[Ads-l] Generic Washlets

Benjamin Barrett gogaku at IX.NETCOM.COM
Fri Dec 19 20:42:09 UTC 2014

This morning, I talked on the phone to the plumber who was working on my 
toilet and he referred to my "washlet" even though I have a competitor's 
product, not a Toto Washlet.

Not on the Oxford Dictionary site, washlet is listed on Wiktionary 
(https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/washlet) and Wikipedia 
(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Washlet) as a genericized term, just like 
kleenex and coke. They do not offer an alternative term. Looking at the 
USPTO website, I see terms like "sanitary washing device."

The Toto USA site (http://www.totousa.com/people-first-innovation) says 
that the Washlet came out in 1988. The only thing earlier that I can 
find is Trademark applications, the earliest on May 27, 1986:


The others can be found by entering "washlet" at 

As an aside, there is an instance of "washlet" that occurs in an 
archaeological context in perhaps 1981 or 1983: http://bit.ly/1Ce0rbI.

Benjamin Barrett
Formerly of Seattle, WA

Learn Ainu! https://sites.google.com/site/aynuitak1/home

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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