← French Vocab Builder

tenir

English translation of tenir

hold

The French word 'tenir' means 'to hold' in English. It can be used in many contexts just as in English, such as to hold something concrete like a book (Je tiens un livre) or to hold onto something in a figurative sense, like to hold a position (Il tient la position de président). 'Tenir' is a common verb and follows a regular conjugation pattern.


Example sentences using: tenir

Je vais tenir la porte pour vous.

English translation of Je vais tenir la porte pour vous.

I am going to hold the door for you.

This phrase uses 'tenir' in a physical context, where one person is holding an object (in this case a door) for another person.

Tu devrais tenir ta promesse.

English translation of Tu devrais tenir ta promesse.

You should keep your promise.

Here 'tenir' is used metaphorically to mean 'keep' or 'uphold'. It suggests that the person is expected to fulfill or maintain something they have previously committed to.

Il sait comment tenir un secret.

English translation of Il sait comment tenir un secret.

He knows how to keep a secret.

This phrase also deals with the metaphorical meaning of 'tenir', indicating the ability of a person to hold or keep a secret without revealing it.

Elle a su tenir son rôle à merveille.

English translation of Elle a su tenir son rôle à merveille.

She managed to play her role wonderfully.

In this case, 'tenir' translates as 'play' related to acting or performing a role, showcasing another versatile use of the word.

Nous devons tenir compte de tous les faits.

English translation of Nous devons tenir compte de tous les faits.

We must take into account all the facts.

'Tenir compte de' is a French phrase which means to consider or to take into account something.

Vous devez tenir votre parole.

English translation of Vous devez tenir votre parole.

You must keep your word.

Similar to an earlier example, this uses 'tenir' in the sense of keeping or upholding something, in this case an assurance or pledge that has been given.

Ils savent tenir leurs langues.

English translation of Ils savent tenir leurs langues.

They know how to hold their tongues.

'Tenir sa langue' is a common French idiomatic phrase meaning to remain silent or keep one's mouth shut, showing the figurative usage of 'tenir'.

Je tiens à toi.

English translation of Je tiens à toi.

I care about you.

'Tenir à' is a French expression denoting emotional attachment or care for someone. It is a figurative or emotional use of 'tenir'.

Je peux tenir la boutique en votre absence.

English translation of Je peux tenir la boutique en votre absence.

I can hold the shop in your absence.

In this phrase, 'tenir' is used more literally to mean holding or taking care of something, in this case a shop.

Je tiens à vous remercier pour votre aide.

English translation of Je tiens à vous remercier pour votre aide.

I want to thank you for your help.

Here, 'tiens à' is used to express a desire or intention, in this case to thank someone. This shows that 'tenir' can also be employed to convey eagerness or intent.

Made with JoyBird
True