Meaning of jakes in English:


Pronunciation /dʒeɪks/


  • A toilet, especially an outdoor one.

    ‘A jakes, of course, was the Elizabethan word for a mouldy toilet.’
    • ‘Nothing fancy, just a long drop, probably leading to a cistern that served several other jakes, but it was a luxury here.’
    • ‘Bloom kicks open "the crazy door of the jakes." In the cobwebbed privacy of the biffy with "the stench of mouldy limewash and stale cobwebs" Bloom "eases himself".’
    • ‘You're told about table manners to relieve yourself in a jakes above a stream.’
    • ‘Out with the boss for a power lunch? Don't excuse yourself to use the "rest room", how dull: announce that you are headed for the jakes!’
    lavatory, bathroom, facilities, urinal, privy, latrine, outhouse


Mid 16th century perhaps from the given name Jacques, or as the genitive of the pet name Jack (see jack).