keep down

Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.

keep down

1. To remain in a lowered or crouched position. Keep down so the guards don't spot you!
2. To maintain something in a lowered position. Just make sure you keep down the umbrella if it starts to get windy. I like to keep the top down on my convertible even when it gets a little cold.
3. To ensure that something cannot move from its position, typically by placing something on top of it or by attaching it to something. I have a nice heavy paperweight that keeps my papers down when a breeze comes through the office We'll need to use some strong tape to keep this panel down.
4. To suppress someone's potential or prevent them from improving, advancing, etc. I feel like my boss has really been keeping me down by not letting me sit in on these meetings. Don't let setbacks like this keep you down—you have to keep trying.
5. To maintain at a low level or prevent from increasing. The board hopes to keep down tuition rates to stay competitive with other schools. Please keep your voices down during the ceremony.
6. To avoid vomiting after one has eaten when one is ill, especially with a stomach ailment. I haven't been able to keep any solids down since Tuesday, but I've been drinking plenty of fluids. Do you think you could keep down some soup?
7. To restrain or repress some emotion or emotional reaction. A noun or pronoun can be used between "keep" and "down." I tried to keep down my urge to cry as my big brother got on the train for college. I was trying to keep my frustration down, but everything the boss said during the meeting was totally inaccurate.
See also: down, keep

keep it down

To be quiet or stop making a lot of noise; to maintain a low level of noise. Often used as an imperative. Can you guys keep it down? I'm trying to sleep. Keep it down before the neighbors call the police!
See also: down, keep
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

keep someone or something down

to hold someone or something in a hidden or protected position. Try to keep Sam down where no one can see him. Please keep the noise down so Fred won't know it's a party when he comes in.
See also: down, keep

keep someone down

to prevent someone from advancing or succeeding. His lack of a degree will keep him down. I don't think that this problem will keep her down.
See also: down, keep

keep something down

1. Lit. to make the level of noise lower and keep it lower. Please keep it down. You are just too noisy. Keep the noise down, or I will call the police.
2. Fig. to retain food in one's stomach rather than throwing it up. I've got the flu and I can't keep any food down. She couldn't keep the milk down.
3. Fig. to keep spending under control. I work hard to keep expenses down. Please try to keep the cost of the new project down.
See also: down, keep

keep it down (to a dull roar)

Fig. to keep quiet or as quiet as possible. Keep it down, you kids! Please try to keep it down to a dull roar, could you?
See also: down, keep
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

keep down

1. Hold under control, repress; also, retain food. For example, Keep you voice down, or They vowed to keep down the insurgency, or With morning sickness, she had a hard time keeping down her breakfast. [Late 1500s]
2. Prevent from increasing or succeeding, as in The government was determined to keep prices down, or Joyce felt that her lack of an advanced degree kept her down in terms of promotions. [Early 1800s]
See also: down, keep
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.

keep down

1. To remain in a lower position: We heard gunfire overhead, so we kept down for a while.
2. To cause something to remain in a lower position: I keep the blinds down in my apartment during the summer. We kept down the shades so no one would see.
3. To prevent something from growing, accomplishing, or succeeding: These unfair wages are keeping people like us down. The new policies are keeping down the poor.
4. To hold something under control or at a reduced level: Keep your voice down, or you'll wake the baby. Keep down the noise, or you'll have to leave.
5. To refrain from vomiting something: Although I was seasick, I managed to keep my food down. The patient kept down the medicine.
See also: down, keep
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.
See also:
References in periodicals archive ?
Additional watering was ordered on middle Sunday, and the Centre Court roof again kept closed until 4pm to keep down the temperature and relieve the stress on the grass.
DwR Cymru Welsh Water, has announced that PS32m - the equivalent to dividends paid to shareholders in other companies - will be used for investment projects They will use the money to provide additional financial support for those customers struggling to pay their bills; invest in renewable energy generation schemes to cut carbon emissions and to help keep down future customer bills and target improvements for areas suffering repeat problems with their water supply.
My mother screamed "what did you do that for?" and he replied "keep down!, keep down!" and there followed the rat-a-tat-tat of a German plane's machine-gun.
The Seasiders'' closest call arrived in the second stanza when Darren Gowans'' volley came back off the post and Dean Seager was unable to keep down the rebound.
I spray my lawn to keep down all the weeds, my neighbour cultivates tall-stemmed yellow flowers which produce a glorious "clock" of fluffy wind blown seeds in no time.
SQUEAMISH Timmy Mallett struggled to keep down a "penis colada" as he was dumped out of I'm A Celebrity.
The difference, of course, is that it is hard to intensively rear cattle to keep down the cost whereas chickens can be packed into a small space and their growth accelerated.
Host governments in the name of a "laissez-faire" market will fall over themselves to provide state grants/subsidies, land/raw materials, infrastructure (rail, roads etc), purpose-built factories, plant and machinery, a compliant, well-trained and flexible workforce, a police force/army to keep down dissidents etc.
It can often be fatal for the elderly because it causes severe de hydration and sufferers are often unable to keep down food or water for days.
MARK JOHNSTON is hard to keep down at present and, little more than an hour after Sir George Turner's Dante flop, he was back in the winner's circle, courtesy of Royal Beacon, who booked his Royal Ascot ticket with a workmanlike success in the six-furlong juvenile maiden.
Physicists chose this innovative design to keep down the cost of the new $115 million accelerator and to demonstrate the feasibility of such a scheme for accelerating and colliding particles at high energies.
I HAVE some fir trees cut and chipped and was thinking of using them to help keep down weeds around my roses.
We are now hearing stories of hard-up families huddling together in beds early in the night in a bid to keep down costs.
MANY people in Coventry, Nuneaton and Bedworth have taken advantage of our free neutering service and this has helped to keep down the number of unwanted kittens in the area.
Hoe to keep down weeds, and water well in dry summer spells.