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From Middle English saucer, from Old French saussier (and feminine saussiere; hence modern French saucier m, saucière f).



saucer (plural saucers)

A cup of coffee above, and a saucer beneath.
  1. A small shallow dish to hold a cup and catch drips.
  2. An object round and gently curved, shaped like a saucer.
    The saucer-shaped object could have been a UFO.
  3. A circular sled without runners.
  4. (obsolete) A small pan or other vessel-like food container in which sauce was set on a table.
    • 1631, Francis [Bacon], “II. Century.”, in Sylua Syluarum: Or A Naturall Historie. In Ten Centuries. [], 3rd edition, London: [] William Rawley; [p]rinted by J[ohn] H[aviland] for William Lee [], →OCLC:
      Take two saucers , and strike the edge of the one against the bottom of the other , within a pail of water ; and you shall find , that as you put the saucers lower and lower , the sound groweth more flat
  5. A flat, shallow caisson for raising sunken ships.
  6. A shallow socket for the pivot of a capstan.

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saucer (third-person singular simple present saucers, present participle saucering, simple past and past participle saucered)

  1. (transitive) To pour (tea, etc.) from the cup into the saucer in order to cool it before drinking.
  2. (intransitive) Of the eyes: to become large and round.
    • 2016, Ian Mitchell-Gill, Merrett's Gift:
      Lydia's eyes saucered with shock. Her heart was beating very fast and all her adrenaline kicked in.


Middle English[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]


From Old French saussier (and feminine saussiere); equivalent to sauce +‎ -er.



saucer (plural saucers)

  1. A small receptacle or bowl for storing sauce in.
  2. A small plate, bowl, or dish; a saucer.


  • English: saucer
  • Scots: saucer