Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word

hold down

 - definitions and thesaurus

What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.



The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary. Click on the thesaurus category heading under the button in an entry to see the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

phrasal verb [transitive]
Word Forms
present tense
I/you/we/theyhold down
he/she/itholds down
present participleholding down
past tenseheld down
past participleheld down
  1. 1
    to hold someone who is lying down, so that they cannot move

    Four people held him down.

    Synonyms and related words for this sense of hold down
  2. 2
    to hold something so it does not move upwards

    They put a cloth on the grass and stones on the edge to hold it down.

    Synonyms and related words for this sense of hold down
  3. 3
    to prevent something from developing, or to prevent someone from doing what they want

    She proved that being a woman wouldn't hold her down.

  4. 4
    to stop prices or numbers from rising

    a deal to hold down wages and prices

  5. 5
    to succeed in keeping a job

    Half of them have never held down a proper job.

  6. 6
    to stop someone from having their freedom or rights

    The regime had been holding down its people for years.

    Synonyms and related words for this sense of hold down
See also main entry: hold


web content which is specifically intended to make Facebook users click the 'Like' button associated with it

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary


the possibility of Greece leaving the Eurozone …

add a word


A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog