\ ˈplāt How to pronounce plate (audio) \

Definition of plate

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a smooth flat thin piece of material
b(1) : forged, rolled, or cast metal in sheets usually thicker than ¹/₄ inch (6 millimeters)
(2) : a very thin layer of metal deposited on a surface of base metal by plating
c : one of the broad metal pieces used in armor also : armor of such plates
d(1) : a thin relatively flat anatomical part (such as a lamina of bone) of an animal body especially : scute
(2) : the thin under portion of the forequarter of beef especially : the fatty back part — see beef illustration
f : any of the large movable segments into which the earth's lithosphere is divided according to the theory of plate tectonics
2 [Middle English; partly from Anglo-French plate plate, bullion; partly from Old Spanish plata silver, from Vulgar Latin *platta metal plate, from feminine of plattus flat]
a obsolete : a silver coin
b : precious metal especially : silver bullion
3 [Middle English, from Anglo-French plat, plate dish, plate, from plat flat]
a : domestic hollowware made of or plated with gold, silver, or base metals
b : a shallow usually circular vessel from which food is eaten or served
c(1) : a quantity to fill a plate : plateful
(2) : a main course served on a plate
(3) : food and service supplied to one person a dinner at $10 a plate
d(1) : a prize given to the winner in a contest
(2) British : a horse race in which the contestants compete for a prize of fixed value rather than stakes
e : a dish or pouch passed during collections
f : a flat glass or plastic dish used chiefly for culturing microorganisms
4a : a prepared surface from which printing is done
b : a sheet of material (such as glass or plastic) coated with a light-sensitive photographic emulsion
c : a metallic grid with its interstices filled with active material that forms one of the structural units of a battery
5 : a horizontal structural member that provides bearing and anchorage especially for the trusses of a roof or the rafters
6 : the part of a denture that fits to the mouth broadly : denture
7 : a full-page illustration often on different paper from the text pages
8 : a schedule of matters to deal with have a lot on my plate now
on a plate
: without having been earned : as a gift goals were handed to them on a plate


plated; plating

Definition of plate (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to cover or equip with plate: such as
a : to provide with armor plate
b : to cover with an adherent layer mechanically, chemically, or electrically also : to deposit (something, such as a layer) on a surface
2 : to make a printing surface from or for
3 : to fix or secure with a plate
4 : to cause (a runner) to score in baseball
5 : to arrange (food) on a plate or dish

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Other Words from plate


platelike \ ˈplāt-​ˌlīk How to pronounce plate (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for plate

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of plate in a Sentence

Noun a plate of cheese and crackers I ate a salad and a plate of spaghetti. A shiny metal plate was screwed to the door. He had a steel plate put in his shoulder after the accident.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun But considering lefties across baseball last year hit .223 with a .670 OPS against same-side pitching, Mullins’ six hits and a walk in 12 plate appearances against lefties represent quite a start. Jon Meoli,, "Two years after his free-fall from majors, former Norfolk Tide Cedric Mullins’ ‘incredible’ progress on display," 12 Apr. 2021 Now 40 years old, Cruz is still pounding the baseball, with four homers and 10 RBI in 32 plate appearances (1.395 OPS). Jr Radcliffe, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "These are the former Brewers on big-league rosters in 2021," 12 Apr. 2021 Nunez, who crushed 50 home runs over 263 games with the Baltimore Orioles 2018-20, hit just .188 with one long ball in 33 plate appearances during spring training. Tyler J. Davis, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Tigers place Miguel Cabrera on IL, add Renato Nunez to 40-man roster," 11 Apr. 2021 Curt Casali and Devin Mesoraco have been the lone Reds catchers with more than 50 plate appearances to post an OPS+ above 100 in a season. Charlie Goldsmith, The Enquirer, "How will the Reds juggle playing time between Tucker Barnhart and Tyler Stephenson?," 11 Apr. 2021 Arizona's Josh VanMeter reached base in all five of his plate appearances. David Brandt, Star Tribune, "Weaver takes no-hitter into 7th, Diamondbacks top Reds 7-0," 11 Apr. 2021 The outfielder has amassed solid numbers, hitting at a.448 clip in 66 plate appearances. Julio Vega, USA TODAY, "Amarillo High's Max Milligan signs for Trinity College," 10 Apr. 2021 In two plate appearances earlier in the game on Thursday, Escobar patiently worked a pair of walks. Nick Piecoro, The Arizona Republic, "Diamondbacks see positive signs at the plate despite slow start," 10 Apr. 2021 He was called up by Oakland in late 2019 and did not homer in 83 plate appearances but hit .293 with 10 extra-base hits and 13 RBIs. Matt Kawahara, San Francisco Chronicle, "A's Seth Brown has 'a great opportunity' in latest call-up," 9 Apr. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Stir together and then plate and top with the remainder of the chives. New York Times, "From Zac Posen, a Rich and Briny Pasta for Spring," 30 Mar. 2021 Not the Mauricio Dubón who swings at anything close but the Mauricio Dubón who extends plate appearances and gets on base far more. John Shea, San Francisco Chronicle, "Giants' outfield decisions center around Mauricio Dubón, who has new hitting approach," 16 Mar. 2021 Davis was driving a black 2013 Volkswagen Jetta, Ohio plate JGZ8921. Carol Robinson |, al, "Man with Alabama ties sought in Ohio disappearance of ex-girlfriend," 3 Mar. 2021 As the Orioles took on the Pittsburgh Pirates in spring training on Sunday, cheers and applause for Mancini were heard around the stadium as the 28-year-old stepped up to plate. Jason Duaine Hahn,, "MLB's Trey Mancini Receives Standing Ovation During First Game Back After Cancer Treatment," 1 Mar. 2021 Return the skillet or plate on top of the mushrooms and cook until the mushrooms have significantly reduced in size and almost all the liquid has evaporated, another 5 to 6 minutes. Washington Post, "A towering mushroom Reuben that channels the flavors of the deli classic," 24 Feb. 2021 Then, clean the drip tray and plate with a cloth. Remove the water reservoir and lid, clean both by hand, and rinse. Kelly Allen, House Beautiful, "Here's How to Clean a Keurig Brewer," 25 Jan. 2021 In 2 batches, cook mushrooms, tossing occasionally, until golden brown and tender, 5 to 7 minutes; transfer to plate. Taylor Murray, Good Housekeeping, "Mushroom and Thyme Campanelle," 6 Jan. 2021 Pretty much every Blue Apron meal is ready to plate in under 35 minutes! CNN Underscored, "Never fall back on mac ’n’ cheese dinners again once you sign up for Blue Apron," 17 Dec. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'plate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of plate


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for plate


Middle English, from Anglo-French, from plate, feminine of plat flat, from Vulgar Latin *plattus, probably from Greek platys broad, flat — more at place

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Time Traveler for plate

Time Traveler

The first known use of plate was in the 14th century

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Statistics for plate

Last Updated

15 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Plate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for plate



English Language Learners Definition of plate

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a flat and usually round dish that is used for eating or serving food
: the food that is served on a plate
: a thin, flat piece of metal



English Language Learners Definition of plate (Entry 2 of 2)

: to add a layer of metal to the outside of (something)
baseball : to cause (a run or a runner) to score


\ ˈplāt How to pronounce plate (audio) \

Kids Definition of plate

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a shallow usually round dish
2 : a main course of a meal I ate a plate of spaghetti.
3 : a thin flat piece of material steel plate
5 : a piece of metal on which something is engraved or molded a license plate
6 : an illustration often covering a full page of a book
7 : a sheet of glass coated with a chemical sensitive to light for use in a camera


plated; plating

Kids Definition of plate (Entry 2 of 2)

: to cover with a thin layer of metal (as gold or silver)


\ ˈplāt How to pronounce plate (audio) \

Medical Definition of plate

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a thin relatively flat piece or lamina (as of bone) that is part of the body
2a : a flat glass dish used chiefly for culturing microorganisms especially : petri dish
b : a culture or culture medium contained in such a dish
3 : a supporting or reinforcing element: as
a : the part of a denture that fits in the mouth broadly : denture
b : a thin flat narrow piece of metal (as stainless steel) that is used to repair a bone defect or fracture
plated; plating

Medical Definition of plate (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to inoculate and culture (microorganisms or cells) on a plate also : to distribute (an inoculum) on a plate or plates for cultivation
2 : to repair (as a fractured bone) with metal plates

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