One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A basic type of toilet with dry earth used to cover excrement.
lavatory, wc, water closet, convenience, public convenience, facilities, urinal, privy, latrine, outhouse, jakesView synonyms
- ‘Hidden away under a large yew tree was the privy or earth closet, our only toilet facilities.’
- ‘However, most houses in the village were served by earth closets and the inability to discharge water closets properly meant that if the piped system was not installed most houses would have to do without flushing lavatories.’
- ‘They park behind the cottages on the back lane, which was constructed to allow night-soil wagons to collect the waste from the one-time earth closets.’
- ‘We lived in a one-room bedsit, shared a kitchen, had no bathroom and used an outdoor earth closet adjoining the pigsty.’
- ‘There is no running water or electricity and sanitary arrangements consist of outside earth closets.’
- ‘His duties consisted of grooming the magistrate's horse, cleaning out the stable, cutting firewood and keeping clean the dry earth closet out in the yard.’
- ‘I think there was an earth closet outside actually.’
- ‘It is a people's history’ beginning in a world of horse-drawn carriages, earth closets and hiring fairs.’
- ‘The house, while still very rustic, is a far cry from the early days of an earth closet up the garden, outdoor shower behind a large rock and hauling every drop of water out of the well by bucket.’
- ‘During this period people used earth closets, chamber pots, close stools; open defecation remained.’
earth closet/ˈərTH ˌkläzət/
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