keep something back Definition
verb kept, keeping
- 1. To have; to possess.
2. To continue to have something; not to part with it; to save.
- Thesaurus: accumulate, amass, preserve, retain, grasp, hold, collect, conserve, maintain, heap, hold on to, pile, stock, store.
- Example: keep one's temper
tr & intr
5. To remain or cause something to remain in a certain state, position, place, etc.
6. To continue or be frequently doing something.
- Example: keep smiling
- Example: kept fainting
8. To own and look after (an animal, etc).
- Example: keep hens
10. To look after something.
- Example: keep house
- Example: keep this for me
- Thesaurus: care for, minister to, attend, run, direct, look after, manage, operate, safeguard, shelter, support, sustain, tend.
11. Said of food: to remain fit to be eaten.
- Example: This cake keeps well
13. To obey (the law, etc).
14. To preserve (a secret).
15. To stick to (a promise or appointment).
16. To celebrate (a festival, etc) in the traditional way; to follow (a custom).
17. To support someone financially.
18. To employ.
- Example: We keep a gardener
- Example: keep them from harm
- To guard (the goal).
- To guard the wicket.
- Form: keep wicket (usually)
- Example: managed to keep his feet despite the strong wind
- 1. The cost of one's food and other daily expenses.
- Example: earn one's keep
Permanently; for good.
- How are you?
- To persevere in spite of problems.
- To help them survive difficulties, etc.
- To avoid the company of others.
- Not to reveal it to others.
To compete with neighbours in a display of material prosperity. See also keep up with someone below.
Phrasal Verb: keep at something
- To persevere at or persist in it.
- To conceal information, etc.To suppress (laughter, tears, etc).
- To keep low; to hide.
- To oppress them; to prevent their development or progress, etc.
- To control or limit (prices, development, etc).To oppress or restrain it.To manage not to vomit (food, etc).
- To hold back from doing it or delay doing it.
- Example: couldn't keep from laughing
- To prevent them from doing it.
- To prevent (information) from reaching them.
- To confine them; to prevent them from escaping.
- Example: was kept in after school and given one hundred lines
- To confine it; to hold it back.To conceal it.
- To remain on good terms with them, especially for selfish reasons.
- To avoid (a harmful food, awkward topic, etc).To stay away from it
- Example: Keep off my books!
- To prevent them from approaching or attacking it.
- To persist in it.
- To continue to employ them.
- To continue renting or using it.
- Example: We had a flat in town but decided not to keep it on
- Example: Keep your gloves on
- To talk continually and repetitively about it or them.
- To nag or harass them.
- Not to leave it.
- Example: Keep to the path
- To make them adhere to (a promise, decision, etc).
- Example: I'll keep you to that
- To subdue, repress or crush them.
- To prevent (eg spirits, morale, etc) from falling.To maintain (a habit, friendship, pace, etc).To go on making (payments, etc).To maintain (a house, garden, etc) in good condition.
- Not to be left behind by them.To maintain the pace or standard set by them.