The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
House \House\ (hous), n.; pl. Houses. [OE. hous, hus, AS. h?s;
akin to OS. & OFries. h?s, D. huis, OHG. h?s, G. haus, Icel.
h?s, Sw. hus, Dan. huus, Goth. gudh?s, house of God, temple;
and prob. to E. hide to conceal. See Hide, and cf. Hoard,
Husband, Hussy, Husting.]
1. A structure intended or used as a habitation or shelter
for animals of any kind; but especially, a building or
edifice for the habitation of man; a dwelling place, a
Houses are built to live in; not to look on.
Bees with smoke and doves with noisome stench
Are from their hives and houses driven away. --Shak.
2. Household affairs; domestic concerns; particularly in the
phrase to keep house. See below.
3. Those who dwell in the same house; a household.
One that feared God with all his house. --Acts x. 2.
4. A family of ancestors, descendants, and kindred; a race of
persons from the same stock; a tribe; especially, a noble
family or an illustrious race; as, the house of Austria;
the house of Hanover; the house of Israel.
The last remaining pillar of their house,
The one transmitter of their ancient name.
5. One of the estates of a kingdom or other government
assembled in parliament or legislature; a body of men
united in a legislative capacity; as, the House of Lords;
the House of Commons; the House of Representatives; also,
a quorum of such a body. See Congress, and Parliament.
6. (Com.) A firm, or commercial establishment.
7. A public house; an inn; a hotel.
8. (Astrol.) A twelfth part of the heavens, as divided by six
circles intersecting at the north and south points of the
horizon, used by astrologers in noting the positions of
the heavenly bodies, and casting horoscopes or nativities.
The houses were regarded as fixed in respect to the
horizon, and numbered from the one at the eastern horizon,
called the ascendant, first house, or house of life,
downward, or in the direction of the earth's revolution,
the stars and planets passing through them in the reverse
order every twenty-four hours.
9. A square on a chessboard, regarded as the proper place of
10. An audience; an assembly of hearers, as at a lecture, a
theater, etc.; as, a thin or a full house.
11. The body, as the habitation of the soul.
This mortal house I'll ruin,
Do C[ae]sar what he can. --Shak.
Usage: [With an adj., as narrow, dark, etc.] The grave. "The
narrow house." --Bryant.
Note: House is much used adjectively and as the first element
of compounds. The sense is usually obvious; as, house
cricket, housemaid, house painter, housework.
House ant (Zool.), a very small, yellowish brown ant
(Myrmica molesta), which often infests houses, and
sometimes becomes a great pest.
House of bishops (Prot. Epis. Ch.), one of the two bodies
composing a general convertion, the other being House of
Clerical and Lay Deputies.
House boat, a covered boat used as a dwelling.
House of call, a place, usually a public house, where
journeymen connected with a particular trade assemble when
out of work, ready for the call of employers. [Eng.]
To bring down the house. See under Bring.
To keep house, to maintain an independent domestic
To keep open house, to entertain friends at all times.
Syn: Dwelling; residence; abode. See Tenement.
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Keep \Keep\ (k[=e]p), v. t. [imp. & p. p. Kept (k[e^]pt); p.
pr. & vb. n. Keeping.] [OE. k[=e]pen, AS. c[=e]pan to keep,
regard, desire, await, take, betake; cf. AS. copenere lover,
OE. copnien to desire.]
1. To care; to desire. [Obs.]
I kepe not of armes for to yelp [boast]. --Chaucer.
2. To hold; to restrain from departure or removal; not to let
go of; to retain in one's power or possession; not to
lose; to retain; to detain.
If we lose the field,
We can not keep the town. --Shak.
That I may know what keeps me here with you.
If we would weigh and keep in our minds what we are
considering, that would instruct us. --Locke.
3. To cause to remain in a given situation or condition; to
maintain unchanged; to hold or preserve in any state or
His loyalty he kept, his love, his zeal. --Milton.
Keep a stiff rein, and move but gently on.
Note: In this sense it is often used with prepositions and
adverbs, as to keep away, to keep down, to keep from,
to keep in, out, or off, etc. "To keep off impertinence
and solicitation from his superior." --Addison.
4. To have in custody; to have in some place for
preservation; to take charge of.
The crown of Stephanus, first king of Hungary, was
always kept in the castle of Vicegrade. --Knolles.
5. To preserve from danger, harm, or loss; to guard.
Behold, I am with thee, and will keep thee. --Gen.
6. To preserve from discovery or publicity; not to
communicate, reveal, or betray, as a secret.
Great are thy virtues . . . though kept from man.
7. To attend upon; to have the care of; to tend.
And the Lord God took the man, and put him into the
garden of Eden, to dress it and to keep it. --Gen.
In her girlish age, she kept sheep on the moor.
8. To record transactions, accounts, or events in; as, to
keep books, a journal, etc.; also, to enter (as accounts,
records, etc. ) in a book.
9. To maintain, as an establishment, institution, or the
like; to conduct; to manage; as, to keep store.
Like a pedant that keeps a school. --Shak.
Every one of them kept house by himself. --Hayward.
10. To supply with necessaries of life; to entertain; as, to
11. To have in one's service; to have and maintain, as an
assistant, a servant, a mistress, a horse, etc.
I keep but three men and a boy. --Shak.
12. To have habitually in stock for sale.
13. To continue in, as a course or mode of action; not to
intermit or fall from; to hold to; to maintain; as, to
keep silence; to keep one's word; to keep possession.
Both day and night did we keep company. --Shak.
Within this portal as I kept my watch. --Smollett.
14. To observe; to adhere to; to fulfill; not to swerve from
or violate; to practice or perform, as duty; not to
neglect; to be faithful to.
I have kept the faith. --2 Tim. iv.
Him whom to love is to obey, and keep
His great command. --Milton.
15. To confine one's self to; not to quit; to remain in; as,
to keep one's house, room, bed, etc.; hence, to haunt; to
'Tis hallowed ground;
Fairies, and fawns, and satyrs do it keep. --J.
16. To observe duly, as a festival, etc.; to celebrate; to
solemnize; as, to keep a feast.
I went with them to the house of God . . . with a
multitude that kept holyday. --Ps. xlii. 4.
To keep at arm's length. See under Arm, n.
To keep back.
(a) To reserve; to withhold. "I will keep nothing back
from you." --Jer. xlii. 4.
(b) To restrain; to hold back. "Keep back thy servant
also from presumptuous sins." --Ps. xix. 13.
To keep company with.
(a) To frequent the society of; to associate with; as,
let youth keep company with the wise and good.
(b) To accompany; to go with; as, to keep company with
one on a voyage; also, to pay court to, or accept
attentions from, with a view to marriage. [Colloq.]
To keep counsel. See under Counsel, n.
To keep down.
(a) To hold in subjection; to restrain; to hinder.
(b) (Fine Arts) To subdue in tint or tone, as a portion
of a picture, so that the spectator's attention may
not be diverted from the more important parts of the
To keep good hours or To keep bad hours, to be
customarily early (or late) in returning home or in
retiring to rest.
To keep house.
(a) To occupy a separate house or establishment, as with
one's family, as distinguished from boarding; to
manage domestic affairs.
(b) (Eng. Bankrupt Law) To seclude one's self in one's
house in order to evade the demands of creditors.
To keep one's hand in, to keep in practice.
To keep open house, to be hospitable.
To keep the peace (Law), to avoid or to prevent a breach of
To keep school, to govern, manage and instruct or teach a
school, as a preceptor.
To keep a stiff upper lip, to keep up one's courage.
To keep term.
(a) (Eng. Universities) To reside during a term.
(b) (Inns of Court) To eat a sufficient number of dinners
in hall to make the term count for the purpose of
being called to the bar. [Eng.] --Mozley & W.
To keep touch. See under Touch, n.
To keep under, to hold in subjection; hence, to oppress.
To keep up.
(a) To maintain; to prevent from falling or diminution;
as, to keep up the price of goods; to keep up one's
(b) To maintain; to continue; to prevent from ceasing.
"In joy, that which keeps up the action is the desire
to continue it." --Locke.
Syn: To retain; detain; reserve; preserve; hold; restrain;
maintain; sustain; support; withhold. -- To Keep.
Usage: Retain, Preserve. Keep is the generic term, and is
often used where retain or preserve would too much
restrict the meaning; as, to keep silence, etc. Retain
denotes that we keep or hold things, as against
influences which might deprive us of them, or reasons
which might lead us to give them up; as, to retain
vivacity in old age; to retain counsel in a lawsuit;
to retain one's servant after a reverse of fortune.
Preserve denotes that we keep a thing against agencies
which might lead to its being destroyed or broken in
upon; as, to preserve one's health; to preserve