brim vs rim?

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1 2
What's the difference between a brim and a rim? Below is a list of items, please tell me whether they have a rim or brim.

1. cup

2. mug

3. lunch box

4. glass

5. pot

6. baking pan

7. Bowl

Thanks!
Veteran Member7,658
I know I'm gonna be sorry I got into this. Brim can be confusing because there's an idiom "full to the brim" or "brim full" which can be applied to just about anything you can put stuff in - things which you wouldn't say had brims.

Let's say they all have rims, and the round ones have brims.

You can say, "the rim of the canyon, the rim of the plateau, the rim of the plate, the rim of the desk." Some hats have brims.
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Can I say "the brim of the plate" since they are mostly round? Could you also mark those examples of mine that have brims?
Yes, and years ago a coffee company capitalized on the confusion with the slogan, "Fill it to the rim...with Brim."
77ZPZyghr-s
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1. cup

2. mug

3. lunch box

4. glass

5. pot

6. baking pan

7. Bowl

Those in blue have abrim, am I right?
Webster's has two definitions for "brim" - the upper or outer margin, and the projecting rim of a hat. The first meaning, as Avangi has said, is mostly used when we talk about filling something. It's almost a geometric concept, if you will, rather than a real thing. It's even used in metaphor: you can fill somebody's heart to the brim with gratitude, or their brains to the brim with information.

So, in this first Websterian sense, all the words in the above list have a brim, since they can all contain.

I hate it when bartenders fill martini glasses to the brim. When I try to lift it to my mouth, it always spills, no matter how careful I am.
Johnny's mother filled his lunchbox to the brim every day with good, healthful food, which he promptly traded to his classmates for candy and chips.
You should never fill a baking pan to the brim with batter, since the batter will expand during baking. Only fill them halfway.
I love going caroling. It always fills me to the brim with the "Christmas spirit."

In our next discussion, we will take on rimless, or coupe-style, soup bowls Emotion: smile
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Idiom: to fill to the brim. Also brimming full (nearly overflowing).
hat brim
Everything else: rim.
CJ
Veteran Member53,253
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New2grammarCan I say "the brim of the plate" since they are mostly round? Could you also mark those examples of mine that have brims?
With salutations to Del, I would have said "no." I meant brims are possessed by all the round items on your list as it stands. That excludes only "lunch box" and "baking pan" in my experience, although I now recall that we had a few round baking pans for making round cakes, and cupcake tins for baking nine or a dozen cupcakes together, each cup of which could be said to have a brim.

All the items on your list are containers of sorts, so anything on your list which you conceive of as being round IMHO would have a brim. I didn't mean to imply that anything which is round has a brim. (Certainly not "round like a ball," which is spherical.") The plate is a slippery slope. Some plates are "dished" more than others, in the engineering sense. All have rims and may be "filled to the brim," but I'd say most do not have brims. All of the containers on your list have side walls approaching the vertical. I'd say a Frisbie has a brim, but that's argumentative. (Does it only have a brim when you hold it upside down?)

I seem to remember that the origin of "fill to the brim" had something to do with a positive meniscus, but I can't seem to find it. (The surface tension between liquids and the walls of containers causes some to slope upward and some downward at the point of contact, so some liquids (like mercury) can fill a container to above the rim.)

- A.
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Um...I meant my "yes" in reply to Avangi, just in the sense of agreeing with the confusion surrounding the two terms. I hadn't seen New2's specific brim-related question then.

Positive meniscus??? Good Lord, I thought I was muddying the waters by bringing in the idea of a geometric concept.
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