Yes, it may seem like a silly question, but believe it or not, there is quite an interesting history behind that seldom talked about plumbing fixture that is a necessity in our daily lives. The beginning of the toilet started centuries ago, dating back as early as the Roman Empire.
“Roman engineers understood some of the important aspects of basic sanitation, including efforts to keep human excrement away from sources of drinking water. This latrine, in Ostia Antica, fed directly into a sewer.”– Jan Theo Bakker/Internet Group Ostia
It is a known fact today that no society can be healthy without the proper disposal of human waste. However, only people in developed areas have the luxury of this common convenience.
It wasn’t until the late 19th century that the prototypes for the modern flush toilet became popular. The innovations included features like the water trap (kept sewer odors from rising into the home) and the U-bend (decreased the number of blockages) helped to increase the flush toilet’s appeal. – National Library of Medicine
If you are interested in learning more about the history of the toilet, take a look at this great slideshow on ScientificAmerican.com.