person who has the legal right to enforce a negotiable instrument.

Nearby words

  1. hold-up,
  2. holdall,
  3. holdback,
  4. holddown,
  5. holden,
  6. holder in due course,
  7. holdfast,
  8. holding,
  9. holding company,
  10. holding furnace

Origin of holder

First recorded in 1300–50, holder is from the Middle English word haldere. See hold1, -er1

Related formshold·er·ship, nounpre·hold·er, noun

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for holder

British Dictionary definitions for holder


/ (ˈhəʊldə) /


a person or thing that holds
  1. a person, such as an owner, who has possession or control of something
  2. (in combination)householder
law a person who has possession of a bill of exchange, cheque, or promissory note that he is legally entitled to enforce
Derived Formsholdership, noun

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

Word Origin and History for holder



c.1400, "tenant, occupier," agent noun from hold (v.). Meaning "device for holding something" is attested from 1833.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper