hold off

verb
held off; holding off; holds off

Definition of hold off

transitive verb

1 : to block from an objective : delay
2 : to defer action on : postpone hold off a decision
3 : to fight to a standoff : withstand

intransitive verb

: to defer or temporarily stop doing something

Examples of hold off in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The show gathers a dozen of the massive sailing trophies commissioned by the New York real-estate magnate Ogden Goelet (1851–1897) for New York Yacht Club races held off the coast of Newport in the 1880s and 1890s. Brian T. Allen, National Review, "Silver Sailing Cups Recall Gilded Age Glamour and Sexuality," 29 June 2019 Other measures of market sentiment remain buoyant: The S&P 500 on Thursday notched its first record close since April, reflecting expectations that Federal Reserve rate cuts later in 2019 will hold off a downturn. Sam Goldfarb, WSJ, "Bond-Yield Plunge Confounds the World’s Economy," 23 June 2019 Down a man, Rising held off Energy while being out-shot on goal, 19-14. The Arizona Republic, azcentral, "Red-hot Phoenix Rising FC beat OKC Energy FC, win seventh straight," 22 June 2019 Then, with the bases loaded, LSU seemed to have an impressive double play opportunity to hold off the run. Brody Miller, nola.com, "LSU baseball season ends with mistake-filled 5-4 loss to Florida State," 9 June 2019 House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, however, has opted to hold off on such proceedings. oregonlive.com, "Americans say a president should be subject to criminal charges, but Donald Trump still shouldn’t be impeached: poll," 19 June 2019 Senator Elizabeth Warren and Representatives Ayanna Pressley, Seth Moulton, and Jim McGovern have called on the House to at least begin an impeachment inquiry, while the rest of the delegation has held off. Christina Prignano, BostonGlobe.com, "Most Mass. voters don’t like Trump. But nearly half don’t support impeachment, poll finds," 11 June 2019 Skin Care suggests holding off on getting busy post-wax for at least 24 hours. Amber Katz, Glamour, "12 Things Your Bikini Waxer Wants You to Know," 24 Mar. 2019 Forces backed by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have been trying to capture the city for months, but have been held off by rebels dug in on its outskirts, with neither side willing to back down. Brian Rohan, The Seattle Times, "Expectations low as Yemen’s warring parties meet for talks," 4 Dec. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'hold off.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of hold off

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

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Statistics for hold off

Last Updated

10 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for hold off

The first known use of hold off was in the 15th century

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with hold off

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