Practical English : Multiple Meanings & Usages of The Word ‘Hold’

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The word ‘hold’ as a verb has multiple meanings and usages in our daily life leading. Once you will have a deep knowledge on all of them, then you will surely be able to make a huge number of expressions or communication. So no more wait to learn about the usages of this multi-meaning verb!!

A. Hold as a verb means ‘support something’. In other words, it means ‘to take & keep something in your hand or arms’. See the examples below :

  1. Can you hold this bag for a while? (meaning ‘can u take and keep it for some time?’).
  2. Can you hold the baby while I finish writing the letter?
  3. The baby was holding a bottle in his hand while I last saw her in front of the house.
  4. He was holding a gun.
  5. The little girl is holding her mother’s hand.

B. Hold means ‘to contain something’. In other words, it means ‘something can contain or be able to contain something else’. Look at the sentences below :

  1. How much water can this bottle hold?—It can hold maximum two litters of it.
  2. I think this bag only cannot hold all the things you bought.
  3. This auditorium can hold about 5 thousand spectators at a time.
  4. Nowadays even smartphones can hold huge volume of information.

C. Hold means ‘continue something’ in the same way as it is now or as it was before. See the sentences below :

  1. Who can tell what the future holds?
  2. It is expected that the ceasefire between Hamas and Israel will hold for possibly a long time.
  3. The so called proverb or saying ‘money talks’ still holds true.

D. Hold means ‘to have a particular quality’. See the examples below :

  1. Our new boss holds strong personality to influence people.
  2. The winner of Miss World 2021 holds huge glamour.
  3. Actress Jahnvi Kapoor holds massive glamour even at this age.
  4. Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman held impressive leadership quality and thereby caught the attention of the whole world.

E. Hold means ‘make something happen’. In other words, it means ‘arrange or organize something’ such as an election, meeting, exam etc. Have a look at the following sentences :

  1. We are going to hold a webinar tomorrow on the issue of increasing violence against women even during the ongoing pandemic.
  2. Our boss is set to hold a meeting today on the latest development regarding local job market
  3. The final exam is set to be held from middle of the next month.
  4. The next parliamentary election will be held in December 2023.
  5. The government yesterday held an emergency meeting on the covid-19 situation in the country involving all stakeholders.

F. Hold as a verb means ‘Delay’. In other words, it means ‘to wait or stop something temporarily.’ See the sentences below :

  1. Please hold the musical programme for some time. (Meaning ‘stop it’ for some time).
  2. Could you please hold for minutes as the boss is on the phone now? (meaning could you please wait for some time).
  3. Could you hold the order for some days as we have some financial difficulties now due to the covid-19 pandemic?
  4. How long can you hold your breath (= stop breathing)?
  5. The boss is on the phone at the moment. Can you hold (the line) please? (meaning ‘can you wait some time on the line’).

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G. Hold as a verb refers to ‘have something, especially a position or money’ or ‘have control over something’. Look at the following sentences :

  1. My father now holds the position of General Manager at his office where he has been serving for the last 30 years.
  2. Nowadays politicians in Bangladesh hold huge amount of personal wealth.
  3. Taliban now holds the town of Kabul, the capital city of Afghanistan. (here hold means ‘to control’).

H. Hold as a verb means ‘not include something or ask someone to refrain from including something’. See the sentences below :

  1. Please include this one, hold that. (asking someone to not include something in something else).
  2. You should hold anything harmful in baby diets (meaning not include).
  3. Now I would like to have coffee, hold tea from the order.

I. Hold as a verb means ‘to keep something for the future need or maintain something as it has been’. Look at the sentences below :

  1. The government has decided to hold income tax rate at 4.5 percent for another year. (meaning ‘maintain the rate’).

2. If you want to earn success as a singer, then you need to hold the current viewership for your YouTube Channel.

3. Could you please hold this item for me until next week?

J. Hold as a verb means ‘to support something or keep something in a particular position’. See the sentences below :

  1. It is too hot today. Could you please ‘hold the window open’ for some time? (meaning ‘keep the window open’).
  2. Beggars usually hold their hands out.
  3. Yesterday at Dhaka zoo, my daughter held an apple out for the monkeys.
  4. Please hold your hands out for some time.
  5. Those who agree with the decision, hold up your hands (= raise your arms) please.

Note : Hold as a verb has hundreds, if not thousands, more usages which will be discussed in the following episodes. So keep browsing us!! Also do not forget practicing what you have learnt on the practical uses of the verb ‘hold’.

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