Definition of tablet in English:



  • 1A flat slab of stone, clay, or wood, used especially for an inscription.

    ‘at the corner of the apse is a memorial tablet’
    • ‘We have an inscription on a stone tablet which contains a date which translates to 876.’
    • ‘An old walled kitchen garden to the east has become the setting for stone tablets inscribed by letter cutters.’
    • ‘From beneath mounds of sand and debris, Babylon and Nineveh were exposed to view together with whole libraries of clay cuneiform tablets.’
    • ‘Any significant ancient ruler required a personal seal for signing clay tablets and other inscriptions.’
    • ‘Many of these Han burials were readily identifiable by inscribed stone stelae, tablets recording the name, titles, and dates of the deceased.’
    • ‘The tablet's inscription tells the story of Zhu Yuanzhang, the first emperor of the Ming Dynasty.’
    • ‘Moses is clutching under his right arm what must be the twin tablets of stone upon which he inscribed the Ten Commandments.’
    • ‘A votive tablet found in Plovdiv and now housed at the National Archaeological Museum in Sofia depicts one such occurrence.’
    • ‘The clay cuneiform tablets, only inches tall, record business from about 2000 B.C.’
    • ‘Thousands of cuneiform tablets and ancient Christian, Muslim and Jewish manuscripts are gone.’
    • ‘Among them is a single display of Babylonian cuneiform tablets that accounts for nine missing items.’
    • ‘As if memories were not enough, two stone tablets with inscriptions and a copper plate were unearthed from inside the church.’
    • ‘The names of foreign enemies and Egyptian traitors were inscribed on clay pots, tablets, or figurines of bound prisoners.’
    • ‘Representations of votive tablets on pillars, however, also occur on a number of regular votive reliefs.’
    • ‘They are found carved in rock, ceramics, clay tablets, mosaics, manuscripts, stone patterns, turf, hedges, and cathedral pavements.’
    • ‘The oldest extant writing surfaces include Babylonian clay tablets and Indian palm leaves.’
    • ‘Our signs carved in stone, inscribed on clay tablets, painted on walls, papyrus or on pieces of leather, could be transported to different places and people.’
    • ‘This cult of sacrifice is eulogised in a number of inscriptions on tablets called the hero-stones found in this part of the country and these glorify the warrior clans and their valor.’
    • ‘This story of Moses' summons to go to the mountain to receive the tablets of stone would have been a familiar text to temple leaders and other practicing Jews of Jesus' day.’
    slab, panel, plaque, plate, sign
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    1. 1.1Architecture
      another term for table (sense 3 of the noun)
  • 2British A small disc or cylinder of a compressed solid substance, typically a measured amount of a medicine or drug.

    ‘headache tablets’
    ‘ecstasy tablets’
    • ‘Fifteen people described how they deliberately and routinely adjusted the amount of tablets they took.’
    • ‘Even a quarter of an aspirin tablet, taken in regular doses, can be enough to prevent attacks.’
    • ‘If you are taking the extended-release tablet form of this medicine, swallow the tablets whole.’
    • ‘Antihistamine drugs are available as tablets, creams, and injections.’
    • ‘An amount of ecstasy tablets were also seized in this raid.’
    • ‘I would like you to think about a drug, a tablet, which can prevent heart attacks.’
    • ‘Severe attacks of asthma are sometimes treated with a course of steroid tablets, such as prednisolone.’
    • ‘Each tablet of the drug was administered with 300 ml of water.’
    • ‘You may be given antibiotic tablets or capsules in addition to a topical treatment.’
    • ‘Combination chemotherapy can be used, usually as a combination of intravenous drugs and tablets.’
    • ‘You will usually be given pain relief such as paracetamol or codeine tablets to help ease your discomfort.’
    • ‘I'm hoping the combination of sleeping pill and codeine tablets will kick in for her shortly to give her some relief and both of us some rest.’
    • ‘Inflammation can be reduced with ibuprofen tablets and paracetamol can help to relieve any pain.’
    • ‘Many chest physicians advise patients who are taking steroids to swallow their tablets in the morning because morning dosing is thought to minimise adrenal suppression.’
    • ‘You can also take antihistamine tablets containing drugs such as cyclizine or cinnarizine to prevent travel or motion sickness.’
    • ‘Another technique that can be used with a tablet of medicine that is too bitter to chew is to crush it and mix it with strawberry jam or applesauce, she adds.’
    • ‘Drugs such as aspirin, cold tablets and vitamins are best taken with water.’
    • ‘Codeine tablets and morphine oral solution are available.’
    • ‘It is important to ask about over the counter medicines such as cold tablets and sleep aids, which patients and families may forget to mention.’
    • ‘Taking just one ecstasy tablet could cause long-lasting brain damage leading to depression, scientists have warned.’
    pill, capsule, lozenge, caplet, pastille, pellet, drop, ball
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    1. 2.1 A small block or bar of soap.
      • ‘Before the ‘boys’ came along everything at the factory was done by hand - including cutting the soap into bars or tablets.’
      bar, cake, slab, brick, block, chunk, piece
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  • 3A small portable computer that accepts input directly on to its screen rather than via a keyboard or mouse.

  • 4North American A writing pad.

    • ‘In her arms was a writing tablet and a pencil, looking like they were about to fly out of her hands at any moment.’
    • ‘She is sitting at her window with her writing tablet, the full moon providing substantial light.’
    • ‘It consisted of a video of a little girl's hand clasping a pencil and writing on a tablet.’
    • ‘And speaking of notes, an anonymous hand-scrawled poem mysteriously appeared on a communal writing tablet in the bathroom that night.’
    • ‘Legal pad enthusiasts do seem to have a psychological connection to their writing tablets.’
    • ‘Pulling his writing tablet from his harness pouch, Alan retrieved the pen he'd placed in the side of his war collar.’
    notebook, notepad, writing pad, memo pad, jotter, block, sketch pad, sketchbook
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  • 5A kind of token giving authority for a train to proceed over a single-track line.

    • ‘Note how the engine driver hands down the tablet to the station master.’
  • 6Scottish mass noun A traditional sweet made from sugar, condensed milk, and butter, resembling fudge but having a hard, grainy texture.


Middle English: from Old French tablete, from a diminutive of Latin tabula (see table).