To hold water

Also found in: Idioms.
See under Hold, v. t.

See also: Water

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary, published 1913 by G. & C. Merriam Co.
References in classic literature ?
Finch had come to the meeting uninvited, and she squeaked out, "We don't build nests to hold water, but to hold eggs," and then the thrushes stopped cheering, and Solomon was so perplexed that he took several sips of water.
There were also vessels of willow and grass, so closely wrought as to hold water, and a seine neatly made with meshes, in the ordinary manner, of the fibres of wild flax or nettle.
LAHORE -- An Indian delegation led by Indus Water Commissioner PK Saxena is reaching Lahore today to hold water talks with Pakistani officials.
He believes, however, that the fundamental concerns he's heard from investors "don't seem to hold water." Raymond highlights the "impressiveness of these data in the context of other options" and the "significant stock re-rating potential that remains as we move closer to full aducanumab P3 data in 2020." The analyst tells investors to buy Biogen shares on today's selloff.
It described the portion that collapsed as a "saddle dam", which is an auxiliary dam used to hold water beyond what is held by the main dam.
The declaration noted the intention of the Government of Tajikistan to hold Water Action Decade Conferences in Dushanbe on a biennial basis and to keep organizing them in an open and inclusive manner and invite all states, the United Nations, including UN-Water, and other relevant stakeholders, to actively participate in this Dushanbe Process.
Dr Bradley said: "The message we have to get across is that to stop flooding downstream, you have to hold water at source."
A high-level Pakistani delegation arrived in Washing-ton on Sunday for the three-day talks, which would cover four key points: the height of the Kishan-ganga dam, its capacity to hold water, Pakistan's demand for setting up a court of arbitration to settle the dispute, and India's counter-demand for an international expert.
The government started emptying two other dams at the Patel farm - Marigu and Milmet - after it emerged that their earthen walls were too weak to hold water.
The scheme, which would use money from European Union farming subsidies earmarked for improving the environment and countryside, could see grants paid to turn fields into woodland or to build on-farm reservoirs or small dams to hold water.
ATTEMPTS to convince motorists that this winter's flooded roads are a one-off event are failing to hold water with most drivers, according to a survey.