The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Hold \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.] [OE. haldan, D. houden,
OHG. hoten, Icel. halda, Dan. holde, Sw. h[*a]lla, Goth.
haldan to feed, tend (the cattle); of unknown origin. Gf.
Avast, Halt, Hod.]
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.
Thy right hand shall hold me. --Ps. cxxxix.
They all hold swords, being expert in war. --Cant.
In vain he seeks, that having can not hold.
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.
2. To retain in one's keeping; to maintain possession of, or
authority over; not to give up or relinquish; to keep; to
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.
And now the strand, and now the plain, they held.
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
Hold not thy peace, and be not still. --Ps. lxxxiii.
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.
One sees more devils than vast hell can hold.
8. To accept, as an opinion; to be the adherent of, openly or
privately; to persist in, as a purpose; to maintain; to
Stand fast and hold the traditions which ye have
been taught. --2 Thes.
But still he held his purpose to depart. --Dryden.
9. To consider; to regard; to esteem; to account; to think;
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.
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.]
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
(d) To rein in; to check; to halt; as, hold up your
(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.
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Play \Play\, n.
1. Amusement; sport; frolic; gambols.
2. Any exercise, or series of actions, intended for amusement
or diversion; a game.
John naturally loved rough play. --Arbuthnot.
3. The act or practice of contending for victory, amusement,
or a prize, as at dice, cards, or billiards; gaming; as,
to lose a fortune in play.
4. Action; use; employment; exercise; practice; as, fair
play; sword play; a play of wit. "The next who comes in
5. A dramatic composition; a comedy or tragedy; a composition
in which characters are represented by dialogue and
A play ought to be a just image of human nature.
6. The representation or exhibition of a comedy or tragedy;
as, he attends ever play.
7. Performance on an instrument of music.
8. Motion; movement, regular or irregular; as, the play of a
wheel or piston; hence, also, room for motion; free and
easy action. "To give them play, front and rear."
The joints are let exactly into one another, that
they have no play between them. --Moxon.
9. Hence, liberty of acting; room for enlargement or display;
scope; as, to give full play to mirth.
Play actor, an actor of dramas. --Prynne.
Play debt, a gambling debt. --Arbuthnot.
Play pleasure, idle amusement. [Obs.] --Bacon.
A play upon words, the use of a word in such a way as to be
capable of double meaning; punning.
Play of colors, prismatic variation of colors.
To bring into play, To come into play, to bring or come
into use or exercise.
To hold in play, to keep occupied or employed.
I, with two more to help me,
Will hold the foe in play. --Macaulay.