Green’s Dictionary of Slang

hold v.1

(US drugs)

1. [late 19C+] to be in possession of money, usu. large sums; often as holding.

2. [1930s–60s] for a supply of drugs to suffice an addict for a given period of time.

3. [1930s+] to be in possession of drugs, esp. for selling.

4. [1960s–70s] (US black) to borrow.

5. [1970s–80s] (UK black) to take, to steal.

6. [1970s+] (US Und.) to be armed.

7. [1970s+] to be in possession of anything.

In phrases

do you hold?

[late 19C] (Aus.) a phr. indicating that it is someone’s turn to buy the drinks.

hold heavy (v.) [heavy adv. (3)]

[20C+] to have a good deal of money .

hold light (v.)

[20C+] to have only a little money, to be out of pocket.

SE in slang uses

In compounds

hold-door trade (n.) [whores standing around brothel doorways in the hope of attracting passing trade]

[late 16C–early 17C] the world of prostitution.

In phrases

hold... (v.)

see also under relevant n.

hold a fresh (v.)

[1990s+] (W.I.) to take a shower.

hold a tangi (v.) [Maori tangi, a formal lamentation, a dirge]

[1940s] (N.Z.) to analyse, to hold a ‘post mortem’, to have a feast or party.

hold foot (v.)

[20C+] (Ulster) to sustain, fig. to keep up with.

hold out

see separate entries.

hold over someone (v.)

[mid–late 19C] (US) to have an advantage over someone.

hold the bag (v.)

see separate entry.

hold up

see separate entries.

In exclamations

hold it!

see separate entry.

hold tight! [orig. a bus- or tram-driver’s shout]

1. [1910s+] stop! don’t move!

2. [1960s+] (W.I.) calm down!

hold your kitties!

[20C+] be patient! remain calm!