[ meyn-teyn ]
/ meɪnˈteɪn /
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See synonyms for: maintain / maintained / maintaining / maintains on Thesaurus.com

verb (used with object)
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Origin of maintain

First recorded in 1200–50; Middle English mainteinen from Old French maintenir, ultimately from Medieval Latin manūtenēre, Latin manū tenēre literally, “to hold in hand,” equivalent to manū, ablative of manus “hand” + tenēre “to hold”; see manual, tenet

synonym study for maintain

4. Maintain, assert, aver, allege, hold, state all mean to express an opinion, judgment, or position. Maintain carries the implications of both firmness and persistence in declaring or supporting a conviction: She maintained her client's innocence even in the face of damaging evidence. Assert suggests assurance, confidence, and sometimes aggressiveness in the effort to persuade others to agree with or accept one's position: He asserted again and again the government's right to control the waterway. Aver, like assert, implies confident declaration and sometimes suggests a firmly positive or peremptory tone; in legal use aver means “to allege as fact”: to aver that the evidence is incontrovertible. Allege indicates a statement without evidence to support it, and thus can imply doubt as to the validity or accuracy of an assertion: The official is alleged to have been unaware of the crime. Hold means simply to have or express a conviction or belief: We hold these truths to be self-evident; She held that her rights had been violated. State usually suggests a declaration that is forthright and unambiguous: He stated his reasons in clear, simple language.


Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use maintain in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for maintain

/ (meɪnˈteɪn) /

verb (tr)
to continue or retain; keep in existence
to keep in proper or good conditionto maintain a building
to support a style of livingthe money maintained us for a month
(takes a clause as object) to state or asserthe maintained that Talbot was wrong
to defend against contradiction; upholdshe maintained her innocence
to defend against physical attack

Derived forms of maintain

maintainable, adjectivemaintainer, noun

Word Origin for maintain

C13: from Old French maintenir, ultimately from Latin manū tenēre to hold in the hand
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