Beyond the lavatory

ironman2012

Senior Member
Chinese
Hi,

At an enormous public fair in London in 1851:
In Jennings' exhibit, a woman first entered a reception area and paid a penny to view the loo. Then she entered into the lavatory and was greeted by a row of sinks, much like in today's bathrooms. A matron took the ticket, answered any questions, and kept things tidy. Beyond the lavatory was a row of lovely toilets known as "closet rooms."

(This comes from theweek.com A brief history of the ladies' bathroom by Therese Oneill on May 12, 2016)

Does the blue part mean "on the further side in the lavatory" or "outside the lavatory"?

Thanks in advance!
 
  • Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    You walk past the lavatory to reach the closet rooms. So ... on the other side of the lavatory.

    Added:

    From the article:
    In Jennings' exhibit, a woman first entered a reception area and paid a penny to view the loo. Then she entered into the lavatory and was greeted by a row of sinks, much like in today's bathrooms. A matron took the ticket, answered any questions, and kept things tidy. Beyond the lavatory was a row of lovely toilets known as "closet rooms."

    The "lavatory" seems to be the area with sinks where you washed your hands (as etb notes below).


    The picture accompanying the article doesn't seem to match the description.
     

    entangledbank

    Senior Member
    English - South-East England
    This appears to be using the original sense of 'lavatory', which is "a place to wash (the hands) in": either a basin/sink, or a room containing one. Later 'lavatory' was used as a euphemism for the actual toilet, its usual sense today. Here there is one room containing sinks and then inner rooms containing toilets.
     
    Last edited:

    Barque

    Senior Member
    Tamil
    I'm not sure how to interpret your diagram but if you click on your link and look at the photo, the area with the open space and the chairs and basins on the side is the lavatory. The row of cubicles is across the lavatory from where the photographer was standing.
     
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