Maintain Main*tain, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Maintained}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Maintaining}.] [OE. maintenen, F. maintenir, properly, to hold by the hand; main hand (L. manus) + F. tenir to hold (L. tenere). See {Manual}, and Tenable.] 1. To hold or keep in any particular state or condition; to support; to sustain; to uphold; to keep up; not to suffer to fail or decline; as, to maintain a certain degree of heat in a furnace; to maintain a fence or a railroad; to maintain the digestive process or powers of the stomach; to maintain the fertility of soil; to maintain present reputation. [1913 Webster]

2. To keep possession of; to hold and defend; not to surrender or relinquish. [1913 Webster]

God values . . . every one as he maintains his post. --Grew. [1913 Webster]

3. To continue; not to suffer to cease or fail. [1913 Webster]

Maintain talk with the duke. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

4. To bear the expense of; to support; to keep up; to supply with what is needed. [1913 Webster]

Glad, by his labor, to maintain his life. --Stirling. [1913 Webster]

What maintains one vice would bring up two children. --Franklin. [1913 Webster]

5. To affirm; to support or defend by argument. [1913 Webster]

It is hard to maintain the truth, but much harder to be maintained by it. --South. [1913 Webster]

Syn: To assert; vindicate; allege. See {Assert}. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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