plating of iron or steel for making the shells of boilers, covering the hulls of ships, etc.
syndicated or ready-to-print copy, used especially by weekly newspapers.
trite, hackneyed writing.
the detailed standard wording of a contract, warranty, etc.
Informal. phrases or units of text used repeatedly, as in correspondence produced by a word-processing system.
frozen, crusty, hard-packed snow, often with icy patches.
Also, boiler plate.

1855–60 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
boilerplate (ˈbɔɪləˌpleɪt)
1.  a form of mild-steel plate used in the production of boiler shells
2.  a copy made with the intention of making other copies from it
3.  a set of instructions incorporated in several places in a computer program or a standard form of words used repeatedly in drafting contracts, guarantees, etc
4.  a draft contract that can easily be modified to cover various types of transaction
5.  to incorporate standard material automatically in a text

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

newspaper (and now information technology) slang for "unit of writing that can be used over and over without change," 1893, from a literal meaning (1840) "metal rolled in large, flat plates for use in making steam boilers." The connecting notion is probably of sturdiness or reusability. From 1890s to
1950s it was literal: publicity items were cast or stamped in metal ready for the printing press and distributed to newspapers as filler. The largest supplier was Western Newspaper Union.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
That's a given and will be ignored as standard boilerplate.
Such words of caution are often boilerplate in these filings, but in this case they were prescient.
His public speeches have mostly consisted of boilerplate prose.
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