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Roofs of ancient houses

Updated : 2015-02-26

Roofs of ancient houses

Hankou Pawnshop

There are several kinds of roots in ancient Chinese architectural styles. Briefly, these include, the ‘Wudian Roof’, the ‘Xieshan Roof’, the ‘Cuanjian Roof’, the ‘Yingshan Roof’ and the ‘Xuanshan Root’. Most roofs used in residents are the ‘Xuanshan Roof’ and the ‘Yingshan Roof’ while ancient houses in Jinjiang usually use the ‘Yingshan Roof’, which is also called ‘Baoguiqi’ in Chinese. Roofs of the back yard and the front yard using the ‘Yingshan Root’ consist of several parts. The middle part of the roof is much lower than those on the two sides. Each part of the roof is comprised of four or six vertical ridges, which produces a three dimensional effect.

Roofs of ancient houses

The peak of the house boasts a gentle curve and at the end of the roof, it divides into two parts, like the swallowtail. This gives it the name of swallowtail ‘Yanwei Ridge’, which adds vigor to the ancient houses. Some grand houses have specific designs to indicate the social status of owners or to prevent evil spirits from invading the houses.

Most roofs in ancient houses of Jinjiang are made from red curved tiles which have decorative markings on its edge. At the edge of roofs are downspouts which are called ‘Chuizhu’. Some houses use red tiles on the roofs while green glazed tiles are used in the eaves.

Roofs of ‘Dadongbi’ vary from other roofs in the house. Some take the shape a of saddle or a Chinese character while others are elliptical.

To ensure privacy, a drape or a bamboo curtain splint hangs in front of the master's rooms and servant's lodgings when they face the patio. On the roofs of these rooms are ventilators to let in some fresh air.




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