How did 18th century society women go to the toilet?
How did women relieve themselves when wearing those enormous 18th-century dresses? The answer is a ‘Bourdaloue’. It was a boat-shaped vessel with a raised lip at one end and handle at the other, a bit like a gravy boat and the maid would be expected to carry this for her mistress and empty it after use.
Why was it called Bourdaloue? Some say it was named after a Jesuit priest, Louis Bourdaloue who was reknowned for giving long speeches that would mean ladies would have to wait for hours before they could go and relieve themselves.