hold one's own
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hold (one's) own
To be able to do something with a sufficient level of skill or as well as others can. Don't you worry about me—I've been playing basketball since I was a kid and can hold my own against you bums.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
hold one's own
Do reasonably well despite opposition, competition, or criticism. For example, The team held its own against their opponents, or Rumors often hold their own against facts. [First half of 1300s]
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 one's own, to
To stand one’s ground successfully against attack, competition, or some other pressure. The own here refers to position or advantage. In use since the sixteenth century, the expression was a cliché by the nineteenth century. It appears in a famous speech by Winston Churchill in 1942, during World War II: “Let me, however, make this clear. . . . We mean to hold our own. I have not become the King’s First Minister in order to preside over the liquidation of the British Empire.” An alternate synonym is to hold one’s ground. James Patterson used it in his thriller, London Bridges (2004), in a response to a bomb thrown at a building: “A decision had been made not to abandon the building, to hold our ground.”
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer