What do you call the main room where the TV (if you have one) / sofas / easy chairs are?
We call it the living room (we also have a dining room), but in the UK it could also be called the lounge or the sitting room. What do you call it? If you're not native English speaking, what does the name translate to in your language?
When I was growing up, we had a living room with utilitarian furniture, and a front room with a 3-piece suit. The front room was so called because it was at the front of the house and the living room was where we lived (spent 90% of the time downstairs). We lived in a council house, and later in a similar terraced house, but I learnt that posh people would call their best room, the lounge.
Today, we have a dining room and a main room and we alternate between calling it the front room and the lounge depending on how posh we're feeling.
We call it "vardagsrum" (everyday room). We eat in the kitchen. Long ago, people used to have a "salong" or "finrum" (literally "fine room"). The best furniture was there, and the room was only used for guests.
We are famous for "Stockholm syndrome": "Q: Hey, what's up with Matt? His Dad is on social security, his mom got laid off, his sister's kids get free school lunches, he collects federal financial aid for college, and he only makes minimum wage working at Walmarts. Yet he keeps talking about how we need to cut taxes for the wealthy and quit spending so much on social programs. A: Yeah, he thinks he's going to be a millionaire soon. He's got Economic Stockholm Syndrome." (Urban Dictionary)
It's generally the 'living room'. And, yes, 'front room' is another term, as the front door tends to open in to that room.
In my current home, the front room contains both the living room and the dining room, the only space in the house with hardwood floors, with the remainder of the main floor being either softwood or vinyl flooring. The living room portion has the fireplace is furnished with the sofa, two leather chairs with ottomen, and a set of side tables, and the front door, while the dining room portion has the built-in hutch with doors and drawers and hosts the dining room table with six chairs and the entertainment center.
The house was built in 1922 as a two-bedroom bungalow with a single bath. Now it is a three-bedroom bungalow with two baths.
Long ago, people used to have a "salong" or "finrum" (literally "fine room"). The best furniture was there, and the room was only used for guests.
We had the same tradition. It was called the opkamer or uproom. I think that might be because it used to be a bit higher or with separate doors or something. It's weird to imagine though. Those houses back then were tiny and then you even decide to exclude a room from every day living.
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Yes, when I was a small child we had a 'front room' which we didn't really go into all that often, kept for best I suppose.
Then my mother had the front and back rooms knocked through to create a much larger space. We even had sliding doors between them, and a serving hatch put in between the kitchen and dining end. 70s home 'improvements'...
I had a friend in elementary school and I went and visited his house. All the furniture in their front room was covered with special clear plastic covers...the sofa, the chairs, the coffee table. He told me that it was only used when guests came over, and my friend was not allowed to sit on any of the items...he wasn't even really allowed in the room. I thought it quite strange.
"Living room", yes, but I'm surprised no one mentioned "family room". They're almost the same thing; depends on the family you grew up in, I suppose. In the houses I grew up in, the family [correction] living room was a large room with chairs and maybe a sofa but no TV, and the children were not encouraged to play in it. The family room had much of the same furniture but also a TV and/or a radio and it's where the kids spread out and made a mess on the floor. Less formal, obviously. I think the distinction between the two arose only as I got older; that may be because the term "family room" came into vogue only in the '70s and '80s, or it may be because we started to save more money and could afford a house that had both. Seems to me when I was seven we didn't have a family room, only the living room.