a. An open, generally shallow concave container for holding, cooking, or serving food.
b. dishes The containers and often the utensils used when eating: took out the dishes and silverware; washed the dishes.
c. A shallow concave container used for purposes other than eating: an evaporating dish.
2. The amount that a dish can hold.
a. The food served or contained in a dish: a dish of ice cream.
b. A particular variety or preparation of food: Sushi is a Japanese dish.
a. A depression similar to that in a shallow concave container for food.
b. The degree of concavity in such a depression.
5. Electronics A dish antenna.
6. Slang A good-looking person, especially an attractive woman.
7. Informal Idle talk; gossip: "plenty of dish about her tattoos, her plastic surgeries, and her ever-younger inamorati" (Louise Kennedy).
v. dished, dish·ing, dish·es
1. To serve (food) in or as if in a dish: dished up the stew.
2. To present: dished up an excellent entertainment.
3. To hollow out; make concave.
4. Informal To gossip about.
5. Chiefly British Slang To ruin, foil, or defeat.
To talk idly, especially to gossip.
To dispense freely: likes to dish out advice.
dish it out Slang
To deal out criticism or abuse.
[Middle English, from Old English disc, from Latin discus; see DISK.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.