Return to the The Garden Party Forum | Post a Follow-Up

How do you define it?

Posted by gandle 4 NE (My Page) on
Sun, May 8, 11 at 17:43

The word -cottage-, one of our dictionarys says a hut or vacation home. Another says a small house. I confess I've probably never used the word at all but I'm reading a book by P.D. James and some of the English terms elude me. They mention living in a squat. What in he!! is a squat? Just about all of the Brit-isms I can at least guess at by where they are used but some I have no idea.

I suppose an idealistic picture forms in my mind of a cozy small house surounded by gardens and that would be a cottage.

Oh well, we have cottage pudding and cottage cheese but I know what those are

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: How do you define it?

Oh do I ever love PD James.I've read all her books and some of them twice.I guess I've grown up with the term cottage because it was used in fairy tales a lot and the pictures always showed it to be a little house tucked in the woods,with lots of flowers around it.The English cottages I really liked when we were there were usually small,made of beautiful weathered stone and dripped charm with all the greenery.There is even a magazine out on the stands here called Cottage living,or something like that. I think a lot of us would love a small cottage somewhere.A squat as far as I know is just an abandoned building where people go to live if they don't want to pay any rent. Sometimes they get evicted and some times they don't. ( I Googled this) I'll bet Sara could clear this one up. So which James book are you reading?

RE: How do you define it?

Sometimes, language can be confusing.

We have a neighbor from England that planted a cottage garden in her front yard, full of flowers, roses and herbs. Our houses are not cottages (small houses) by any means,but she managed to bring a memory from her homeland and plant it here in Silicon Valley.

There is a new housing development going up on the last piece of farm land in our neighborhood. Some of the plots have room for a Casita (small house)next to the main house. There is a main room, and a bathroom. There is a small area in the main room with a counter, some drawers, a built in wine chiller, but no sink nor a stove. I fully expected a Casita to be fully functional as a small house, but the real estate agent said the zoning code prevented them from including these items.

RE: How do you define it?

  • Posted by lilod NoCal/8 (My Page) on
    Sun, May 8, 11 at 20:29

Housing terms are confusing a lot of times. I live in a manufactured home on a permanent foundation, I call it my "not so mobile" home, there are some that call it a trailer and some call it a house. There are times I call it a shack, but whatever it's called, I am comfortable and it is small enough I can keep it up and have time for gardening or writing or reading and it is not going to go anywhere.

RE: How do you define it?

To me a cottage is a small house, equivalent to one of the earlier Cape Cod houses but with equally slanted roof, a live-in kitchen, a small parlor and bedroom downstairs and a room under the roof. Of course it has to have a cellar and a flower(cottage)garden in the front and a kitchen garden in the rear and flower boxes at the window. The walls are all stone, sometimes stuccoed and whitewashed.
It has a tile or slate roof. Houses of this type you find all over Europe.
A squat is a empty house or apartment which is used by mostly indigent people as lodging for what ever times they can live there (squatters).

RE: How do you define it?

Reading "The Murder Room". Thanks all for the definitions.

RE: How do you define it?

  • Posted by tibs 5/6 OH (My Page) on
    Mon, May 9, 11 at 7:38

Just google the word and you can get definitions of all sorts of words. I realazied I tend to use a lot of out-of-date slang when I see blank looks in the younger generation's eyes. The latest was Phooey. A comoon expression used by Nero Wolfe mysteries.

I enjoy reading Nigel Colburn's blog Silvertreedaze, He is a curmudgeon of a british gardener/writer and always has all these british expressions that are so, well, expressive.

RE: How do you define it?

I was just sure Sheila or Sara would clear it up. Hm.

I use phooey all the time. Makes older people laugh.

RE: How do you define it?

A Squat might be what we would call a "flat" like a one or two room apartment.

 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!

Return to the The Garden Party Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Please review our Rules of Play before posting.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.

Learn more about in-text links on this page here