hold one's water

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hold one's water (third-person singular simple present holds one's water, present participle holding one's water, simple past and past participle held one's water)

  1. (physiology, dated) To restrain one's urge to urinate.
    • 1877, Shirley Bragg MD, "Structure of the Male Urethra, with Report of Cases," Atlanta Medical and Surgical Journal, Volume 14, pp. 645-6 (Google preview):
      [] and if there is much oozing of blood, the application of ice to the penis. The patient is then instructed to hold his water as long as possible.
  2. (idiomatic) To be patient; to control one's impulses.
    Hold your water, I'll get to you in a minute.
    • 2011, Thomas Swan, The Da Vinci Deception: An Inspector Jack Oxby Novel, →ISBN, ch. 1:
      "C'mon, move it! Get your ass in gear!" []
      "Hold your water!" Stiehl yelled back. "I'm writing farewell letters."


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