Sunday, February 13, 2011
Housing in Ancient Egypt
Houses in Ancient Egypt were made out of mud bricks. Mud was in abundance after the annual flood. Brick makers placed the mud into wooden molds and let them bake and harden in the sun. After hardening, the bricks were stacked to be used for building.
The homes of the wealthy were made of double-thick walls that increased the security of the house. The homes of the poor were only one brick thick.
The average Egyptian home had four rooms—a central room with smaller rooms joined to it. The central room was usually higher than the other rooms so that small openings for air could be placed high in the wall. The average person had four rooms in the house.
A family spent most of their time in the central room and used it for sleeping quarters at night. Off of this central room was a kitchen and another room that was used for storage or as an extra bedroom. Off the street was an entry room, which led into the central room.
A nobleman’s house also had a central room in its building plan. There were more rooms surrounding the central room in a nobleman’s home, and the furniture was much more ornate. Flooring was made of mud tiles or covered with a plaster-like material.
Suitable wood for building was very rare in Ancient Egypt. Much of the wood had to be imported since the trees that grew naturally in the dry Egyptian climate did not produce good boards. Wood was used to support doorways, steps, and ceilings.
The roof of a house was frequently used as living space in Egypt, since the insides of houses were dimly lit. Stairs to the roof were part of most every home.