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Definition of 'hold back'


  1. hold back, as of a danger or an enemy; check the expansion or influence of; "Arrest the downward trend"; "Check the growth of communism in South East Asia"; "Contain the rebel movement"; "Turn back the tide of communism"
       Synonyms: check turn back arrest stop contain
  2. keep under control; keep in check; "suppress a smile"; "Keep your temper"; "keep your cool"
       Synonyms: restrain suppress keep keep back
  3. refrain from doing; "she forbore a snicker"
       Synonyms: forbear
  4. wait before acting; "the scientists held off announcing their results until they repeated the experiment"
       Synonyms: wait hold off
  5. secure and keep for possible future use or application; "The landlord retained the security deposit"; "I reserve the right to disagree"
       Synonyms: retain hold keep back
  6. hold back; keep from being perceived by others; "She conceals her anger well"
       Synonyms: conceal hold in

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