Top/cap/ lid

  • Joobs

    Banned
    Glasgow, Scotland - English
    Can we use these words interchangeably to mean ' a cover on something'?

    Not really, it depends on the type of container you are describing. For instance a Pill bottle could be said to have a cap but lid or top wouldn't be appropriate whereas a paint tin would have a lid but top or cap wouldn't really fit there and lastly a milk bottle would have a top but cap or lid wouldn't be the right word.
     

    Prairiefire

    Senior Member
    US (Midwest) - English
    This could get interesting:

    pen -- cap
    laundry hamper -- lid
    toilet -- cover (the furry thing with elastic)
    toilet -- lid (the hard thing attached with a hinge)
    bottle -- cap
    jar -- lid
    mixing bowl, storage container -- cover
    saucepan, casserole dish -- lid
    gas tank -- cap


    I have no idea what pattern or principle sorts them out...?
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Don't expect to find absolute consistency on this issue.
    I am not correcting Prairiefire, simply offering my own preferences:
    pen -- cap top
    laundry hamper -- lid :tick:
    toilet -- cover (the furry thing with elastic) :confused:
    toilet -- lid (the hard thing attached with a hinge) cover
    bottle -- cap top
    jar -- lid :tick:
    mixing bowl, storage container -- cover top or lid
    saucepan, casserole dish -- lid :tick:
    gas tank -- cap :tick:
     

    Elwintee

    Senior Member
    England English
    This could get interesting:

    pen -- cap
    laundry hamper -- lid
    toilet -- cover (the furry thing with elastic)
    toilet -- lid (the hard thing attached with a hinge)
    bottle -- cap
    jar -- lid
    mixing bowl, storage container -- cover
    saucepan, casserole dish -- lid
    gas tank -- cap


    I have no idea what pattern or principle sorts them out...?

    If it's any help, I think a lid is always larger than a cap. Also, we speak of a 'milk bottle top' not 'cap'. But this (on old-fashioned glass bottles) is made of foil, not solid metal or plastic.
     

    min300

    Senior Member
    Iran ,( Persian)Farsi
    Thank you very much joob, prairiefire, panjandrum and Elwintee for your explanations and examples:). You helped me to have an idea of how to use them.



    Here are some of the examples I saw in deferent resources:

    1.'Replace cap after use' .This is a note on my white board marker.

    2. but in my Cambridge dictionary there is a picture showing ' top of a pen'.
    ' a bottle top' .
    Example for cap: ' the camera has a lens cap'
    Example for lid: ' lid of the jar' and ' lid on the saucepan'.

    3. Oxford Advance Genie:

    Examples for top: 'Where's the top of this pen?' and ' a bottle with screw top'.
    and as the definition of cap: a protective cover for pen, bottle , etc.
    Examples for lid: Dustbin lid, the lid of the jar.


    But which one would you use for ' a box'?:confused:
     

    Prairiefire

    Senior Member
    US (Midwest) - English
    My beverage comes sealed with a cork.


    cereal box: box top
    photocopy paper box (separate, removable cover): lid
     

    edgrolvr

    New Member
    English - U.S.
    A cap -

    is generally small
    goes on a bottle or tube
    seals something to prevent spills

    A lid -

    is generally bigger than a cap
    goes on jars and other containers
    covers but does not seal something, does not prevent spills

    A top ....?.... it's a more general term for a cover?
     
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