Monday, August 26, 2013

Plucking a Rose

Around 1800, going to "pluck a rose" was a euphemism for ladies going to pee.

Wonder how ladies of Jane Austen's time (and before, and after) relieved themselves when away from home, swaddled in all that fine material?

They carried a gravy boat–like item called a bourdaloue which could be used away from home, at a ball, say, or in a carriage. 

"La Bourdaloue",  by French painter François Boucher

Or they used a"close stool": like a commode, with a chamber pot inside.

Maids (or indentured servants, or slaves, depending on where the lady lived) were on hand to dispose of the waste, probably into some sort of cesspit.


Zhoen said...

It's a pisser.

poodletail said...

Fascinating! But the bourdaloue looks to pretty to pee in.

bink said...

I suppose the lady's maid was the one actually carrying it around... or did homes, theaters, businesses, etc keep them on hand for visitors?