Now, Words and Their Stories, a VOA Special English program about American expressions.
I'm Rich Kleinfeldt with expressions made using the word "hold."
"Can't hold a candle to" is a popular expression. It is from the time before electricity, when people used candles for light. Someone who lived in a big house would have a servant light his way by holding a candle. The expression meant that the person who cannot hold a candle to you is not fit even to be your servant. Now, it means such a person cannot compare or compete. In the following song, singer Dolly Parton tells her new love that her old flames, her old lovers, cannot compare with him...
Another expression is "hold your tongue." It means to be still and not talk. "Hold your tongue" is not something you would tell a friend. But a parent or teacher might use the expression to quiet a noisy child.
"Hold out" is an expression one hears often in sports reports and labor news. It means to refuse to play or work. Professional football and baseball players "hold out" if their team refuses to pay them what they think they are worth. Members of labor unions "hold out" and refuse to work until they get the work agreement they want.
The expression "hold up" has several different meanings. One is a robbery. A man with a gun may say, "This is a hold up. Give me your money." Another meaning is to delay. A driver late for work may tell his boss, "I was held up by heavy traffic." Someone who was robbed on the way to work might say, "Sorry, boss, I was held up by a hold up."
Still another meaning of the expression is for a story to be considered true after an investigation. The same driver late for work could say, "My boss did not believe a hold up held me up. But the police confirmed what I said, so my story held up."
"Hold on" is another expression. Often it means wait or stop. As you leave for school, your brother may say, "Hold on, you forgot your book."
Our final expression is "hold the line." That means to keep a problem or situation from getting worse -- to hold steady. For example, the president may say he will "hold the line on taxes." He means there will be no increase in taxes.
Now, I must "hold the line" on this program -- I have no more time left today.
This VOA Special English program Words and Their Stories was written by Frank Beardsley.
I'm Rich Kleinfeldt.
1.tongue n.舌头, 语言, 口才, 舌状物
The dog’s tongue was hanging out.
Ana used to be my flame.
1.Another expression is "hold your tongue." It means to be still and not talk.
hold your tongue 保持缄默
Hold your tongue, you disrespectful old bird!
Why do you keep chiming in? Hold your tongue!
2.The expression "hold up" has several different meanings.
hold up 举起；阻挡；拦截
Mills have iron pillars all over the place holding up the roof.
Why were you holding everyone up?
Can't hold a candle to（比不上，还不如）是个常用表达，来自尚未用电的时代，那时人们点蜡烛来照明。住在大宅子里的人会有仆人手持蜡烛引路，这个表达的意思是，连蜡烛都拿不好的人是不适合做仆人的 。今天，这个成语是说某人无法与人比较或竞争 。在下面的这首歌里，歌手多莉·帕顿告诉新欢，她的旧爱远比不上他 。
另一个表达是hold your tongue，意思是安静别说话。hold your tongue这个词语不适合对朋友说 。但父母或老师要求吵闹的孩子安静下来就会这么说 。
Hold out是体育报道或劳工新闻中常见的表达，意思是罢工。如果职业足球或棒球球员认为球队给自己的薪水不值得，就会罢工 。工会成员如果得不到想要的工作协议，也会罢工，拒绝工作 。
hold up有好几种意思，一个是抢劫，持枪男子会说，“抢劫，拿钱来！”另一个意思是拖延，开车上班迟到的人会告诉老板，“路上堵车耽误了。”上班路上被劫的人会说，“我被抢劫了，所以路上耽误了 。”
Hold on是另一个表达，通常意思是等待或停止。你哥哥会在你要上学的时候说，“等下，你忘了带书本了 。”
最后一个表达是hold the line，意思是不让问题或情况恶化，保持稳定。比如，总统会说保持税收稳定，意思是不会增税 。