Hold, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Held p. pr. & vb. n. Holding. Holden p. p., is obs. in elegant writing, though still used in legal language.]
1. To cause to remain in a given situation, position, or relation, within certain limits, or the like; to prevent from falling or escaping; to sustain; to restrain; to keep in the grasp; to retain.
The loops held one curtain to another. --Ex. xxxvi. 12.
Thy right hand shall hold me. --Ps. cxxxix. 10.
They all hold swords, being expert in war. --Cant. iii. 8.
In vain he seeks, that having can not hold. --Spenser.
France, thou mayst hold a serpent by the tongue, . . .
A fasting tiger safer by the tooth,
Than keep in peace that hand which thou dost hold. --Shak.
2. To retain in one's keeping; to maintain possession of, or authority over; not to give up or relinquish; to keep; to defend.
We mean to hold what anciently we claim
Of deity or empire. --Milton.
3. To have; to possess; to be in possession of; to occupy; to derive title to; as, to hold office.
This noble merchant held a noble house. --Chaucer.
Of him to hold his seigniory for a yearly tribute. --Knolles.
And now the strand, and now the plain, they held. --Dryden.
4. To impose restraint upon; to limit in motion or action; to bind legally or morally; to confine; to restrain.
We can not hold mortality's strong hand. --Shak.
Death! what do'st? O, hold thy blow. --Grashaw.
He had not sufficient judgment and self-command to hold his tongue. --Macaulay.
5. To maintain in being or action; to carry on; to prosecute, as a course of conduct or an argument; to continue; to sustain.
Hold not thy peace, and be not still. --Ps. lxxxiii. 1.
Seedtime and harvest, heat and hoary frost,
Shall hold their course. --Milton.
6. To prosecute, have, take, or join in, as something which is the result of united action; as to, hold a meeting, a festival, a session, etc.; hence, to direct and bring about officially; to conduct or preside at; as, the general held a council of war; a judge holds a court; a clergyman holds a service.
I would hold more talk with thee. --Shak.
7. To receive and retain; to contain as a vessel; as, this pail holds milk; hence, to be able to receive and retain; to have capacity or containing power for.
Broken cisterns that can hold no water. --Jer. ii. 13.
One sees more devils than vast hell can hold. --Shak.
8. To accept, as an opinion; to be the adherent of, openly or privately; to persist in, as a purpose; to maintain; to sustain.
Stand fast and hold the traditions which ye have been taught. --2 Thes. ii.15.
But still he held his purpose to depart. --Dryden.
9. To consider; to regard; to esteem; to account; to think; to judge.
I hold him but a fool. --Shak.
I shall never hold that man my friend. --Shak.
The Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain. --Ex. xx. 7.
10. To bear, carry, or manage; as he holds himself erect; he holds his head high.
Let him hold his fingers thus. --Shak.
To hold a wager, to lay or hazard a wager. --Swift.
To hold forth, (a) v. t.to offer; to exhibit; to propose; to put forward. “The propositions which books hold forth and pretend to teach.” --Locke. (b) v. i. To talk at length; to harangue.
To held in, to restrain; to curd.
To hold in hand, to toy with; to keep in expectation; to have in one's power. [Obs.]
O, fie! to receive favors, return falsehoods,
And hold a lady in hand. --Beaw. & Fl.
-- To hold in play, to keep under control; to dally with. --Macaulay.
To hold off, to keep at a distance.
To hold on, to hold in being, continuance or position; as, to hold a rider on.
To hold one's day, to keep one's appointment. [Obs.] --Chaucer.
To hold one's own. To keep good one's present condition absolutely or relatively; not to fall off, or to lose ground; as, a ship holds her own when she does not lose ground in a race or chase; a man holds his own when he does not lose strength or weight.
To hold one's peace, to keep silence.- To hold out. (a) To extend; to offer. “Fortune holds out these to you as rewards.” --B. Jonson. (b) To continue to do or to suffer; to endure. “He can not long hold out these pangs.” --Shak.
To hold up. (a) To raise; to lift; as, hold up your head. (b) To support; to sustain. “He holds himself up in virtue.”--Sir P. Sidney. (c) To exhibit; to display; as, he was held up as an example. (d) To rein in; to check; to halt; as, hold up your horses. (e) to rob, usually at gunpoint; -- often with the demand to “hold up” the hands. (f) To delay.
To hold water. (a) Literally, to retain water without leaking; hence (Fig.), to be whole, sound, consistent, without gaps or holes; -- commonly used in a negative sense; as, his statements will not hold water. [Colloq.] (b) Naut. To hold the oars steady in the water, thus checking the headway of a boat.
1. The act or state of sustaining, grasping, or retaining.
2. A tenure; a farm or other estate held of another.
3. That which holds, binds, or influences.
4. The burden or chorus of a song. [Obs.]
Holding note Mus., a note sustained in one part, while the other parts move.
adj : designed for (usually temporary) retention; "a holding pen";
"a retaining wall" [syn: retaining]
n 1: the act of keeping in your possession [syn: retention, keeping]
2: something owned; any tangible or intangible possession that
is owned by someone; "that hat is my property"; "he is a
man of property"; [syn: property, belongings, material