plate

1 of 2

noun

plural plates
1
a
: 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 cells and microorganisms
especially : petri dish see also agar plate
4
a
: 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
platelike adjective

plate

2 of 2

verb

plated; plating

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
Phrases
on a plate
: without having been earned : as a gift
goals were handed to them on a plate

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.
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
His offensive numbers were down a small tick from his junior year, but where Fitz-Gerald really improved was with his plate discipline. Adam Lichtenstein, Sun Sentinel, 13 June 2024 Some of them carried supplies, such as boxes of yerba mates, coolers, paper cups and paper plates. Grace Toohey, Los Angeles Times, 13 June 2024
Verb
The National Association for Surface Finishing, an industry organization representing chrome platers, among others, said their industry has made a lot of progress to keep chrome plating safe for workers and the environment but acknowledged alternatives are needed. Peter Valdes-Dapena, CNN, 14 June 2024 Needless to say, there is financial drama in store, guest cameos, beautifully plated food, and plenty of gratuitous yelling. Abby Montanez, Robb Report, 12 June 2024 See all Example Sentences for plate 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'plate.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Noun

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

First Known Use

Noun

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

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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

Dictionary Entries Near plate

Cite this Entry

“Plate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/plate. Accessed 20 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition

plate

1 of 2 noun
1
a
: a flat thin piece of material
b
: metal in sheets
steel plate
c
: a thin layer of one metal deposited on another
2
a
: one of the broad metal pieces used in armor
b
: armor made of plates
3
: a usually flat bony or horny bodily part forming part of a covering of an animal (as some fishes or reptiles)
4
5
: any of the huge movable segments into which the earth's lithosphere is divided and which are held to float on and travel over the mantle
6
a
: precious metal
especially : silver bullion
b
: vessels (as bowls or cups) used in the home and made of or plated with precious metal (as silver)
7
a
: a shallow usually circular dish from which food is eaten or served
b
: a main food course served on a plate
a plate of spaghetti
c
: food and service for one person
a dinner at $10 a plate
d
: a dish or pouch used in taking a collection (as in a church)
8
a
: a prepared surface from which printing is done
b
: a sheet of material (as plastic or glass) coated with a chemical sensitive to light for use in a camera
9
10
: the part of a denture that holds the false teeth and fits to the mouth
also : a set of false teeth
11
: a full-page illustration
an art book with color plates
platelike adjective

plate

2 of 2 verb
plated; plating
: to cover or equip with plate
plate the teapot with silver

Medical Definition

plate

1 of 2 noun
1
: a thin relatively flat piece or lamina (as of bone) that is part of the body
2
: a flat glass or plastic dish used chiefly for culturing cells and microorganisms
especially : petri dish see also agar plate
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

plate

2 of 2 transitive verb
plated; plating
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

More from Merriam-Webster on plate

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