Definition of hold water in US English:

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