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hold water


  • WordNet 3.6
    • v hold water resist or withstand wear, criticism, etc. "Her shoes won't hold up","This theory won't hold water"
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: The trunk of an elephant can hold up to two gallons of water
    • Hold water to be sound and firm, to endure trial
    • Hold water to be correct or well-grounded, to stand investigation
    • ***


  • Thomas L. Masson
    Thomas L. Masson
    “Prohibition may be a disputed theory, but none can say that it doesn't hold water.”
  • Swedish Proverb
    Swedish Proverb
    “Don't throw away the old bucket until you know whether the new one holds water.”
  • Robert Bolt
    Robert Bolt
    “When a man takes an oath, Meg, he's holding his ownself in his own hands. Like water. And if he opens his fingers then- he needn't hope to find himself again.”
  • Source Unknown
    Source Unknown
    “All good writing is swimming under water and holding your breath.”


Hold water - When you say that something does or does not 'hold water', it means that the point of view or argument put forward is or is not sound, strong or logical. For e.g., 'Saying we should increase our interest rates because everyone else is doing so will not hold water'.


Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
A.S. wæter; Dut. water, Ger. wasser; Gr. hydōr, L. udus, wet, unda, a wave, Sans. udan, water.


In literature:

Some will wash a wound with wine and water, but I hold it heats the blood about the wound and so increases the making of fresh humours.
"The Brook Kerith" by George Moore
The decayed leaves and twigs are so light and porous that they soak up most of the rain as it falls and hold the water indefinitely.
"The Young Wireless Operator--As a Fire Patrol" by Lewis E. Theiss
Water from above the anito holds (stops).
"The Tinguian" by Fay-Cooper Cole
Some lavers for holding water.
"A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Volume VII" by Robert Kerr
But it, too, surely needs to develop greater power to take in and hold water.
"The Library of Work and Play: Gardening and Farming." by Ellen Eddy Shaw
Immediately after the ship struck, she was sounded, and it was ascertained that there was four feet of water in the hold.
"Thrilling Stories Of The Ocean" by Marmaduke Park
The vegetables can be put in any container, so long as it holds water and is not made of metal.
"Every Step in Canning" by Grace Viall Gray
Little good resulted from this step; and then the water was started and the provisions thrown overboard out of the fore and aft holds.
"Narratives of Shipwrecks of the Royal Navy; between 1793 and 1849" by William O. S. Gilly
In very hot weather the same rules hold, to give less food, particularly less solid food, and more water.
"The Care and Feeding of Children" by L. Emmett Holt
The plate thus mended holds together admirably till it is put in hot water.
"Humanly Speaking" by Samuel McChord Crothers
Each blanket seems to hold about three gallons of water.
"Campaign Pictures of the War in South Africa (1899-1900)" by A. G. Hales
Are you ranchin' to hold down the water-hole for Corliss or to make a livin'?
"Sundown Slim" by Henry Hubert Knibbs
The pumps were not equal to the task of holding the water down to the safety line.
"Wit, Humor, Reason, Rhetoric, Prose, Poetry and Story Woven into Eight Popular Lectures" by George W. Bain
The reason why crops burn up so quickly on sandy soils during dry seasons is because of their weak power to hold water.
"The First Book of Farming" by Charles L. Goodrich
The water is pouring into the hold below my shop.
"Atlantis" by Gerhart Hauptmann
Hatches are all battened down, but I doubt if this tarpaulin holds water.
"Great Sea Stories" by Various
I visited a group of cottages, or rather huts, and received a present of a korna for holding water.
"Narrative of a Mission to Central Africa Performed in the Years 1850-51, Volume 2" by James Richardson
Five miles of water stretched in mad confusion, a solid whiteness of spouting foam that seemed to hold a hideous illumination.
"The Best Short Stories of 1921 and the Yearbook of the American Short Story" by Various
There she lay like a log, the water rushed into her hold, and every moment we expected she would go down.
"Will Weatherhelm" by W.H.G. Kingston
There were two new tin pannikins, and those would hold water.
"The Little Savage" by Captain Frederick Marryat

In poetry:

"Now when the rain comes, my waters roar,
And my spoils are sad to see,
For the earth-vaults where I kept my store,
Hold no surplus now for me.
"The Stream's Story" by Jared Barhite
The love I hold was borne by her;
And now, though far away,
My lonely spirit hears the stir
Of water round the starling spur
Beside the bridge at Grez.
"Know You The River Near To Grez" by Robert Louis Stevenson
Dark light still waters hold;
Broad silver moonpath trodden into gold:
Candle-flame glittering through the traveller's night--
Most comfortable light....
"Comfortable Light" by John Freeman
As water tumbled about the land in the night
Under the house; we felt how a great
Wave took hold of us, how the wings of the
Ship of time carried us on towards death.
"The Supper" by Martinus Nijhoff
THE spire is gone, that slept for centuries,
Mirrored among the lilies, calm and low:
And now the water holds but empty skies,
Through which the rivers of the thunder flow.
"The Fallen Spire [A Flemish Village]" by Herbert Ashley Asquith
Beyond the Rock and Spindle, where we watched the water clear
In the happy April sunshine, with a happy sound to hear,
There I sat this afternoon, but no hand was holding mine,
And the water sounded eerie, though the April sun did shine.
"Come Back to St Andrews" by Robert Fuller Murray

In news:

CSG Holdings, Inc paid $150,000 to resolve EPA claims that it allowed polluted stormwater and process water from its Columbia, N.H.
The caller reported he could see a person in the water holding on to the kayak.
Humidity, as well as water and oils from your sunscreen and the beach, actually enable lashes to hold up better.
Fairfax County voters approved a $30 million bond to build the proposed Huntington levee and pumping station to hold back the waters of Cameron Run.
Ramona Municipal Water District will hold a public hearing on the possible adoption of its fire mitigation fee and multi-year facilities and equipment plan at 2 pm on Aug 14.
State's waters hold creatures monstrous in looks, size.
STW Resources Holding Corp. (OTC QB: STWS), a water reclamation services company, announced it will commission its first oilfield -produced water processing pilot in the Permian Basin of West Texas.
The company's website says it holds interests in properties in Texas and Louisiana waters, including 854 wells on 155 platforms .
The Twin Platte Natural Resources District will hold two information sessions on the "water farm" project on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Burbank girls' water polo holds of La Canada.
In ponds where running water supplies oxygen and cooler temps, catfish generally hold in the deepest holes available.
You need to know your pond 's volume — how much water it actually holds.
Only a few feet from their back patio, a large koi pond holds 8,500 gallons of water and doubles as a reservoir in case of fire.
The project to replace a century-old water tank that holds the village's primary water supply moved forward this week.
Supervisors to weigh if boat tax changes will hold water.

In science:

When air holding water vapor rises and cools, some of the water condenses and releases heat, resulting in warmer air at a given altitude, and a lower lapse rate.
Climate Sensitivity and the Response of Temperature to CO$_2$
The same result holds true for a more general model with compound Poisson input flow but without water costs included.
Optimal control of a large dam, taking into account the water costs [New Edition]
Obviously, this is not always possible (we cannot transmute lead into gold, although we can transmute hydrogen plus oxygen into water), so we would like to be able to break up the universe of states into equivalence classes, inside each of which the hypothesis holds.
The Physics and Mathematics of the Second Law of Thermodynamics
The NUSEL geomicrobiology program is directly coupled to the geologic history, as isolated pockets of ancient water may hold the most surprising extremophiles.
Reference Design Project Book: NUSEL-Homestake
In the worse case, in which all 1.56 GJ of stored energy are deposited as heat in the water of the resistor, an ASME-coated vessel, holding 3100 l of water, will rise in temperature to a conservative design value of 150 degC at 0.48 MPa.
SiD Letter of Intent
If water can flow to the other side of RN, then the event H (η, RN, •) holds.
Noise Sensitivity in Continuum Percolation
Structural water drives self-assembly of organic rosette nanotubes and holds host atoms in the channel.
3DRISM Bridge Functional for the Aqueous Solutions of Carbon Nanomaterials