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Bath pulteney bridge3.jpg


Middle English, from Old English bæth; akin to Old High German bad bath, Old High German bāen to warm


  • 1: a washing or soaking (as in water or steam) of all or part of the body
  • 2a : water used for bathing
b (1) : a contained liquid for a special purpose (2) : a receptacle holding the liquid
c (1) : a medium for regulating the temperature of something placed in or on it (2) : a vessel containing this medium
  • 3a : bathroom
b : a building containing an apartment or a series of rooms designed for bathing
c : spa 1 —usually used in plural
d British : swimming pool —often used in plural


Bathing is the washing or cleansing of the body in a fluid, usually water or an aqueous solution. It may be practiced for personal hygiene, religious ritual or therapeutic purposes or as a recreational activity.

Bathing can take place in any situation where there is water. It can take place in a bathtub or shower, or it can be in a river, lake, water hole, pool or the sea, or any other water receptacle. The term used to describe the act can vary. For example, a ritual religious bath is usually referred to as immersion, the use of water for therapeutic purposes can be called water treatment or hydrotherapy, and engaging in recreational water activities can be called swimming.

The intentional immersion of the body in any agent may be considered bathing, for example sunbathing is the "immersion" in sunlight.

There are towns which have become famous for their public baths, such as Bath (known during ancient Roman times as Aquae Sulis), a Roman city in England famous for healing hydrothermal springs. It was a popular resort town for the wealthy from Elizabethan to Georgian times. [1]