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The History of the Toilet

Orlando PlumberThe toilet is one of the most important parts of the home. It is a part of everyday life that many people take for granted, one that has an extensive history of development and use. From humble beginnings, people all throughout history have developed ways to make the toilet easier to use and more convenient to install.

After so many developments in the ancient world, toilets and plumbing systems continued to be used throughout history. During the Middle Ages, toilets began to experience a series of changes that would lead to the modern plumbing systems used in households all over the world today.


Garderobes were what toilets that were used in the Middle Ages. These were commonly found in upper class dwellings and castles, and were easy to install and use. They usually consisted of flat pieces of wood or stone that contained one or several holes over which users could sit.

These holes were connected to chutes that would take the waste outside of the manor or castle. Sometimes these chutes would lead to moats and other bodies of water, where the waste could be discarded and forgotten.

Portable Pots

No matter how many stationary innovations were made to plumbing systems, one of the most efficient and commonly used toilet systems were chamber pots. These, as the name implies, were simple pots that were kept for use as a toilet system. They were used for their portability and easy waste removal. During the middle ages, these pots were kept around the home, though the waste disposal was not always sanitary.

Before earlier civilizations began to notice the link between disease and harmful bacteria that comes from waste, users would simply throw the contents of the pots out into the streets. Sometimes these larger pots were left outside for fullers to take away.

Orlando Toilet-HistoryEarly European Changes

As cities grew larger and more people began to live closer together, chamber pots became more and more important for people to have. These chamber pots slowly began to become more decorative, made from materials such as porcelain and metal.

They were stored to be dumped out, but as people began to modernize, these simple toilets were not enough to keep the accumulating waste from harming the quality of the city streets.

It was not until the 19th century that toilet experts began to develop covered sewage systems that evolved into modern plumbing.

If you live in the Orlando area, and are having toilet troubles, Call Shamrock Plumbing and Drain Cleaning at (407) 292-8881 and find out how you can get your toilet back!

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