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Conservation Approaches to Earthen Architecture in Archaeological Contexts

Louise Cooke
Publication Year:
177pp. Illustrated throughout including 18 colour plates. With additional material online (Appendices and database)
ISBN 10:
BAR number:


This publication summarises research investigating approaches to the conservation and management of earthen architecture. A number of these different earth-building techniques also make use of earthen mortars and/or earth plasters or renders. In these different forms earth has been used as a building material for domestic, religious, burial, administrative, palatial and domestic structures for the last ten millennia - the legacy is both monumental and vernacular. This research explores these approaches to earthen architecture around the world, and with particular reference to the study area - Iran, Uzbekistan, and Turkmenistan. The different approaches to conservation and management are critiqued in relation to their practical effectiveness, relationshipto conservation theory, values of earthen architecture and sustainability. This study uses the identification of the materials and techniques used for the conservation and management of earthen architecture as a means to understand, articulate and explore attitudes and approaches to the building material, within the context of wider conservation and heritage theory. Part 1 examines earthen architecture, its study, use, physical properties and more abstract values. Part 2 examines conservation approaches to earthen architecture in archaeological contexts. The CD contains appendices of supporting data referred to in the main text.