Meaning of KEEP in English


transcription, транскрипция: [ ki:p ]

( keeps, keeping, kept)

Frequency: The word is one of the 700 most common words in English.


If someone keeps or is kept in a particular state, they remain in it.

The noise kept him awake...

To keep warm they burnt wood in a rusty oil barrel...

For several years I kept in touch with her.

V-LINK : V n adj / prep , V adj / prep , V adj / prep


If you keep or you are kept in a particular position or place, you remain in it.

Keep away from the doors while the train is moving...

He kept his head down, hiding his features...

Doctors will keep her in hospital for at least another week.

VERB : V adv / prep , V n with adv , V n prep


If you keep off something or keep away from it, you avoid it. If you keep out of something, you avoid getting involved in it. You can also say that you keep someone off , away from or out of something.

I managed to stick to the diet and keep off sweet foods...

The best way to keep babies off sugar is to go back to the natural diet and eat lots of fresh fruit.

VERB : V prep / adv , V n prep / adv


If someone or something keeps you from a particular action, they prevent you from doing it.

Embarrassment has kept me from doing all sorts of things...

= stop

VERB : V n from -ing


If you try to keep from doing something, you try to stop yourself from doing it.

She bit her lip to keep from crying...

VERB : V from -ing


If you keep something from someone, you do not tell them about it.

She knew that Gabriel was keeping something from her.

VERB : V n from n


If you keep doing something, you do it repeatedly or continue to do it.

I keep forgetting it’s December...

I turned back after a while, but he kept walking...

VERB : V -ing , V -ing

Keep on means the same as keep .

Did he give up or keep on trying?...



Keep is used with some nouns to indicate that someone does something for a period of time or continues to do it. For example, if you keep a grip on something, you continue to hold or control it.

Until last year, the regime kept a tight grip on the country...

One of them would keep a look-out on the road behind to warn us of approaching vehicles...

VERB : V n , V n


If you keep something, you continue to have it in your possession and do not throw it away, give it away, or sell it.

Lathan had to choose between marrying her and keeping his job.

VERB : V n


If you keep something in a particular place, you always have it or store it in that place so that you can use it whenever you need it.

She kept her money under the mattress...

To make it easier to contact us, keep this card handy.

VERB : V n prep / adv , V n adj


When you keep something such as a promise or an appointment, you do what you said you would do.

I’m hoping you’ll keep your promise to come for a long visit...

VERB : V n


If you keep a record of a series of events, you write down details of it so that they can be referred to later.

Eleanor began to keep a diary...

VERB : V n


If you keep yourself or keep someone else, you support yourself or the other person by earning enough money to provide food, clothing, money, and other necessary things.

She could just about afford to keep her five kids...

I just cannot afford to keep myself...

The pay was enough to keep him in whisky for a day or two.

VERB : V n , V pron-refl , V n in n


Someone’s keep is the cost of food and other things that they need in their daily life.

Ray will earn his keep on local farms while studying...

N-SING : poss N


If you keep animals, you own them and take care of them.

I’ve brought you some eggs. We keep chickens...

VERB : V n


If someone or something keeps you, they delay you and make you late.

‘What kept you?’—‘I went in the wrong direction.’

VERB : V n


If food keeps for a certain length of time, it stays fresh and suitable to eat for that time.

Whatever is left over may be put into the refrigerator, where it will keep for 2-3 weeks.



You can say or ask how someone is keeping as a way of saying or asking whether they are well.

She hasn’t been keeping too well lately...

VERB : only cont , V adv


A keep is the main tower of a medieval castle, in which people lived.



If you keep at it , you continue doing something that you have started, even if you are tired and would prefer to stop.

It may take a number of attempts, but it is worth keeping at it...

PHRASE : V inflects


If you keep going , you continue moving along or doing something that you have started, even if you are tired and would prefer to stop.

She forced herself to keep going...

PHRASE : keep inflects


If one thing is in keeping with another, it is suitable in relation to that thing. If one thing is out of keeping with another, it is not suitable in relation to that thing.

His office was in keeping with his station and experience...

PHRASE : v-link PHR , PHR with cl , oft PHR with n


If you keep it up , you continue working or trying as hard as you have been in the past.

You’re doing a great job! Keep it up!

PHRASE : V inflects


If you keep something to yourself , you do not tell anyone else about it.

I have to tell someone. I can’t keep it to myself...

PHRASE : V inflects


If you keep yourself to yourself or keep to yourself , you stay on your own most of the time and do not mix socially with other people.

He was a quiet man who kept himself to himself...

≠ socialize

PHRASE : V inflects


to keep someone company: see company

to keep a straight face: see face

to keep your head: see head

to keep pace: see pace

to keep the peace: see peace

to keep a secret: see secret

to keep time: see time

to keep track: see track

Collins COBUILD Advanced Learner's English Dictionary.      Английский словарь Коллинз COBUILD для изучающих язык на продвинутом уровне.