Children's, Intermediate and Advanced Online English Dictionary & Thesaurus

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home plate a flat slab of hard rubber at which the batter stands in a baseball game. The base runner must touch home plate in order to score a run.
license plate a small metal sign on a car, truck, or other vehicle that usually has both numbers and letters. The license plate shows that it is legal to drive the vehicle on public roads.
number plate the British word for a small metal sign on a car, truck, or other vehicle indicating that the vehicle is legal to drive on public roads. Number plate has the same meaning as license plate.
plate tectonics (used with a singular verb) a theory that scientists use to explain the movement of continents, the eruption of volcanoes, and other changes or events in the earth's geology. The theory of plate tectonics says that the earth's crust is made up of separate sections that are like very large plates. These sections move around constantly because they float on melted rock. The movement of these sections of the crust causes earthquakes.
tectonic plate one of the plate-like segments of the Earth's crust and upper mantle. The plates form the outer shell of the planet, and they are actually moving very slowly. Where the plates come into contact with each other, their movement can cause or play a part in the eruption of volcanoes, the building of mountains, and the occurrence of earthquakes.