Toilets - Elementary

The British invented the flush toilet in the Nineteenth Century so it is hardly surprising that we have more expressions for them than any other country in the world. Here are ten.

10 expressions to Use In Speaking And Writing: 
  1. Lavatory / Toilet
  2. Loo / Bog
  3. Water closet
  4. Khazi
  5. Latrines
  6. Little boys' room / little girls' room
  7. Ladies / gents
  8. Crapper
  9. Public conveniences
  10. The smallest room / throne room
How To Use These Phrases In Your English: 
  1. Phrases in 1 are general expressions used by (almost) everybody.
  2. In 2, the wod 'loo' is quite polite whereas 'bog' sounds a little impolite.
  3. In 3, the euphemism 'water closet' is often used in restaurants and hotels. Nowadays it has been shortened to the acronym 'W.C.'.
  4. 4 and 5 are military expressions and 'latrines' sound more polite and suggest a block of toilets constructed together.
  5. The phrases in 6 are used to try to make toilets sound cute and sweet. This phrase may annoy some people.
  6. In 7, 'ladies' and 'gentlemen' are the traditional notices posted outside public toilets in the UK. 'Gentlemen' has become abbreviated to 'gents'.
  7. In 8, 'crapper' sounds a little rude but it was actually the name of the man who invented the flush toilet mechanism, Thomas Crapper.
  8. In 9, 'conveniences' is a polite way to refer to public toilets. In many places you must pay and have the correct coin to use one which is not actually convenient at all.
  9. The phrases in 10 are used to talk about the toilet in people's houses. 'Thr

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