from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The plate of a dial, on which the lines are drawn to show the hour or time of the day.
  • n. The face of a clock or watch, on which the time of the day is shown.
  • n. Any kind of index-plate.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • He had now got a piece of real judicial business by the end, instead of being obliged, as was his common case, to intrude his opinion where it was neither wished nor wanted; and felt as happy in the exchange as a boy when he gets his first new watch, which actually goes when wound up, and has real hands and a true dial-plate.

    The Heart of Mid-Lothian

  • That eminent antiquary, Dr. Dryasdust, is possessed of an antique watch, with a silver dial-plate, the mainspring being a piece of catgut instead of a chain, which bears the names of Vincent and Tunstall,

    The Fortunes of Nigel

  • Davie. — “For, as the sun goeth round the dial-plate in twenty-four hours, add, for the moon, fifty minutes and a half — —”

    The Fortunes of Nigel

  • The eyes and ears of his hearers were anxiously strained, as if to gain some sight or sound which might be converted or wrested into a type of approbation, and ever and anon dark looks were turned on the dial-plate of the time-piece, to watch its progress towards the moment of execution.

    Old Mortality

  • He sometime afterwards laid aside this dial-plate; and when I asked him the reason, he said, ‘It might do very well upon a clock which a man keeps in his closet; but to have it upon his watch which he carries about with him, and which is often looked at by others, might be censured as ostentatious.’

    The Life of Samuel Johnson LL.D.

  • Mr. Steevens is now possessed of the dial-plate inscribed as above.

    The Life of Samuel Johnson LL.D.

  • At this time I observed upon the dial-plate of his watch a short

    The Life of Samuel Johnson LL.D.

  • In comparing those two writers, he used this expression: ‘that there was as great a difference between them as between a man who knew how a watch was made, and a man who could tell the hour by looking on the dial-plate.’

    The Life of Samuel Johnson LL.D.

  • Near the top of the dial-plate was seen from without the regular uplifting of the little arm, applying its stroke to the bell within.

    Adèle Dubois A Story of the Lovely Miramichi Valley in New Brunswick

  • The fingers of the old clock slowly crept along the dial-plate towards four, the hour so relentlessly enforced for interments for half a century by the sexton, who was now about to lay away his own wife in the greedy maw of the grave.

    Lancashire Idylls (1898)


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