Here's a fun fact you might not have known about appliances: they rendered household servants largely unnecessary! In the 19th century and earlier, servants weren't just for the rich. Most middle-class households had at least a cook, and often a housemaid as well. This was because laundry involved a lot more than putting soap in a machine and turning it on, and cooking more than sticking a pre-made pizza in the oven. Housework involved chopping wood, carrying coal, keeping fires burning, extensive food preparation from scratch, hand-washing of clothes and hanging them on a line to dry ... We get tired just thinking about it!
Things have changed! Now, keeping the house warm just means turning up the thermostat -- or having your smartphone do it before you get home! But appliances aren't just labor-savers. Specialty devices, like pasta makers, juicers and espresso machines, make it possible to pursue special interests, from fitness (that wheatgrass juicer) to high cuisine (a home pasta maker) to wine (a special refrigerator that keeps it in the 40-55 degree range).
There's truly a dazzling variety of household appliances out there. How many of them do you recognize, and how familiar are you with what they do? We've created a quiz so you can find out. We'll describe the appliance in one sentence, and you tell us what it is. Settle in with a glass of your own homemade mango-orange juice and test your savvy now!
How much do you know about how car engines work? And how much do you know about how the English language works? And what about how guns work? How much do you know? Lucky for you, HowStuffWorks is about more than providing great answers about how the world works. We are also here to bring joy to your day with fun quizzes, compelling photography and fascinating listicles. Some of our content is about how stuff works. Some is about how much you know about how stuff works. And some is just for fun! Because, well, did you know that having fun is an important part of how your brain works? Well, it is! So keep reading!