TRADITIONAL HOUSE-TIGRAY

Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front

Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

the tigray farmers house
• the economy
-practice sedentary farming, raise a variety of
crops and keep different kinds of animals.
-have a high standard of agricultural practice.Picture5
• Cultural values
– these values are seen mostly in the type of functional organization that they use
a) the midirbet
there are strong family ties and the midirbet is the
all purpose living and sleeping area where the family eats,
communes and sleeps
b) the wushate
an area for storage and cooking.
there are well defined partitions using kofo: a string of built in grain stores
the tigray farmers house is rich in built in furniture like
-medeb: a sitting bench, running along the walls
– niidi: a bed, high platform built adjacent to walls

Picture6

– ni’idi merauti: a married coulples bed given privacy by
a)built at a hieght of five feet.
b) a small stone fence built around it
• physical identity

Shape: rectangular with flat roof
Surface quality:

the masonry walls are dressed and painted to give a smooth appearance.
• The climate
-tigray is found in the arid zone of Ethiopia where it is mostly hot and dry.
-In response to the harsh diurnal temperature differences, thick stocky masonry
construction is employed
Material
– the abundance of various types of rocks an d the scarcity of other materials caused tigray
Farmers to be characterized by masonry construction

• Construction
monkey head system of construction
large well dressed stones at the corners and small stones else
where. Joined together with chika(mud), a kind of earth mixed with water and
sometimes reinforced with straw.
these walls are strengthened at narrow intervals with long,
squared timbers, short, round cross pieces hold these in place.
the protruding sections of the cross pieces are termed as monkey
heads.

Picture8
II The tigray- chief’s house
• the economy
– residences for the rich, governers, high priests and soldiers)
-the amount of material and specialized details required make
it a very expensive prospects
• Cultural values
– the area is around axum where people
are proponents of early ethiopian
christian culture.
-the four central pillars defined space the maqdes into which
women are in some cases not allowed
– great importance placed in the meqdes
• Physical identity

Picture7

surface quality:
the surface could have rough texture or be white washed
massing and shape:
the long two storied cylinder is topped by a very wide almost flat cone like roofs with extending eaves.
spatial concepts :
the space seems to be very central in natural
• The climate
arid climate in forcing masonry construction.
• The materials
® -Blackstone (basalt, found in abundance in the northern provinces) is used for foundation.
® -trachyte,a soft ,greyish rock is used for the main wall.
® -chika (MUD) is used as mortar.
-the windows, doors,lintels, floors and ceilings are carved out of wood and make up the main expenses for these houses.
construction
The foundation trenches are dug with generous dimensions and filled in with basalt which doesn’t absorb water
– Simple masonry construction is used for the walls with ends at every floor with a shelf,to stop rain from washing down the walls and damaging the chika(MUD) mortar.

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