lazy Susan

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See also: lazy susan and Lazy Susan


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Uncertain, but probably a generic name like Jane, in reference to the device replacing a servant at table. Earliest attestation the 1903 Boston Journal, which credits local carpenter John Laurie as "the resuscitator of 'Lazy Susan'". Almost certainly not named in 'honor' of Thomas Jefferson or Edison's daughters named Susan.


lazy Susan (plural lazy Susans)

  1. A rotating tray (turntable) used on tables and counters for serving condiments or food.
    Synonym: dumbwaiter
  2. A rotating set of shelves used to minimize inaccessible space, usually employed in corner kitchen cabinets.
    • 2002, Terrell Dixon, City Wilds: Essays and Stories about Urban Nature (page 279)
      The “ant-proof cooler” was a small larderlike cupboard in the kitchen, with a circular metal shelving unit, a series of round trays which revolved like a lazy Susan.
  3. (finance) Synonym of round trip (form of barter involving selling and buying back)