To keep counsel
Counsel Coun"sel (koun"s[e^]l), n. [OE. conseil, F. conseil, fr. L. consilium, fr. the root of consulere to consult, of uncertain origin. Cf. {Consult}, {Consul}.] 1. Interchange of opinions; mutual advising; consultation. [1913 Webster]

All the chief priest and elders of the people took counsel against Jesus, to put him to death. --Matt. xxvii. 1. [1913 Webster]

2. Examination of consequences; exercise of deliberate judgment; prudence. [1913 Webster]

They all confess, therefore, in the working of that first cause, that counsel is used. --Hooker. [1913 Webster]

3. Result of consultation; advice; instruction. [1913 Webster]

I like thy counsel; well hast thou advised. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

It was ill counsel had misled the girl. --Tennyson. [1913 Webster]

4. Deliberate purpose; design; intent; scheme; plan. [1913 Webster]

The counsel of the Lord standeth forever. --Ps. xxxiii. 11. [1913 Webster]

The counsels of the wicked are deceit. --Prov. xii. 5. [1913 Webster]

5. A secret opinion or purpose; a private matter. [1913 Webster]

Thilke lord . . . to whom no counsel may be hid. --Gower. [1913 Webster]

6. One who gives advice, especially in legal matters; one professionally engaged in the trial or management of a cause in court; also, collectively, the legal advocates united in the management of a case; as, the defendant has able counsel. [1913 Webster]

The King found his counsel as refractory as his judges. --Macaulay. [1913 Webster]

Note: In some courts a distinction is observed between the attorney and the counsel in a cause, the former being employed in the management of the more mechanical parts of the suit, the latter in attending to the pleadings, managing the cause at the trial, and in applying the law to the exigencies of the case during the whole progress of the suit. In other courts the same person can exercise the powers of each. See {Attorney}. --Kent. [1913 Webster]

{In counsel}, in secret. [Obs.] --Chaucer.

{To keep counsel}, or

{To keep one's own counsel}, to keep one's thoughts, purposes, etc., undisclosed. [1913 Webster]

The players can not keep counsel: they 'll tell all. --Shak.

Syn: Advice; consideration; consultation; purpose; scheme; opinion. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • To keep counsel — Keep Keep (k[=e]p), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Kept} (k[e^]pt); p. pr. & vb. n. {Keeping}.] [OE. k[=e]pen, AS. c[=e]pan to keep, regard, desire, await, take, betake; cf. AS. copenere lover, OE. copnien to desire.] 1. To care; to desire. [Obs.] [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To keep one's own counsel — Counsel Coun sel (koun s[e^]l), n. [OE. conseil, F. conseil, fr. L. consilium, fr. the root of consulere to consult, of uncertain origin. Cf. {Consult}, {Consul}.] 1. Interchange of opinions; mutual advising; consultation. [1913 Webster] All the… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To keep a stiff upper lip — Keep Keep (k[=e]p), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Kept} (k[e^]pt); p. pr. & vb. n. {Keeping}.] [OE. k[=e]pen, AS. c[=e]pan to keep, regard, desire, await, take, betake; cf. AS. copenere lover, OE. copnien to desire.] 1. To care; to desire. [Obs.] [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To keep at arm's length — Keep Keep (k[=e]p), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Kept} (k[e^]pt); p. pr. & vb. n. {Keeping}.] [OE. k[=e]pen, AS. c[=e]pan to keep, regard, desire, await, take, betake; cf. AS. copenere lover, OE. copnien to desire.] 1. To care; to desire. [Obs.] [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To keep back — Keep Keep (k[=e]p), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Kept} (k[e^]pt); p. pr. & vb. n. {Keeping}.] [OE. k[=e]pen, AS. c[=e]pan to keep, regard, desire, await, take, betake; cf. AS. copenere lover, OE. copnien to desire.] 1. To care; to desire. [Obs.] [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To keep bad hours — Keep Keep (k[=e]p), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Kept} (k[e^]pt); p. pr. & vb. n. {Keeping}.] [OE. k[=e]pen, AS. c[=e]pan to keep, regard, desire, await, take, betake; cf. AS. copenere lover, OE. copnien to desire.] 1. To care; to desire. [Obs.] [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To keep company with — Keep Keep (k[=e]p), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Kept} (k[e^]pt); p. pr. & vb. n. {Keeping}.] [OE. k[=e]pen, AS. c[=e]pan to keep, regard, desire, await, take, betake; cf. AS. copenere lover, OE. copnien to desire.] 1. To care; to desire. [Obs.] [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To keep down — Keep Keep (k[=e]p), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Kept} (k[e^]pt); p. pr. & vb. n. {Keeping}.] [OE. k[=e]pen, AS. c[=e]pan to keep, regard, desire, await, take, betake; cf. AS. copenere lover, OE. copnien to desire.] 1. To care; to desire. [Obs.] [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To keep good hours — Keep Keep (k[=e]p), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Kept} (k[e^]pt); p. pr. & vb. n. {Keeping}.] [OE. k[=e]pen, AS. c[=e]pan to keep, regard, desire, await, take, betake; cf. AS. copenere lover, OE. copnien to desire.] 1. To care; to desire. [Obs.] [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To keep house — Keep Keep (k[=e]p), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Kept} (k[e^]pt); p. pr. & vb. n. {Keeping}.] [OE. k[=e]pen, AS. c[=e]pan to keep, regard, desire, await, take, betake; cf. AS. copenere lover, OE. copnien to desire.] 1. To care; to desire. [Obs.] [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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