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Is phrase "held a phone call" means received a phone call or made a phone call?

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    That is not a very common phrase but it would just mean that a phone call took place - it doesn't tell you who called who. – user96060 Jun 20 at 5:53
  • Thanks for your reply. can we know from the sentence that who is initiate the call? – jamestai Jun 20 at 9:27
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To hold a phone call usually means to organise a phone call in advance. (or usually a phone conference, maybe with speakerphones on either end, possibly even arranged by underlings). It's usually a slightly more formal occurrence than the phoning of somebody initiated by one side - you might agree to ring your kids teacher about their behaviour at lunchtime for instance.

If you google "hold a phone call" you will see lots of examples of world leaders agreeing to "hold a phone call" to discuss political issues.

It doesn't really matter who actually dials the other first in this instance.

So the past tense held a phone call just refers to a phone call that happened in the past

The US and Iranian Leaders held a phone call to discuss rising tensions in the area

  • Thanks you very much. that really help. – jamestai Jun 20 at 12:18
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In my mind, associating "hold" and "phone call" means that a phone call is temporarily suspended, until one of the speakers does something else.

to put on hold = waiting to be connected while making a telephone call (Google definition)


  • to have a phone call = to talk on the phone; not known who made the call;

  • to make a phone call = to dial a number and talk when the other person answers;

  • to receive a phone call = to answer the phone when it is ringing.

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