BUILDING (DK Eyewitness Books) by Philip Wilkinson

By Philip Wilkinson

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Next to the stamp is a modern leadglazed red earthenware tile that was made from it. Scrolls represent clouds Edge has crumbled away with time PHOENIX RISING Some of the finest tiles, often showing abstract patterns, were made in Islamic countries. They are still used to decorate the interior walls of many buildings. Sometimes the tiles were square, but often more intricate shapes were used, as with this star from 13th-century Persia. Crossshaped tiles would have been needed to fit between the stars.

A wooden molding called an architrave covers up this gap when fitted around the doorframe, and improves the door’s appearance. This design (right), with its circular roundels at the corners, became popular toward the end of the 18th century. BRACKET (below) Speculative building – when a developer builds houses for eventual sale – became popular in the early 18th century. Today, speculatively built houses are often constructed quickly, and much of the decoration is left to the future owners. But in the 18th century, speculative houses were as highly decorated as those built to order, with features such as this carved wooden bracket from a door case.

These extraordinary twisted columns at Ferrara cathedral, Italy, would not alone support the heavy load of the wall above. So the builders alternated them with the more usual straight columns, to strengthen the structure. The double-curved ogee arches, their points formed by two S-shaped curves, are also typical of the late Middle Ages. 33 Vaults F  , the easiest and strongest way of creating a DECORATING THE BOSS Where vaulting ribs met, masons fixed large stones called bosses. Bosses were often intricately carved, especially the largest one at the center of a roof.

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