verb (used with object), held; held or (Archaic) hold·en; hold·ing.
verb (used without object), held; held or (Archaic) hold·en; hold·ing.
- to restrain or check: Police held back the crowd.
- to retain possession of; keep back: He held back ten dollars.
- to refrain from revealing; withhold: to hold back information.
- to refrain from participating or engaging in some activity: He held back from joining in the singing because he felt depressed.
- Photography. dodge(def 2).
- to restrain; check: Hold down that noise!
- to continue to hold and manage well: She held down that job for years.
- to extend or offer; propose.
- to talk at great length; harangue: When we left, he was still holding forth on World War II.
- to restrain; check; curb.
- to contain oneself; exercise restraint: He was raging inside, but held himself in for fear of saying something he would regret.
- to keep at a distance; resist; repel.
- to postpone action; defer: If you hold off applying for a passport, you may not get one in time.
- to keep a firm grip on.
- to keep going; continue.
- to maintain, as one's opinion or position.
- to stop; halt (usually used imperatively): Hold on now! That isn't what I meant at all.
- to keep a telephone connection open by not hanging up the receiver: The operator asked us to hold on while the number we'd dialed was being checked.
- to present; offer.
- to stretch forth; extend: Hold out your hand.
- to continue to exist; last: Will the food hold out?
- to refuse to yield or submit: The defenders held out for weeks.
- to withhold something expected or due: He was suspected of holding out information important to the case.
- to keep for future consideration or action; postpone.
- to remain in possession or in office beyond the regular term.
- to remain beyond the arranged period: The movie was held over for a week.
- Music. to prolong (a tone) from one measure to the next.
- to offer; give: She held up his father as an example to follow.
- to present to notice; expose: to hold someone up to ridicule.
- to hinder; delay: The plane's departure was held up because of the storm.
- to stop by force in order to rob.
- to support; uphold: to hold up farm prices.
- to stop; halt: They held up at the gate.
- to maintain one's position or condition; endure: They held up through all their troubles.
- to be in agreement with; concur with: I don't hold with his pessimistic views.
- to approve of; condone: They won't hold with such a travesty of justice.
- to get a hold on: Get hold of the railing.
- to communicate with, especially by telephone: If she's not at home, try to get hold of her at the office.
- in or into a state of temporary interruption or suspension: The project will be put on hold until funds become available.
- Telecommunications. in or into a state of temporary interruption in a telephone connection: I'm putting you on hold to answer another call.Compare call waiting.
Origin of hold1
Related formshold·a·ble, adjective
Definition for holds (2 of 2)
- the entire cargo space in the hull of a vessel.
- the cargo space in the hull of a vessel between the lowermost deck and the bottom.
- any individual compartment of such cargo spaces, closed by bulkheads and having its own hatchway.
Origin of hold2
Examples from the Web for holds
The second lesson is that no one writing before the twentieth century holds a key to our problems.
Eventually, Weirich had to kick out her jacuzzi and plants from her sunroom, where she now holds court.
Whatever the future holds for Africa, optimism certainly abounds.
He holds them on his belly and looks at them with a magnifying glass, studying possible escape routes.Alfred Hitchcock’s Fade to Black: The Great Director’s Final Days|David Freeman|December 13, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Fees can range from £5,000 to £20,000, the attraction being the relatability she holds with her subscribers.Meet Zoella—The Newbie Author Whose Book Sales Topped J.K. Rowling|Lucy Scholes|December 11, 2014|DAILY BEAST
But a humorist picks them up and holds them this way and that.Drawn at a Venture|Fougasse
Over one of them the woven product passes as the loom is operated, while the other holds the unwoven warp.The Library of Work and Play: Home Decoration|Charles Franklin Warner
A soldier introducing a woman to another man, who holds a scythe in his hand.The Dance of Death|Francis Douce
But she holds it on sufferance and by a complimentary construction of language which does not refer to her.The Innocents Abroad|Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens)
If art "holds the mirror up to nature" this art's mirror is the largest of all, the most used.Our Androcentric Culture, or The Man Made World|Charlotte Perkins Gilman
British Dictionary definitions for holds (1 of 2)
verb holds, holding or held (hɛld)
- stop! wait!
- stay in the same position! as when being photographed
- a tenure or holding, esp of land
- (in combination)leasehold; freehold; copyhold
- to obtain
- to come into contact with
Derived Formsholdable, adjective
Word Origin for hold
British Dictionary definitions for holds (2 of 2)
Word Origin for hold
Idioms and Phrases with holds
In addition to the idioms beginning with hold
- hold a candle to, not
- hold against
- hold a grudge
- hold a gun to someone's head
- hold all the aces
- hold at bay
- hold back
- hold court
- hold down
- hold everything
- hold forth
- hold good
- hold it
- hold no brief for
- hold off
- hold on
- hold one's breath
- hold one's end up
- hold one's fire
- hold one's head high
- hold one's horses
- hold one's own
- hold one's peace
- hold one's temper
- hold one's tongue
- hold on to
- hold on to your hat
- hold out
- hold out on
- hold over
- hold someone's feet to the fire
- hold still for
- hold sway over
- hold the bag
- hold the fort
- hold the line
- hold the phone
- hold the purse strings
- hold to
- hold true
- hold up
- hold water
- hold with
- hold your
- (hold) at bay
- bear (hold) a grudge
- get hold of
- hang (hold) on to your hat
- have a hold over
- lay hold of
- leave holding the bag
- no holds barred
- on hold
- (hold the) purse strings
- stand (hold) one's ground
- take hold