I. noun Date: 15th century 1. a. land held especially by a vassal or tenant b. property (as land or securities) owned — usually used in plural 2. a ruling of a court especially on an issue of law raised in a case — compare dictum 3. something that holds II. adjective Date: 1568 1. having the effect of holding back or delaying something <
the [war] represented a holding action against the spread of world Communism — Sidney Offit
2. intended for usually temporary storage or retention <
a holding tank

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.

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