Hold One's Peace Meaning
(idiomatic) To refrain from speaking; to be silent.
Example: c. 1595, William Shakespeare, Two Gentlemen of Verona, act 5, sc. 2:
Thurio: How likes she my discourse?
Proteus: Ill, when you talk of war.
Thurio: But well, when I discourse of love and peace?
Julia: [Aside] But better, indeed, when you hold your peace.
1611, Bible (KJV), Psalms 39:2:
I was dumb with silence,
I held my peace . . .
1728, Jonathan Swift, "A Dialogue between Mad Mullinix and Timothy":
Ne'er hold my peace, and ne'er stand still:
I fart with twenty ladies by;
They call me beast; and what care I?
1860 Feb. 25, G. W. S., "Letter to Editor: Country Clergymen and Matrimony," New York Times (retrieved 3 Oct 2013):
[U]nless he can give better arguments than he has given to show the truth of his observations, it would be well for him to hold his peace.
1937 April 2, "The Presidency: Economic Dissertation," Time (retrieved 3 Oct 2013):
Washington was still waiting last week for Franklin Roosevelt to say or do something about Sit-Down. . . . But if he held his peace on one topic, he spoke out boldly on another.
2006 Oct. 25, "Farming supermarket 'victims' urged to speak out," The Scotsman (Scotland) (retrieved 3 Oct 2013):
Supermarket suppliers with a grievance have been urged to speak up soon or forever hold their peace.