Holy Crap?

In 2000, Thomas Crapper, the Victorian sanitary engineer often credited with the invention of the flush toilet, was immortalised, as part of a commemoration of local achievements, by St. Lawrence's church, near Doncaster in the north of England.

The tribute? A stained glass window incorporating the "tastefully darkened silhouette" of a toilet!

["Officials thought a white loo might stand out too much in the window and become the focus of attention instead of Christ in Majesty," Tim Sweed, one of the project's coordinators explained, "so it was portrayed in a dark silhouette... Nobody has told us that it demeans the church or the glory of God," he added. "They can see the significance of including Crapper in a celebration of the Millennium."]

[Though he held nine patents (four for improvements to drains, three for water closets, one each for manhole covers and pipe joints), the most famous product attributed to Crapper -- the "Silent Valveless Water Waste Preventer," a symphonic discharge system allowing a toilet to flush effectively when the cistern was only half full -- was in fact invented by Albert Giblin.]

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