Definition of crate in English:



  • 1A slatted wooden case used for transporting or storing goods.

    ‘a crate of bananas’
    • ‘Catherine was sitting back against the wooden crates with her eyes closed for a while when she heard that familiar voice which she had been dying to hear throughout the evening.’
    • ‘They hid behind wooden crates till the noise faded.’
    • ‘Undisclosed sums of money were exchanged and the two large wooden crates arrived in the basement of the Schomburg’
    • ‘As summer arrived, so did the big wooden crates bringing wonderful dolls, mechanical toys, pedal cars, tricycles, scooters, dolls' prams.’
    • ‘At the end of the Second World War, flowers were purchased from Covent Garden Market and delivered by rail in returnable wooden crates.’
    • ‘Next to the walls, on the inside, are large wooden crates.’
    • ‘Once the moulds were made, the task of shipping them back, each piece carefully wrapped and packed in wooden crates, was an even more difficult and expensive business.’
    • ‘His cart was stacked three deep with myriad wooden crates and boxes.’
    • ‘Big sheds, walls of wooden crates and brightly painted processing plants dot fertile valleys.’
    • ‘The captain put down his cup on a stack of wooden crates.’
    • ‘We also use colorful signs, a banner with a rooster on it, old wooden chicken crates and egg baskets - anything we can think of to draw people in.’
    • ‘Flea markets, and summer produce stands are great places to shop for previously used wooden crates.’
    • ‘It's also capable of bashing open wooden crates.’
    • ‘I walked a bit further, climbing over old wooden crates and soaked cardboard boxes.’
    • ‘We built go-carts out of wooden crates and bits of scrap metal.’
    • ‘It was lined with the backsides of an assortment of brick buildings and had wooden crates of varying sizes stacked at random intervals next to each one.’
    • ‘The training included learning how to blow up 27 wooden crates - a test he passed.’
    • ‘Upstairs Cole found piles of boxes and wooden crates.’
    • ‘He didn't have a stool to sit on, he managed to balance himself on a wooden crate.’
    • ‘There were cobwebs and old wooden crates and barrels scattered carelessly about; evidently, this place had once been used for storage.’
    case, packing case, chest, coffer, trunk, box, casket, strongbox, basket, hamper, pack, bin, drum, container, receptacle
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1A square metal or plastic container divided into small individual units, used for transporting or storing bottles.
      ‘a milk crate’
      ‘a crate of beer’
      • ‘The truck driver slams on his brakes, and the back of the truck pops open, spilling out at least six crates of water bottles.’
      • ‘Nowadays it is common for the World of Wines to sell crates containing 12 bottles of wine.’
      • ‘For some reason, there were crates of water bottles in the girls' locker room: maybe for a team sport.’
      • ‘As a treat, I was allowed to choose a bottle of soft drink from the crates stored in the back room.’
      • ‘It was only wide enough for a small sofa, an old metal milk crate and a few shelves where he stored bottles of wine and various sizes of canned foods.’
      • ‘The Clayton park site was abused by people dumping stacks of paper and crates of beer bottles on the ground instead of in the bin.’
      • ‘The porch was full of crates of beer bottles and bags of rubbish.’
      • ‘During routine investigations at the scene police discovered a crate with empty beer bottles lying next to the car.’
      • ‘The stout guy disappeared for a moment, then returned with a crate of bottles.’
      • ‘So I've made sure the flat is ready for them - a fresh crate of beer and two bottles of wine in the fridge.’
      • ‘Plastic milk crates often serve as flexible storage units for penny-pinching college students.’
      • ‘It was the sound of milk bottles being dropped into crates and loaded on to lorries.’
      • ‘After an hour, Phillip carried one of the crates of bottles to the haggard, and with a corkscrew he deftly pulled the corks from them, handing one to each man.’
      • ‘Ah, you have a huge crate of empty wine bottles back in the kitchens, right?’
      • ‘This summer, a pregnant woman got a ticket for sitting down on the subway steps, a man for sitting on a milk crate on the side of a sidewalk, and a store owner for too many words on his sign.’
      • ‘In the absence of a nicer box, which I intend to get later, I put the short sleeves shirts stacked in a milk crate set on its side atop the pine boxes.’
      • ‘In wintertime I stored perishables in a milk crate on the porch roof outside the large window.’
      • ‘We would often finish a night there with a group of ten or so of us heading to my place laden with bottles of wine and crates of beer.’
      • ‘I looked out at the field and the team was huddled along the sideline, and Dylan was standing out side it with a crate full of water bottles.’
      • ‘A number of milk bottle crates fell on top of him, covering him in broken glass.’
      carton, pack, packet, package
      View synonyms
  • 2dated, informal An old and dilapidated vehicle.

    automobile, motor vehicle, motorized vehicle, means of transport, conveyance, machine
    View synonyms


  • Pack (something) in a crate for transportation.

    • ‘He usually kept the eggs and chickens that he obtained on the route, candled and crated them, and sold them to a man who came to his home to buy them.’
    • ‘But shortly after, they crated weapons far greater than they could control and the great war that caused our evolutions began.’
    • ‘They would have got far more on the open market and for that they undertook to crate it in new containers and ship it to Liverpool, which is how for us the biggest jigsaw puzzle in the world started.’
    • ‘Professionals are obligated to crate artwork according to standards that prevent items from being damaged in transit.’
    • ‘They packed their bags with their clothes and personal effects, then crated their armor and weapons for transport in the ships cargo bay.’
    • ‘They crated the contents of the Amber Room, the chairs, tables and ornaments carved from the precious resin, but the walls proved too intricate to dismantle quickly.’
    • ‘It took Matt only four days to disassemble and crate the plane.’


Late Middle English: perhaps related to Dutch krat tailboard of a wagon earlier box of a coach of unknown origin.