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[hohld-out] /ˈhoʊldˌaʊt/
an act or instance of holding out.
a person who delays signing a contract in hopes of gaining more favorable terms:
The basketball star was a holdout until they offered more money.
a person who declines to participate, cooperate, agree, etc.:
Aside from one or two holdouts, everyone contributed.
Origin of holdout
1890-95; noun use of verb phrase hold out Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for holdout
  • Oddly, the business community was the last holdout against the marketplace approach.
  • They were the only holdout that refused to sign on to the agreement.
  • Collective-action clauses are designed to address the problem of holdout creditors in a restructuring negotiation.
  • holdout jurors, who disagree with the majority, faced psychological pressure from their peers.
British Dictionary definitions for holdout

hold out

verb (adverb)
(transitive) to offer or present
(intransitive) to last or endure
(intransitive) to continue to resist or stand firm, as a city under siege or a person refusing to succumb to persuasion
(mainly US) to withhold (something due or expected)
hold out for, to wait patiently or uncompromisingly for (the fulfilment of one's demands)
(informal) hold out on, to delay in or keep from telling (a person) some new or important information
noun (US)
a person, country, organization, etc, that continues to resist or refuses to change: Honecker was one of the staunchest holdouts against reform
a person, country, organization, etc, that declines to cooperate or participate: they remain the only holdouts to signing the accord
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Slang definitions & phrases for holdout


  1. A person, esp a professional athlete, who refuses to sign a contract until the salary is raised (1911+)
  2. A person who refuses to agree to something: coerce reluctant hold-outs into ''kicking in'' (1940s+)
  3. A playing card sneakily kept from the deck by the dealer (1894+ Gambling)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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