dressing room


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A dressing room adjoining a domestic room (1.1)
Ballerinas Ursula Cain and Brigitta Sinon in the dressing room (sense 1.2) of the Leipzig Opera, Leipzig, East Germany, photographed on 2 October 1960 just before the inauguration of the new opera house
A dressing room, changing room, locker room (1.3)



dressing room (plural dressing rooms)

  1. A room used for dressing or changing clothes.
    • 1949 March, Bureau of Human Nutrition and Home Economics, Agricultural Research Administration, United States Department of Agriculture; Production and Marketing Administration, U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, “Workers' Personal Belongings”, in Storage for School Lunch Food and Supplies (Program Aid; no. 63), Washington, D.C.: U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, OCLC 77070870, page 11:
      The storeroom is not a suitable dressing room. A separate room is needed where workers may change from street clothes to uniforms and where they may keep their personal belongings.
    1. A small room adjoining a domestic bedroom where people may dress or undress in privacy.
      Synonyms: (US, CA) walk-in closet, (UK) walk-in wardrobe
      • [1688], “Sir Stephen Fox Knight, Deposeth”, in Depositions Taken the 22d. of October 1688. before the Privy-Council and Peers of England; Relating to the Birth of the (then) Prince of Wales. Published by His Majesty's Special Command, [Edinburgh]: [Printed by the heir of Andrew Anderson], OCLC 606591965, page 24:
        That on Sunday the 10th. of June laſt paſt, about 9 of the Clock, as he came out of the Chappel at Whitehall, after the firſt Sermon, hearing that the Queen was in Labour, he, the Deponent, made Haſte to St. James’s, becauſe in waiting, as an Officer of the green Cloth, to warn the ſeveral Servants below Stairs to be in their Offices, that upon that Occaſion there might not happen to be any Thing wanting of Houſehold Proviſions and Neceſſaries under his, this Deponent's Command; but firſt going up by the Back-Stairs into her Majeſty’s Dreſſing-Room; and being there with many others, he heard her Majeſty cry out very loudly; [] and as this Deponent was returning back to the Queen’s ſaid Dreſſing-Room, he was told a Prince was born: []
      • 1864, Robert Kerr, “An Ordinary Dressing-room”, in The Gentleman's House; or, How to Plan English Residences, from the Parsonage to the Palace; with Tables of Accommodation and Cost, and a Series of Selected Plans, London: John Murray, Albemarle Street, OCLC 614299021, part II (Exposition of Plan as now Practised), division I (The Family Apartments), section III (The Sleeping Rooms), pages 150–151:
        The principle which governs the providing of Dressing-rooms seems to be this. [] Then comes the case of one Dressing-room, by which it may be said the gentleman's toilet is taken out of the lady's way, she retaining the Bed-room; and this admits of the attendance of a lady's-maid. Then follows the case of two Dressing-rooms, which in its simplest form supposes the lady not to give up the use of the Bedroom for dressing, but to make use of the inner retiring-room for washing.
      • 1858, Walter Scott, “Introduction—(1832.)”, in Redgauntlet (Waverley Novels), volume I, household edition, Boston, Mass.: Ticknor and Fields, OCLC 10954193, pages 10–11:
        I received a note from my Lady Primrose, who desired to see me immediately. As soon as I waited on her, she led me into her dressing-room, and presented me to――
    2. A room in a theatre or other performance venue in which performers may change costumes and apply makeup.
      • 1784, Thomas Sheridan, “Section VI. Private Memoirs of Swift”, in The Life of the Rev. Dr. Jonathan Swift, Dean of St. Patrick's, Dublin, volume I, London: Printed for C[harles] Bathurst [et al.], OCLC 817759520, page 283:
        Nothing has more excited the curioſity of mankind at all times, than that deſire which prevails of prying into the ſecret actions of great and illustrious characters; ariſing in ſome, from a too general ſpirit of envy, which hopes to find ſomething in their private conduct that may ſully the luſtre of their publick fame, and ſo bring them down more to a level with themſelves: and in others, of a more candid diſposition, that they might form right judgements of their real characters; as too many, like actors in a theatre, only aſſume one when they appear on the ſtage of the world, which they put off, together with their robes and plumes, when retired to the dreſſing room.
      • 2011, Jonathan Croall, “A Prince on Broadway”, in John Gielgud: Matinee Idol to Movie Star, London: Methuen Drama, →ISBN:
        A reporter found him [John Gielgud] in a silk dressing-gown in his dressing-room, 'receiving the congratulations of a gallery of men', and clearly exultant: 'The actor was talking in quick, excited sentences, and it was obvious that the impetuous Hamlet had not yet subsided into the usual British reserve.'
    3. (UK) A changing room at a recreational or sports venue.
      Synonyms: changing room, (US, CA) locker room

Alternative formsEdit


  • (room adjoining a domestic bedroom): toilet room (historical)

Derived termsEdit


Further readingEdit