keep to (something or oneself)(redirected from keep to themselves)
keep to (something or oneself)
1. To adhere to something, such as a plan or a rule; to stick to something. Please keep to the plan, and everything will go smoothly. How can I trust you if you never keep to your promises?
2. To stay somewhere or to not go away or far from somewhere, typically because of some restriction. Keep the front yard, kids—I don't want to see you running in the street. The princess hated that she always had to keep to the castle.
3. To refrain from attempting to communicate or make connections with others. If you want to make friends, you can't keep to yourself all the time. Start meeting people! The old man down the streets always keeps to himself. I just realized I don't even know his name.
keep to something
to adhere to an agreement; to follow a plan; to keep a promise. Please keep to the agreed-upon plan. Can you keep to what we agreed on?
keep something to oneself
to keep something a secret. I want you to keep this news to yourself. This should be kept to yourself.
keep to oneself
to be solitary; to stay away from other people. Ann tends to keep to herself. She doesn't have many friends. I try to keep to myself each morning so I can get some work done.
1. Adhere to, conform to, as in Let's keep to the original purpose of this will. [Early 1600s]
2. Confine oneself to, as in Whenever she didn't feel well, she kept to her bed. Also see keep to oneself.
keep to oneself
1. Also, keep oneself to oneself. Shun the company of others, value one's privacy, as in She kept to herself all morning, or, as Doris Lessing put it in In Pursuit of the English (1960): "She keeps herself to herself so much." [Late 1600s]
2. Refrain from revealing, hold secret, as in He promised to keep the news to himself. Also see the synonym keep under one's hat.
1. To refrain from venturing away from some place or activity: Because of the rain, the kids mostly kept to their rooms.
2. To adhere to some plan; stick with something: We should ignore these new projects and keep to the original purpose of our organization.
3. To remain private, unsociable, or uncommunicative. Used reflexively: The people at the party were not very friendly, so I kept to myself.
keep to (oneself)
1. To shun the company of others: She kept to herself all morning.
2. To refrain from divulging: He kept the news to himself.