smoking room

Mark Mandel thnidu at GMAIL.COM
Sat Dec 15 21:15:52 UTC 2007

I'm visiting the Perelman Building of the Phila. Art Museum, and they have a
display on the history of the building itself. One slide shows the original
floor plan when it was built as the Fidelity Mutual Insurance Building, and
I noticed the "Women's Rest Room" next to the "Men's Smoking Room". Was
"smoking room" ever used as "rest room" still is, or "ladies' lounge" used
to be?

OED has only "A room in a house, hotel, club, etc., set apart as a place for
smoking in" (1689-), and "1689 *:* a room (as in a hotel or club)
set apart for smokers", and it could well have been that: I didn't see a
"Men's Rest Room", but the slide was up for only 5-7 seconds.

m a m

The American Dialect Society -

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