What does uphold mean?

Definitions for uphold

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word uphold.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. continue, uphold, carry on, bear on, preserveverb

    keep or maintain in unaltered condition; cause to remain or last

    "preserve the peace in the family"; "continue the family tradition"; "Carry on the old traditions"

  2. upholdverb

    stand up for; stick up for; of causes, principles, or ideals

  3. uphold, maintainverb

    support against an opponent

    "The appellate court upheld the verdict"


  1. upholdverb

    To hold up; to lift on high; to elevate.

  2. upholdverb

    To keep erect; to support; to sustain; to keep from falling; to maintain.

  3. upholdverb

    To support by approval or encouragement.

  4. Etymology: From upholden, equivalent to. Compare ophouden, aufhalten.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. To Upholdverb

    preter. upheld; and part. pass. upheld, and upholden.

    Etymology: up and hold.

    The mournful train with groans and hands upheld,
    Besought his pity. Dryden.

    While life upholds this arm,
    This arm upholds the house of Lancaster. William Shakespeare.

    This great man found no means to continue and uphold his ill-purchased greatness, but by rejecting the English law, and assuming, in lieu thereof, the barbarous customs of the Irish. John Davies, Ireland.

    Poetry and painting were upheld by the strength of imagination. John Dryden, Dufresnoy.

    There is due from the judge to the advocate some commendation, where causes are fair pleaded; for that upholds in the client the reputation of his council, and beats down in him the conceit of his cause. Francis Bacon.

    Never was a time, when the interposition of the magistrate was more necessary, to secure the honour of religion, and uphold the authority of those great principles, by which his own authority is best upheld. Francis Atterbury.

    Many younger brothers have neither lands nor means to uphold themselves. Walter Raleigh.

    Divers, although peradventure not willing to be yoked with elderships, yet were contented to uphold opposition against bishops, not without greater hurt to the course of their whole proceedings. Richard Hooker.

    In spite of spite, alone upholds the day. William Shakespeare.

    A deaf person, by observing the motions of another man’s mouth, knows what he says, and upholds a current communication of discourse with him. William Holder.

    As Nebuchodnosor liveth, who hath sent thee for the upholding of every living thing. Judith xi. 7.

    A due proportion is held betwixt the parts, as well in the natural body of man, as the body politick of the state, for the upholding of the whole. George Hakewill.


  1. uphold

    Uphold is a verb which means to support, maintain or defend a principle, law or custom. It often involves preserving traditions, values, justice or rights, and sometimes implies adhering to them even if they are challenged or under threat. Uphold can also mean to confirm or ratify a decision in a legal context.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Upholdverb

    to hold up; to lift on high; to elevate

  2. Upholdverb

    to keep erect; to support; to sustain; to keep from falling; to maintain

  3. Upholdverb

    to aid by approval or encouragement; to countenance; as, to uphold a person in wrongdoing

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Uphold

    up-hōld′, v.t. to hold up: to sustain: to countenance: to defend: to continue without failing.—n. Uphōl′der.—v.t. Uphōl′ster, to furnish furniture with stuffing, springs, &c., to provide with curtains, &c.—ns. Uphōl′sterer, one who supplies or who sells furniture, beds, curtains, &c.; Uphōl′stery, furniture, &c., supplied by upholsterers.

Surnames Frequency by Census Records


    According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Uphold is ranked #30946 in terms of the most common surnames in America.

    The Uphold surname appeared 751 times in the 2010 census and if you were to sample 100,000 people in the United States, approximately 0 would have the surname Uphold.

    97.3% or 731 total occurrences were White.
    1.2% or 9 total occurrences were of two or more races.
    1% or 8 total occurrences were of Hispanic origin.

Matched Categories

Anagrams for uphold »

  1. hold up

  2. hold-up

  3. holdup

How to pronounce uphold?

How to say uphold in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of uphold in Chaldean Numerology is: 6

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of uphold in Pythagorean Numerology is: 4

Examples of uphold in a Sentence

  1. Clifford Villanueva Villalon:

    Do what is right. Uphold what is right. Recite your prayer every night. Handle everything with care. Acknowledge everybody's help. Make good memories of yourself to everybody.

  2. Kim Davis:

    My Kentucky constitution that I took the oath to uphold in January stated that marriage is between one man and one woman. And that is the constitution that I have vowed to uphold, this is a much bigger battle than one small county or two small counties that are standing up for what they believe in.

  3. Assassins creed rogue Shay patric Cormac:

    Uphold the principles of our order and all that for which we stand, never share our secrets nor divulge the true nature of our work. Do so, until death - whatever the cost. This is my new creed. I am Shay Patrick Cormac, Templar of the Colonial... of the American rite. I am an older man now, and perhaps wiser. A war and a revolution have ended, and another is about to begin. May the father of understanding guide us all.

  4. Jim Pasco:

    It's bigger than just him. All police officers take an oath to uphold the law and no one is happy or anything other than disappointed when someone fails to uphold that oath.

  5. Robert Bentley:

    I have to uphold not only the constitution of Alabama, but I swore to uphold the constitution of the United States and we will uphold the law of the United States. I will uphold the law of the nation and this is now the law.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for uphold

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

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"uphold." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 28 Sep. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/uphold>.

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    restoring confidence and relieving anxiety
    • A. tight
    • B. reassuring
    • C. cosmopolitan
    • D. handsome

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