Meaning of HOLD in English


I. ˈhōld verb

( held ˈheld ; hold·ing )

Etymology: Middle English, from Old English healdan; akin to Old High German haltan to hold, and perhaps to Latin celer rapid, Greek klonos agitation

Date: before 12th century

transitive verb


a. : to have possession or ownership of or have at one's disposal

hold s property worth millions

the bank hold s the title to the car

b. : to have as a privilege or position of responsibility

hold a professorship

c. : to have as a mark of distinction

hold s the record for the 100-yard dash

hold s a PhD

2. : to keep under restraint

hold price increases to a minimum


a. : to prevent free expression of

hold your temper

b. : to prevent from some action

ordered the troops to hold fire

the only restraining motive which may hold the hand of a tyrant — Thomas Jefferson

c. : to keep back from use

ask them to hold a room for us

I'll have a hot dog, and hold the mustard

d. : to delay temporarily the handling of

please hold all my calls

3. : to make liable or accountable or bound to an obligation

I'll hold you to your promise


a. : to have or maintain in the grasp

hold my hand

this is how you hold the racket

also : aim , point

held a gun on them

b. : to support in a particular position or keep from falling or moving

hold me up so I can see

hold the ladder steady

a clamp hold s the whole thing together

hold your head up

c. : to bear the pressure of : support

can the roof hold all of that weight

5. : to prevent from leaving or getting away

hold the train


a. : to avoid emitting or letting out

how long can you hold your breath

b. : to restrain as or as if a captive

the suspect was held without bail

held them at gunpoint

also : to have strong appeal to

the book held my interest throughout


a. : to enclose and keep in a container or within bounds : contain

the jug hold s one gallon

this corral will not hold all of the horses

b. : to be able to consume easily or without undue effect

can't hold any more pie

especially : to be able to drink (alcoholic beverages) without becoming noticeably drunk

can't hold your liquor

c. : accommodate

the restaurant hold s 400 diners

d. : to have as a principal or essential feature or attribute

the book hold s a number of surprises

also : to have in store

no one knows what the future hold s


a. : to have in the mind or express as a judgment, opinion, or belief

I hold the view that this is wrong

hold a grudge

hold ing that it is nobody's business but his — Jack Olsen

— often used with against

in America they hold everything you say against you — Paul McCartney

b. : to think of in a particular way : regard

were held in high esteem


a. : to assemble for and carry on the activity of

held a convention

b. : to cause to be carried on : conduct

will hold a seminar

c. : to produce or sponsor especially as a public exhibition

will hold an art show


a. : to maintain occupation, control, or defense of

the troops held the ridge

also : to resist the offensive efforts or advance of

held the opposing team to just two points

b. : to maintain (a certain condition, situation, or course of action) without change

hold a course due east

10. : to cover (a part of the body) especially for protection

had to hold their ears because of the cold

intransitive verb


a. : to maintain position : refuse to give ground

the defensive line is hold ing

b. : to continue in the same way or to the same degree : last

hopes the weather will hold

— often used with up

2. : to derive right or title — often used with of or from

3. : to be or remain valid : apply

the rule hold s in most cases

— often used in the phrase hold true

4. : to maintain a grasp on something : remain fastened to something

the anchor held in the rough sea

5. : to go ahead as one has been going

held south for several miles

6. : to bear or carry oneself

asked him to hold still

7. : to forbear an intended or threatened action : halt , pause — often used as a command

8. : to stop counting during a countdown

9. slang : to have illicit drug material in one's possession

Synonyms: see contain

- hold a brief for

- hold a candle to

- hold court

- hold forth

- hold hands

- hold one's breath

- hold one's horses

- hold one's own

- hold one's tongue

- hold sway

- hold the bag

- hold the fort

- hold the line

- hold to

- hold to account

- hold water

- hold with

II. noun

Date: 14th century

1. : stronghold 1


a. : confinement , custody

b. : prison



(1) : the act or the manner of holding or grasping : grip

released his hold on the handle

(2) : a manner of grasping an opponent in wrestling

b. : a nonphysical bond that attaches, restrains, or constrains or by which something is affected, controlled, or dominated

has lost its hold on the broad public — Oscar Cargill

c. : full comprehension

get hold of exactly what is happening — J. P. Lyford

d. : full or immediate control : possession

get hold of yourself

wants to get hold of a road map

e. : touch 14 — used with of

tried to get hold of me

4. : something that may be grasped as a support


a. : fermata

b. : the time between the onset and the release of a vocal articulation

6. : a sudden motionless posture at the end of a dance


a. : an order or indication that something is to be reserved or delayed

b. : a delay in a countdown (as in launching a spacecraft)

- on hold

III. noun

Etymology: alteration of hole

Date: 1591

1. : the interior of a ship below decks ; especially : the cargo deck of a ship

2. : the cargo compartment of a plane

Merriam-Webster's Collegiate English vocabulary.      Энциклопедический словарь английского языка Merriam Webster.