Hold phrasal verbs

In today’s lesson we are going to look at using the verb ‘to hold’ combined with particles. Here are some more of the most common expressions:

‘to hold back’ means to restrain or stop something working.

  • High rates of tax are holding back economic growth.
  • He could easily get promotion if he were more a team player. His attitude is holding him back.

‘to hold back’ can also mean to not say or do something.

  • I wanted to tell him but something held me back.
  • Although she didn’t agree, she held back and didn’t say anything.

‘to hold down’ means to stop something increasing.

  • Government is trying to hold down public spending.
  • We have to hold down costs if we want to increase our margins.

‘to hold down’ also means to keep a job even if it is difficult.

  • There are lots of women who hold down high powered jobs and have children.
  • She was holding down a very responsible position when she was only twenty-three.

‘to hold off’ means to delay doing something or delay making a decision about it.

  • That house won’t be on the market very long. Don’t hold ;off making an offer.
  • You can’t hold off much longer, you have to give him an answer.

‘to hold on’ means to wait for a short time.

  • Let’s see if he arrives. We can hold on a couple of minutes.
  • We can’t hold on much longer, we’re going to miss the train. We’ll have to go without him.

‘to hold on’ is used frequently on the phone to ask people to wait a few moments.

  • I’ll just check that for you if you’d like to hold on.
  • Could you hold on please while I see if he’s available?

‘to hold out’ means to put something in front of you.

  • He was very formal. He held out his hand for me to shake it.
  • She held out her glass so that I could refill it.

‘to hold out for’ means to wait for what you want and not accept less.

  • They were on strike for a long time. Holding out for a 10% increase in salary.
  • I think we should hold out for a better price. House prices are beginning to rise again.

‘to hold up’ means to delay something.

  • The construction was held up by bad weather.
  • Jim was late again. He got held up in heavy traffic on the motorway.


exercise 2

exercise 3

10 thoughts on “Hold phrasal verbs”

  1. hi
    thank you for lessons that they are very useful for me and i am sure it helps others too.i am very happy because i have a good friend like you.

  2. words are not enough to express my sincere gratitude with this lesson. God bless and increase you in knowledge.

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