It is likely that the explanation of the term , and who was, has been lost to history. claim it as an and trace its name to a product – Ovington's $8.50 mahogany "Revolving Server or Lazy Susan" – advertised in a 1917 , but its use well predates both the advertisement and (probably) the country.
A Lazy Susan (or Lazy Suzy) is a turntable (rotating ) placed on a or to aid in distributing . Lazy Susans may be made from a variety of materials but are usually , , or . They are usually circular and placed in the center of a circular table to share dishes easily among diners. Owing to the nature of , especially , they are common at formal Chinese restaurants both on and .
Part of the mystery arises from the variety of devices that were grouped under the term (today written ). An early 18th-century article in describes how silent machines had replaced over-garrulous servants at some tables and, by the 1750s, was praising the "foreign" but discreet devices in verse. It is, however, almost certain that the devices under discussion were wheeled similar to those introduced by to the United States from , where they were known as . At some point during or before the 3rd quarter of the 18th century, the name dumb waiter also began to be applied to rotating trays. (Jefferson never had a Lazy Susan at but he did construct a box-shaped rotating book stand and, as part of serving "in the French style", employed a revolving dining-room door whose reverse side supported a number of shelves.) Finally, by the 1840s, Americans were applying the term to as well. The success of 's 1887 then popularized this usage, replacing the previous meanings of "dumbwaiter."
As traditional Lazy Susans are still made out of wood, we see them manufactured in the modern age out of all kinds of materials like; glass, granite and metal.