Sunday, June 25, 2017

Old Persian houses

Persian architecture shows Iran’s amazing art, philosophy and traditional beliefs. According to the introvert and intimate spirit of Iranian people, old architectures used to build their houses with a simple appearance on the outside, while inside the buildings and their intimate spaces used to be built so detailed. 

Persian architectures used to build monuments of each city considering a technique called “vernacular architecture”. For example, in desert cities like Yazd and Kerman, soil and mud and straw are used in building houses, in mountainous cities like Kermanshah, buildings are mostly stone made, while in northern cities, wood is widely used.

In the following you can get familiar with components of a Persian house:

_Koocheh: Alleys of historical texture in cities of Iran lead us to the old Persian houses. These narrow alleys are surrounded by high walls of the houses because people used to walk or ride bicycles and horses and tall walls would give them a pleasant shadow.'

a narrow alley in Iran
a narrow alley in Iran
_Dar-e-voroudi: Entrance door is made of wood with two pieces of metal hanging on it, which are used for knocking. One knocking tool is used by the women and the other one is used by the men. Doors are usually topped with a small arch, ornamented with great tile work boasting a holy phrase or a verse from Quran.

_Hashti (octagon formed): Entering the doorway, we step in an octagon or square shaped room with a low-level ceiling. This space is built for ramifying and leading the guest to different parts of the house or even to different houses of an extended family, through the walkways. In some big houses servants and housemen used to stay in rooms around the Hashti. Another use of the Hashti is prohibiting the guest from entering the intimate part of the house at once.

_Hayat: is the courtyards with a lower surface than the whole house to keep the temperature a bit lower, there is a little pond (howz) in the center of Hayat which is colored in Persian blue and is known as the heart of old Persian houses because of water’s holiness in Iran and also positive effect of water in making the weather cooler. This pool is surrounded by little gardens, plants and flower pots, adding pleasant colors and aromas to the courtyard, and making the whole house fresh and a lovely place for living.

courtyard of a Persian house
courtyard of a Persian house
_Talar: This is a great hall ornamented with tile workings and mirror decorations used for hosting respectable guests. This can be considered as the most fabulous and luxurious part of an old Persian house. Mirror decorations give the hall so much light and sparkle that makes every visitor feel excitedly amazed. This hall is faced to the courtyard with 5 or 7 doors named (Panj-dari or Haft- darei) decorated with eye catching, colorful stained glasses, which spread colorful lights in the hall during sunny days.

_Otaghe- korsi: This is a room that the family members gathered in during winter and cold nights. Whether wealthy or poor, all the families in cold cities of Iran, used to have a room named Korsi in their houses.  This is called” Korsi” because of the heating system built in it. A big square table with warm coal under and a big blanket on top that family could sit around. “Korsi” rooms aren’t usually decorated like Talars but many old stories and fun conversations have been heard in these rooms.

_ Matbakh: The kitchen of Old Persian houses had been a rectangle big space, near the water borehole and the cistern. A place for cooking various foods and baking bread for the family.


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