AskDefine | Define potty

Dictionary Definition

potty adj
1 (British informal) trivial; "potty little details"
3 stupid and confused; used especially of persons; "blathering like the addlepated nincompoop that you are"; "a confused puddingheaded, muddleheaded fellow"- Isaac Sterne [syn: addlebrained, addlepated, puddingheaded, muddleheaded]


1 a plumbing fixture for defecation and urination [syn: toilet, can, commode, crapper, pot, stool, throne]
2 a receptacle for urination or defecation in the bedroom [syn: chamberpot, thunder mug] [also: pottiest, pottier]

User Contributed Dictionary



  1. A chamberpot used by young children while learning control of their bladder and bowels.



  1. Insane.
    The noise that the neighbour's kids were making was driving Fred potty.



Extensive Definition

A chamber pot (also a john, a chamberpot, a thunder pot, a jordan, a po (from French "pot de chambre") or simply a potty) is a bowl-shaped container with a handle kept in the bedroom under a bed or in the cabinet of a nightstand and generally used as a urinal at night. In Victorian times, some chamber pots would be built into a cabinet with a closable cover.
Chamber pots, usually ceramic, often had lids.
A peculiar form of chamber pot, the Bourdaloue, was designed specifically for females. The oblong rectangle or oval shape of the vessel, sometimes with a higher front enabled the woman to urinate from a squatting or standing posture without much risk of mishap, and also to help deal with the clothing of the day. The name "Bourdaloue" allegedly comes from that of a famous French Catholic priest, Louis Bourdaloue (1632 - 1704), who delivered such long sermons that females of the aristocracy attending them had their maids bring in such pots discreetly under their dresses so that they could urinate without having to leave. However, this explanation is probably a myth.
Chamber pots remained in common use until the 19th century, when the introduction of inside water closets started to displace them.
Chamber pots continue in use today in countries lacking indoor plumbing such as rural areas of China, and have been redesigned as the bed pan for use with the very ill.
In North America, the affectionate term "potty" is often used when discussing the toilet with small children - such as during potty training. It is also usually used to refer to the small, toilet-shaped devices made especially for potty training, which are quite similar to chamber pots. These "potties" are used since it is difficult for children to get up onto the normal toilet; in addition the larger opening in the regular toilet is much too large for a child to sit comfortably over without falling in or some type of aid.
potty in Bavarian: Botschamperl
potty in Danish: Natpotte
potty in German: Nachttopf
potty in Spanish: Orinal
potty in Esperanto: Noktovazo
potty in French: Pot de chambre
potty in Scottish Gaelic: Amar-mùin
potty in Indonesian: Pispot
potty in Hebrew: סיר לילה
potty in Luxembourgish: Pottschamb
potty in Dutch: Po (voorwerp)
potty in Japanese: 便器
potty in Polish: Nocnik
potty in Portuguese: Penico
potty in Kölsch: Pißpott
potty in Russian: Ночной горшок
potty in Sicilian: Rinali
potty in Silesian: Nachtop
potty in Finnish: Potta
potty in Swedish: Potta
potty in Chinese: 馬桶

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

absurd, balmy, bananas, barmy, bats, batty, beany, bedpan, bonkers, buggy, bughouse, bugs, can, chamber, chamber pot, chemical closet, chemical toilet, commode, crackers, crapper, crazy, cuckoo, daffy, dippy, dotty, flaky, flipped, freaked-out, fruitcakey, fruity, gaga, goofy, harebrained, haywire, high-hat, inconsiderable, insane, insignificant, jerry, john, johnny, jordan, just plain nuts, kooky, latrine, loo, loony, loopy, minor, nuts, nutty, off the hinges, off the track, off the wall, petty, piss pot, pot, potty-chair, preposterous, privy, round the bend, screwball, screwballs, screwy, shoestring, silly, slaphappy, small, small-beer, snobby, snooty, stool, throne, thunder mug, toilet, trivial, unimportant, urinal, wacky, water closet
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