bathroom

Du_sud

Senior Member
Brazilian Portuguese
Hello everybody!

What does one call, in a (big) house, a room with just the basin (sink?) and toilet, but no shower?
It is usually a room for guests to use (who just come to a party, for example) easily reached from any social part of the house.

Thanks to all.
 
  • JamesM

    Senior Member
    In the U.S. it could be called a "half-bath" (or "half bath" with no hyphen), especially in real estate listings, or occasionally a "powder room", especially if the room is directly off the living room or entryway to the house.

    I wouldn't say, "the half bath is just down the hall". :) I would say, "The powder room/bathroom is just down the hall." I've never heard "half bath" used in conversation outside of a real estate context.
     

    Harry Batt

    Senior Member
    USA English
    The half bath is often placed in the basement of a home where there is also an extra bedroom paneled in knotty pine or cedar. It is placed in the basement because it is easier and cheaper for the plumber to install the fixtures beneath the first floor bathroom than to place them in the upstairs, apart from the bathroom.
     

    Joelline

    Senior Member
    American English
    If I have guests at the house, and I'm speaking to a man, I just say the "bathroom" is the second door on your left. If I'm speaking to a woman, I would probably say, "The powder room" is the second door on your left. If I'm speaking to a family member (residing in the house), I'd say, "Honey, the toilet in the guest bath won't stop running. Can you check it out?"
     

    jamesjiao

    Senior Member
    New Zealand English and Mandarin Chinese
    I have heard (not an exhaustive list): Toilet, bathroom and restroom.
     
    Toilet or loo would be the standard usage in BE. The hand basin doesn't seem to make any difference. I have a feeling that unless a proper bathroom is next door, there always IS a hand basin in such a toilet.

    Bathroom
    can be used euphemistically as well in conversation, but it would be confusing in a property description for example.

    Restroom
    and powder-room sound completely AE to me. Never even heard of a half-bath.

    In addition to the more colloquial/slangy usages mentioned above by out2lnch, the most common BE one is definitely bog as in Can I use your bog?. It's crude but not star-rated.
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Half-bath is unheard of in my part of the world. Apart from that, what a bizarre expression :)
    I agree with MagdaDH and Rover_KE for the BE versions.

    << The topic is the name of the room.
    The huge range of words associated with the functions performed in the room has already been demonstrated in several threads and need not be repeated here.
    panj >>
     

    emma42

    Senior Member
    British English
    Yes, it should be remembered that BE and AE often employ very different terms for the room where the bath is, or the toilet.

    Often, a second small "toilet room" will be found downstairs in a British home. It will usually be called "the downstairs toilet/loo".
     

    Thomas Tompion

    Senior Member
    English - England
    I'm surprised that no BE speaker has mentioned the lavatory. Many people regard toilet or loo as an euphemism too far. The lavatory in a modern house will always have a washbasin, and if the facilities are more extensive, then other words become appropriate, as other people have explained.
     

    emma42

    Senior Member
    British English
    I might be wrong, but I view "lavatory" as rather old-fashioned and not used half as much as "toilet" or "loo" nowadays. Except, perhaps, in Lancashire.
     

    Loob

    Senior Member
    English UK
    Not sure why you mention Lancashire, emma. TT is a long way from there :)

    "Downstairs loo" gets my vote, definitely...
     

    Thomas Tompion

    Senior Member
    English - England
    There's a strong social element in it too, Emma. Remember the Oxford scout who said that there'd been a terrible storm in the night and it had flooded out the scouts' bogs, the undergraduates' lavatories, and the dons' toilets. These days, if he were socially aware, he might reverse the order of the last two.

    My neighbour's children won't say toilet to mean lavatory, and they are far from old-fashioned; they are distressingly illiberal about people who say loo. I think this is a subject on which it is very hard to give advice on correct practice in Britain; so much depends on who you are talking to.
     

    emma42

    Senior Member
    British English
    There's a strong social element in it too, Emma. Remember the Oxford scout who said that there'd been a terrible storm in the night and it had flooded out the scouts' bogs, the undergraduates' lavatories, and the dons' toilets. These days, if he were socially aware, he might reverse the order of the last two.

    .
    Love it, TT! No, Loob, the reason I mentioned Lancashire was nothing to do with TT, but with older members of my family from Lancs, who say "lavatory".

    Anyway, point taken, and lessons learned. Now, I'm off to the bog for a nice sit down and a bit of a read.
     
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