In my first question I used preposition "in" ("There is meat, rice and tomatoes in the plate"), but I was said, that it should be "on".

But if the plate is not flat, but deep, like a pot then you can pour soup in it, or put rice, meat etc.

Why does it have to be "on", not "in"?

  • 1
    A plate is never deep; it's flat or shallow. So you have to use "on". It could be called a pot or bowl which may be followed by in. – Khan Sep 17 '15 at 11:32
  • @BrianHitchcock - markdown does not work in the title, except for -- creating em dashes. – jimsug Sep 18 '15 at 12:15
  • @user24318 "this sentence" in a title is less helpful than explaining the problem precisely. When you ask a question it says What is your English language learning question? Be specific. I've edited the title to make it specific. – jimsug Sep 18 '15 at 12:18
  • Guys please don't start an edit war. The title is as descriptive as it can be now. See meta.ell.stackexchange.com/q/2630. – M.A.R. Sep 18 '15 at 12:18

Plates are by definition mostly flat. Things can't be in them, only on them, because they don't have an inside.

Rice on a plate

If the plate is deep like a pot then it's not a plate, it's a bowl. (Or a deep plate, but most people who don't work in crockery marketing would call a deep plate a bowl.) You can put things in a bowl because they have an inside.

Rice in a bowl Rice in a different bowl

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  • And what can you say about this bit.ly/1KTo5mt? – user24318 Sep 17 '15 at 12:07
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    Well done for finding the one bizarre exception to this rule. That's a soup plate. You can put soup in a soup plate, obviously. "There is meat, rice and tomatoes in the soup plate" is OK, although people will wonder why you're serving something other than soup in a soup plate, or if you put those things in your soup. If you're not serving soup, it's better to just call it a bowl. – ssav Sep 17 '15 at 12:17

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