hold down

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hold down

1. To physically restrain someone or something against a surface, typically a horizontal one, such as the ground. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "hold" and "down." As a kid, I hated getting shots so much that a nurse usually had to hold me down. Hold down those papers so they don't blow away.
2. To maintain something, often a job. He's never been able to hold down a job, so he'll probably be fired within a week.
3. To limit something. Can you please get the kids to hold down the screaming while I'm on the phone?
4. To be able to digest food without vomiting. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "hold" and "down." I'm surprised that I was able to hold down that disgusting dinner.
5. To limit or restrict someone. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "hold" and "back." Your fears are really holding you down in life. Your relationship is so dysfunctional, though. You guys are really holding each other down.
See also: down, hold
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

hold down

1. Also, keep down. Limit, restrain, as in Please hold down the noise. [First half of 1500s] Also see keep down.
2. Work at or discharge one's duties satisfactorily, as in He managed to hold down two jobs at the same time. [Colloquial; 1800s]
See also: down, hold
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

hold down

v.
1. To push down on something to prevent it from moving or shifting: Hold down the rug while we move the furniture. I held the clothes down so the suitcase would close.
2. To prevent someone or something from advancing: Once that team gets going, you can't hold them down. Don't hold down everyone else just because you're tired.
3. To limit the amount or level of something: Please hold the noise down. Hold down the music.
4. To keep a job for an extended period of time: My cousin can't seem to hold down a job for more than a few months. If I could hold a job down, I wouldn't be broke.
5. To digest food successfully: I'm so sick, I haven't been able to hold down anything. If you eat slowly, maybe you can hold your food down.
See also: down, hold
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Phrasal Verbs. Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Increases in consumer prices were held down in March and April by sizable declines in energy prices and a small net reduction in food prices.
The appreciation of the dollar undoubtedly had helped to damp domestic inflation this year, and reported increases in consumer prices also had been held down to a marginal extent by an ongoing series of technical adjustments to the consumer price index.
Using normal gasket material and a 3-D groove line, piece parts can be most effectively held down by vacuum.
Officers discovered a man being held down by the woman and her friend in the back of the apartment.
In the second quarter, sales were once again held down noticeably by strike-related supply constraints, as well as by some payback from the elevated first-quarter pace.
Within services, weather conditions held down growth of real outlays for energy services in the first quarter and boosted them in the second.
Price increases were damped last year by falling oil prices, near-stable prices for non-oil imports, and a further rise in labor productivity, which held down production costs in the domestic economy.
Net expenditures for deposit insurance, which had been slightly positive in 1992, were negative in fiscal 1993, held down in part by delays in funding the activities of the Resolution Trust Corporation.
The downturn in economic activity, which reduced desired inventory levels and business capital spending, together with a relatively low level of merger activity, held down the need for funds.
Despite the continuing shrinkage of the thrift industry, however, the pace of residential lending by banks slowed as sluggish economic growth held down the demand for housing.
The resulting rise in the unemployment rate, though, was damped relative to that during earlier contractions, as unusually slow growth of the labor force held down the number of job seekers; the unemployment rate in June of this year, 7 percent, was about 3A percentage point below the average jobless rate at the end of previous recessions.
On the revenue side, federal tax receipts have been held down by the anemic growth of nominal income since last fall; indeed, personal income tax payments so far this fiscal year are little changed from the payments made during the same period a year earlier.
Last year, elevated loan loss provisions, concentrated at banks with substantial exposure to commercial real estate loans, held down the industry's return on assets to 0.50 percent, the second lowest level since the late 1940s (chart 1), and its return on equity to 7.77 percent.
The decline in economic activity held down the demand for loans to finance both working capital and business investment and reduced the demand for merger-related financing.
Overall, net charge-offs of construction and land development loans noticeably held down growth of this category in the fourth quarter of 1989.