Use this forum to suggest Good Words for Professor Beard.
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Postby eberntson » Tue May 08, 2012 3:58 pm


Pronunciation: /ˈtɔɪlɪt/

1a large bowl for urinating or defecating into, typically plumbed into a sewage system and with a flushing mechanism; a lavatory: Liz heard the toilet flush
a room, building, or cubicle containing a toilet or toilets: a public toilet [as modifier]: someone pushed at the toilet door

2 [in singular] the process of washing oneself, dressing, and attending to one’s appearance: her toilet completed, she finally went back downstairs
[as modifier] denoting articles used in this process: a bathroom cabinet stocked with toilet articles
the cleansing of part of a person’s body as a medical procedure.

verb (toilets, toileting, toileted)
[with object] (usually as noun toileting)

assist or supervise (someone, especially an infant or invalid) in using a toilet.
[no object] use a toilet: sufferers may need help with dressing, bathing, and toileting


go down the toilet
informal be completely lost or wasted; fail utterly: they didn’t want to see their investment go down the toilet


mid 16th century: from French toilette 'cloth, wrapper', diminutive of toile (see toile). The word originally denoted a cloth used as a wrapper for clothes; then (in the 17th century) a cloth cover for a dressing table, the articles used in dressing, and the process of dressing, later also of washing oneself (toilet (sense 2 of the noun)). In the 19th century the word came to denote a dressing room, and, in the US, one with washing facilities; hence, a lavatory (early 20th century)

(Src: OED, Compact)
Fear less, hope more;
eat less, chew more;
whine less, breathe more;
talk less, say more,
and all good things will be yours.
--R. Burns

Perry Lassiter
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Postby Perry Lassiter » Tue May 08, 2012 9:24 pm

Fascinating. Reminds me (as the AA often does) how complex simple words often are. Thanks.

Philip Hudson
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Postby Philip Hudson » Wed May 09, 2012 12:58 am

I was prepared for all the definitions but I was totally surprised by the etymology. I guess I had created a folk etymology. I thought it came from "toil" meaning work and "ette" a diminutive; hence “little job.” Thanks for the enlightenment.
It is dark at night, but the Sun will come up and then we can see.

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Postby LukeJavan8 » Sat May 19, 2012 11:23 am

I remember in Freshman French, the term
"faire la Toilette", meant to do ones' 'washup' before
school, e.g., and thought it so funny.
-----please, draw me a sheep-----

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