Ok saw on Facebook something about how toilet paper wasn't invented till 1880's and that made me think is that true and if so what was used before that so I have done a little research and this is what I found out
Toilet paper as we know it round and printed was invented around 1880 by the Scott paper company and when it was first brought out the Scott company was too embarrassed to put their name on their product, as the concept of toilet paper was a sensitive subject at the time so they customised it for their customers.
The first reference to toilet paper is way back in the 6th century AD in 589 AD the scholar-official Yan Zhitui wrote about the use of toilet paper.
"Paper on which there are quotations or commentaries from the Five Classics or the names of sages, I dare not use for toilet purposes".
During the later Tang Dynasty (618–907 AD), an Arab traveller to China in the year 851 AD remarked:
"...they [the Chinese] do not wash themselves with water when they have done their necessities; but they only wipe themselves with paper."
It was during the 14th century that there was an annual manufacturing of toilet paper amounting in ten million packages of between 1,000 and 10,000 sheets of toilet paper for the general use of the imperial court.
Now let's move onto a bit more modern times a man by the name of Joseph Gayetty is credited with inventing the modern commercially available toilet paper in the United States in 1857, his toilet paper was available up until the 1920's.
His Medicated Paper was sold in packages of flat sheets, watermarked with the inventor's name, his advertising tagline was “the greatest necessity of the age Gayetty's medicated paper for the water-closet.
Nowadays there are twenty-six billion roll of toilet paper sold in America each year. On average people use 8.6 sheets of toilet paper each time they go to the toilet, a total of 57 sheets per day.
Here is Australia we have toilet paper rolls but in some countries they don't have rolls of toilet paper in Taiwan it comes in square sheets instead of rolls and is stored in a plastic box with a lid .
So I guess you are wondering what people used before the invention of toilet paper as we know it, well I will tell you what I have found out about that as well.
- Wealthy Romans -Wool, rosewater
- Public Restrooms in Ancient Rome- A sponge soaked in salt water, on the end of a stick
- Wealthy French – lace, wool and hemp; bidet
- Middle Ages – hayballs, a scraper/gompf stick kept in a container in the privy
- Early Americans – rags, newsprint, paper from catalogues, corncobs, and leaves
- Viking Age/England- discarded sheep and lambs wool
- Hawaiians – coconut shells
- Eskimos – snow and Tundra moss
- India – your left hand and water
- Commoners – Defecating in the river is very common
- Sailors from Spain/Portugal – frayed end of an old anchor line
- Medieval Europe- Straw, hay, grass, gompf stick
- United States – Corn cobs, Sears Roebuck catalogue, mussel shell, newspaper, leaves, sand
- British Lords – pages from a book
- Elite citizens – Hemp & wool