If You Lived Here
Houses of the WorldBook - 2011
Step into unique homes from around the world and discover the many fascinating ways in which people live and have lived. If you lived in the mountains of southern Spain, your bedroom might be carved out of a mountain. If you lived in a village in South Africa, the outside of your house might tell the story of your family. And if you lived in a floating green house in the Netherlands, you could rotate your house to watch both the sunrise and sunset.
With intricate bas-relief collages, Giles Laroche uncovers the reason why each home was constructed the way in which it was, then lets us imagine what it would be like to live in homes so different from our own. Showing the tremendous variety of dwellings worldwide--log cabins, houses on stilts, cave dwellings, boathouses, and yurts--this book addresses why each house is build the way that it is. Reasons--such as blending into the landscape, confusing invaders, being able to travel with one's home, using whatever materials are at hand--are as varied as the homes themselves.
List of Houses included:
Dogtrot log house, based on dogtrots built in the southern U.S.
Chalet, based on chalets built in the Austrian Alps.
Pueblo, Taos, New Mexico
Connected barn, based on connected barns common in northern New England.
Cave dwelling, Guadix, Andalucia, Spain
Palafitos (house on stilts), Chiloe Island, Chile
Palazzo Dario, Venice, Italy
Chateau La Brede, Bordeaux, France
Tulou, Hangkeng village, Yongding, China
Half-timbered houses, Miltenberg am Main, Germany
Greek island village houses, Astipalaia Island, Greece
Decorated houses of Ndebele, Pretoria, Transvaal, South Africa
Yurt, based on yurts in Mongolia and other parts of central Asia.
Airstream trailer, USA
Floating house, Middleburg, the Netherlands
Tree house, USA
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If you lived in a medieval castle, you would have to cross a drawbridge over a moat to reach your home. Once inside, there would be endless rooms and halls in which to play, and you could climb a tower to see for miles.
If you lived in a cave (which people have done for centuries, and still do today in some parts of the world), you would be known as a “troglodyte” (a cave dweller)! There would be no towers on your house, only the kitchen chimney poking up from the hillside above.
If you lived on the coast in a house on stilts, you could catch fish from your bedroom window. If you lived in a Venetian palace, you would step directly from your front door into a boat on one of the many canals which form the streets of Venice.
If you lived in a trailer on wheels, you and your family could travel to many places – and still be at home! In Mongolia, some families live in yurts, which can also be moved easily from place to place.
There are many types of homes throughout the world, and some are quite unique. In Ndebele, South Africa, the exteriors of some homes, hundreds of years old, feature brightly-coloured patterns and pictures that tell the story of the families living inside.
Increasingly, new homes are designed to save on energy usage. One type of floating house, which rotates mechanically and can face the sun for warmth, or turn away to keep cool, has just been built in the Netherlands.
Children will be interested to see the many houses and dwellings in which people around the world live, what they are made of, and why they have been made in certain ways. The detailed, intricate bas-relief cut-paper illustrations of artist Giles Laroche make this a distinctive book that can be savoured again and again.
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