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Monday 12th January 2004
Toilet trivia
Do you know your toilet trivia?

Amaze your friends and family with your esoteric knowledge of the humble toilet.
Then take the loo quiz to see if you're potty about toilets.


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Toilet Trivia


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View a printable version of this page.

toilet rollUs Brits can be a bit squeamish when having to announce we're going to the toilet, so over the years we've come up with a number of euphemisims.

Euphemisms for going to the toilet
Watering the horses
Spending a penny
Going for a Jimmy Riddle
Going to powder my nose
Wiping the dew off the lily
Going to launch a big ship
Going to drop some friends off at the pool
Pointing the Percy at the porcelain

toilet rollThomas Crapper, a British plumber, developed a type of flushing toilet in 1872. He perfected the cistern - the tank that holds the water for flushing and made flushing quieter. The American soldiers stationed in England during World War I who returned to the US used his name as a euphemism for the toilet.

Thomas Crapper's cistern
Thomas Crapper's cistern

toilet rollBritish actor Kenneth Willams had an obsession about toilets. He constantly suffered from piles and would not use other peoples toilets. At theatres he always insisted on his own personal toilet paper and any visitors to his home had to use the toilet at Tottenham Court Road tube station.

toilet rollRead about Reading's town centre urinals that rise up like the phoenix from the flame.

toilet rollSoul Diva, Diana Ross, used to insist on having cellophane wrapped toilet seats.

toilet rollElizabeth I used a portable toilet shaped like a box covered with red velvet and trimmed in lace with a lid and carrying handles.

toilet rollDuring the Industrial Revolution, when so many lived in unsanitary living conditions, people tossed waste out of their windows and shouted the warning: "Gardez L'eau" (literally "watch out for the water"). This is the origin of our word 'Loo'.

toilet rollAncient Romans built latrines over running water to carry off wastes to the Tiber River. They developed the art of plumbing and constructed underground sewers made of lead, earthenware, or stone.

toilet rollIn 1981 NASA developed an advanced Waste Management System (WMS) for use on the Space Shuttle Orbiter.

toilet rollThe average toilet is flushed eight times a day.

toilet rollThe invention of the flush toilet goes at least back to the time of King Minos on the Island of Crete sometime around 1700 BC.

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