Lid (container)

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Lid of a Tic Tac mint case

A lid, also known as a cap, is part of a container, and serves as the cover or seal, usually one that completely closes the object. A lid is often a type of closure.


Lids have been found on pottery dating back as far as 3100 BC. Ancient Egyptian canopic jars with lids held the organs of mummified bodies as early as 2686 BC.[1] The coffee lid market is valued at roughly $180 million. An estimated 14 billion lids were sold in 2009 in the United States.[2]

Some containers such as tubs or jars now have a plastic film heat sealed onto the container: this is often called a lidding film.

Cultural references

The word is used metaphorically, as in "keeping the lid on the secret" and "flipped his lid".

An old saying that you never have to put a lid on a bucket of crabs (because when one gets near the top, another will inevitably pull it down) is often used as a metaphor for group situations where an individual feels held back by others.[3][4]

An old Yiddish saying, that "every pot will find its lid" refers to people finding an appropriate match in marriage. [5]

A well-known myth concerns Pandora opening the lid of a box and unleashing terrible evils into the world.[6]

The term "lid" was commonly used in the 1960s and 1970s as a synonym for an ounce of marijuana.[citation needed]

Lids are referred to in the Bible, in the Book of Numbers.[7]

Comedians Fry and Laurie performed a song called "Where is the Lid?".[8]

The rock band Nazareth performed a song called 'Lift the Lid'.[9]

See also

Books, general references