Definition of hold water in English:

hold water

See synonyms for hold water


  • often with negative (of a statement, theory, or line of reasoning) appear to be valid, sound, or reasonable.

    ‘this argument just does not hold water’
    • ‘I have proved that your statements don't hold water.’
    • ‘The theory that does not hold water with me is that cannabis leads on to harder drugs.’
    • ‘The explanation given last night does not, on reflection, appear to hold water.’
    • ‘Historically, the theory of collective guilt does not hold water.’
    • ‘But I don't know enough about the public health statistics to know whether this objection actually holds water.’
    • ‘This interpretation holds water, but it doesn't account for the poetry, the hilarity, and the glimmers of hope that underpin the film.’
    • ‘This subject has come up before - I just don't think it holds water.’
    • ‘A quick examination shows that none of these explanations holds water.’
    • ‘As far as I'm concerned my argument completely holds water.’
    • ‘In other words, their excuse does not hold water!’
    be tenable, ring true, bear examination, bear scrutiny, survive investigation, make sense, work out, stand up, hold up, be convincing, be plausible, be verifiable, be provable, be sound
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