Basins / Washbasins / Basins were originally referred
to as 'lavatories', from the Latin, 'lavare', meaning
'to wash'. People began euphemistically to say that
they were "going to the lavatory" (i.e.
to wash their hands) when in truth they intended to
visit the W.C.. By the mid-twentieth century, the
word had become so synonymous with the Water Closet
that since then most people have considered 'lavatory'
the correct term!
in our early catalogues, washbasins are found under
the subject heading 'Lavatories'.
more confusingly, the W.C. is often referred to as
a 'Pedestal basin'! However, in America, 'lavatory'
is still used for the Wash-hand Basin.
W.C. is still called a "W.C." although many
in the U.S. call it a "Crapper", after our
For a number of other similar, little known facts, see here.