retain-v; 3 Senses

Sense Number 1: continue to physically contain or hold something

Commentary: NP1[-agent](container) RETAIN NP2

The sea retains the sun's warmth longer than the land.
This soil retains water.
The cells retained the drug for a long time.
The city's water supply is retained in a reservoir.
When adults retain too much water we can treat them by restricting fluid intake.

VerbNet: NP
FrameNet: Memory
PropBank: retain.01
WordNet 3.0 Sense Numbers: 1

Sense Number 2: maintain posession of

Commentary: NP1[+agent] RETAIN NP2[+/-concrete](possession, attribute, etc) may be used metaphorically

I can't retain all that information!
We were asked to retain a little over than 600 words.
Despite losing the court case he retains all rights to the magazine article.
We retain the copyright to the poem.
The company retained a collateral interest in each policy.
She has lost her battle to retain control of the company.
He managed to retain his dignity throughout the performance.
They wanted us to retain the original styling of the 1940's era.
The athlete retained the lead througout the competion.
I would rather live in a cow-town and retain our way of life.

VerbNet: NP
FrameNet: NM
PropBank: retain.01
WordNet 3.0 Sense Numbers: 3, 4

Sense Number 3: hire, keep in one's pay or services

Commentary: NP1[+human] RETAIN NP2

As the family fortune waned, they could not retain their household staff.
It is wise to retain a lawyer who knows the local court procedures.
Effective training helps retain employees.

VerbNet: NP
FrameNet: Hiring
PropBank: retain.01
WordNet 3.0 Sense Numbers: 2