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A.t.M. Masood Reza, Associate Professor, Architecture Discipline, Khulna University, Khulna.

Courtyard:
special places that are outside yet almost inside, open to sky,
usually in contact with the earth, but surrounded by rooms.1
Courtyards have been most popular in residential architecture all
over the world and in all climatic regions.
Air, light, privacy, security, and tranquilityare properties nearly
universally desired behind the courtyard
Regardless of geographic barriers,
religious-cultural traditions and political
differences, the courtyard form has
emerged in all the civilizations of the
world.
Geographically, spread mainly in North
Africa, Mesoamerica, the Middle East,
and periphery regions (Mediterranean:
Spain, Greece etc.), India, Bangladesh,
China, Pakistan, Iran as the predominant
form in indigenous architecture with hotPueblo Bonito, Chaco Canyon, NM
dry, moderate and/or warm humid
climates.
The earliest form of courtyard architecture has either evolved from the
encampments of the nomadic tribes or the fenced compound dwellings of the
2
first agrarian
communities.
1.Reynolds,
John. Courtyards:
Aesthetic, Social and Thermal Delight.2002. New York: John Wiley
2. Sullivan, Chip. 2002. Garden and Climate. New York: McGraw-Hill.

HISTORIC EVOLUTION OF COURTYARD FORM


The dwellings of the four ancient urban civilizations of Mesopotamia,
the Indus Valley, Egypt and China, along with the dwellings of the
Classical Greek and Roman periods, all bear evidence to the fact that
the courtyard form is rather timeless in the history of architecture.
Kahun, in Egypt: that are believed to be 5000
years old,
Ur, 2000 BC
two-story
houses
constructed
around an
open square
were built of
fired brick.
Kitchen,
working, and
public spaces
were located
on the ground
floor, with

DOUARS in North Africa,


The encampments of
nomadic tribes in West
Africa,
the Kraals of
Bechuanaland in South
Africa
the
Noualas, the
rectangular compound
dwellings of Morocco
transition between the
primitive douars and the
later conventional courthouses.

African cave living

DOUARS

Kraals of Bechuanaland

Noualas

Lela house in Poa village

Compound at Tangassoko

Houses of Upper Volta

Egyptian Courtyard house

Elite Peoples house

Farm House

Indus Valley courtyard house

Chinese courtyard house:


several individual houses around a square.
siheyuan
Each house belongs to a different family
member, and additional houses are created
behind this arrangement to accommodate
additional family members as needed.
The Chinese courtyard is a place of privacy and
tranquility, almost always incorporating a garden
and water feature.
Strangers would be received in the outermost
concept
of yin
yangones
is reflected
courtyard, with
theand
innermost
being
reserved
for close
friends
and family orientation
members.
in planning.
the
north-south

following a strictly axial kind,


symmetrically disposed in all-embracing
harmony

Subterranean house (with court)

Japanese dwelling

The Shintoist and Buddhist


reverence for Mother Nature
has been judiciously
expressed in
the Japanese dwelling design

Great importance to the


landscape architecture of their
court houses.

Courtyard houses in Malay Peninsula


Some Similar to the Chinese
Private interior open space between
core house & kitchen.
Indonesia

Malaysia

Courtyard houses in Bali


Balinese house (kuren)
a family or a number of
related families living within
one enclosure, praying at a
common family temple, with
one gate and one kitchen.
The square plot (pekarangan)
Entirely surrounded by a wall
of whitewashed mud,
protected from rain erosion by
a crude roofing of thatch.

Hindus manuscript called Lontar Asta


Kosala Kosali is the chief guide to build a
proper Balinese house

1. Family Temple: called Sanggah or Merajan,


2. Sleeping
3. West Pavilion: or Bale dauh, is the workhouse
4. Ceremonial Pavilion: The east pavilion, or bale
dangin
5. Sakenam: The guest pavilion for relatives and
children
6. Granary : Or the lumbung or jineng
7. Kitchen Or paon: is in the south
8. Protective Wall: Or aling-aling,

GREEK HOUSE
evolved from the more primitive megaron

Allow low winter sun in the courtyard,


while blocking the high summer sun
angles by the overhanging eaves on
the portico
Peristyle house

At Delos

At Lindos
At Priene

Greek house at Delos

Roman House
Domus
inspired by the light and airiness of
Greek peristyle houses and the
atrium houses of the Etruscans.
Roman house with two interior courts,
the peristylum and atrium
Usually one-storey high, and that all rooms
were lit by relatively small openings facing
the interior
Light from the
entrance and
from the center
atrium.
Roman atrium
often contained a
central pool used
to collect
rainwater, called
an impluvium.

peristylum

1 Atrium
3 Vestibulum
5 Impluvium
7 Triclinium
9 Exhedra/Oecus
11 Cubiculum
13 Posticum
15 Cucina (kitchen

Vestibulum

2 Peristylium
4 Fauces
6 Ala
8 Tablinum
10 Taberna
12 Andron
14 Bathroom

Fauces |

Atrium |

Ala |

Tablinum | Peristylium

Roman insula, or apartment house.

City Residences The


apartment-house
called as insulae

Renassaince palazzo

Courtyard houses in the Middle East


reflect the nomadic influences.
Instead of designating rooms for
cooking, sleeping, etc., these
activities were relocated throughout
the year as appropriate to
accommodate the changes in
temperature and the location of the
Often the flat
sun.
rooftops of these
structures were
used for sleeping in
warm weather. In
some Islamic
cultures, private
courtyards provide
the only outdoor
space for women to
relax unobserved.

Dar:a house with a courtyard,


Two salons (beit, pl. biyout)
The salons around the courtyard (wust-i-dar) are
narrow and with very high ceilings
a fountain (saqaiya) made of zellij (zellige)
a bartal (room without doors, open to the courtyard, for
entertaining guests) opposite the fountain,
Sometimes there is a marble fountain (khassa), instead
of a saqaiya, in the center of the courtyard.

adding a cellar below the level of the


courtyard called the serdab.
Other kinds of Houses:
Dwira: a small house with
only one and a small
courtyard .
Riad:a house with a garden
in the center, usually with
orange and lemon
Massreiya:a guest house, On
the ground floor there would
usually be a stable or shop
Kasr:a palace or very large
house.

Sahn
The sahn is used as a private garden for the
family, a service yard during the day and in the
summer it would be used as a family room.
Usually the entrance of the house does not lead
to the sahn directly,
lead to the sahn through corridor called a majaz
allowed the residents to open the main door and
allow guests into the reception room, called the
majlis.
usually surrounded by
a colonnade, and has
a howz, or pool of
water, in the middle.
The iwan, which is a
family room with only
three walls, usually
overlooks the sahn,

Sitting area in the mashrabiyya


at Al-Suheine House

Iranian courtyard showing both


interior and exterior shenashil

Courtyard house in Sisaya,


Murcia, Spain

Dar Sfar in Tunis

Courtyard houses in Baghdad


showing (a) the orientation on
Mecca and (b) the zoning into
public and private areas

courtyard houses in Meknes,


Morocco

MIDDLE AGES (EUROPIAN)

only traces of courtyard houses were


found
in Italian cortile houses and monastic
cloisters.
The medieval
European
farmhouse was a
courtyard house
four buildings
arranged around
a square
courtyard
An elevated
walkway
frequently ran
around two or
three

Slovakian Farm house

RENAISSANCE
Quadrangle
A space or courtyard, usually
rectangular (square or oblong) in plan,
the sides of which are entirely or mainly
occupied by parts of a large building.

Brunelleschi, Manetti and


Michelangelo designed bold and
charming courtyards

Patio houses
Spanish
2 dwelling types in
Spain inspired by the
Roman atrium houses.
In Northern Spain the
houses were more
solid. And the climate
in Southern areas
favored outdoor
activity

Entered through a monumental


Mexican doorway, leading into a
passageway known
as the zaguan & from the zaguan
one enters the patio.

LATE 19TH CENTURY


Courtyard Housing in Los Angeles by Spanish Spanish Colonial Revival

Marcel Breuer first conceived the idea


of
separating living and sleeping areas
by use of courtyards.
MODERN
detached court house overlooking a garden on
the south was built by Hugo Haring in 19281.
(Frentzel house, 1928)
Fattoria Gutgarkau, di Hugo Haring,
Lubecca 1924

This style was later adopted into an L-shaped plan by two Bauhaus
architects, Hannes Meyer and Ludwig Hilberseimer. This L-shaped
modification of the quadrangular court-house became popular in both
Germany and England by the 1950s and 1960s.

Though the basic courtyard form of dwelling is rectangular or cubic in shape, it


may be round or curvilinear too. A block with a punctured hole in the middle as
a breathing space within the confined box is the general courtyard type.
However, this form may be and has been modified to adapt to the topography,
site restrictions, building orientation and functions to create new formal shapes
such as the L, U, H, T, V or Y.
1.Macintosh, Duncan. 1973. The Modern Courtyard House. Architectural Association, London.

INDIA AND INDIAN COURTYARD HOUSES


called by various regional names:
Aryan village community consisted
Haveli of Gujrat of northern India,
of several families each with its own
Wada of Maharashtra,
house (griha), cowshed and granary
Deori of Hyderabad,
in its own compound on a courtyard
Rajbari of Bengal and
The first phase is associated with the
Nalukettu in Kerala.1
Mughal period between the 16th and
early 18th centuries and the second
phase,
which is marked by the colonization
of the subcontinent between the late
18th to 20th
Centuries.2
Generally, four oblong one-storey huts enclosing a square court is
a common way of rural massing of housing
differences in the urban and rural
courtyard form
1.Noble, Allen G. Patterns and Relationships of Indian Houses. Asias Old Dwellings: Tradition, Resilience, and
Change. Knapp, Ronald G. 2003. Oxford University Press.

2.Randhwa, T.S. The Indian Courtyard House. 1999. Prakash Books Pvt. Limited.

HAVELI
Northern and north-western India
(Gujarat, Rajasthan or Punjab)
Gujarat
Rich interior and exterior wood
carvings and decorations.
Elongated but narrow in plan
Divided into three subparts
First there is the roofed but open verandah
in the front of the house facing the street.
Next there is a room, called baithak

Typical interiors of a Gujrat Haveli showing richly


carved wooden ceiling

Then Inner house; courtyard has a series


of rooms devoted to cooking, food
preparation and water storage

unique characteristic inclusion of the swingseat or hinchko


Rainwater is also stored underneath the courtyard
windows are typically intricately designed bay
windows or cradle windows with rich latticework

Havelis in Rajasthan
extensive use of locally available
stone (sandstone, limestone, marble,
etc)
Enforced seclusion of women, solid
stonewalls, and at the same time the
need for admittance of sunlight,
combined to favor the adoption of
multiple alcoves (jharokha),
balconies,
porches, and oriel windows
noise
of the
street
blocked by high walls
projecting
from
theisfaade.

Day light
penetration
into the space
increases
creating an
illusion of
spaciousness.

Reflect the psychology of the


society that built them which
relied primarily on security and
robustness to safeguard the
families
The solid haveli gates, studded with
nails, were bolted at dusk and were
not opened till the morning

Typically the western section is


more open to the exterior &
predominantly a mens area or
mardana,
the eastern section which is
carefully
set away from the entrance is the
womens area or zenana.

Havelis is Punjab

WADA
A form of residential architecture by the
Marathas under the patronage of Peshwas,

Brahmin Maratha aristocracy


inclusion of courtyards with fountains,
pools, terraces, pillared aisles, arches,
latticed windows or balconies
Symmetry - important aspect.
Generally the wada rose to three
or more floors.

most houses have one court in front


to receive visitors or accommodate
business and administrative activities
a series of family-oriented inner
courts
External ornamentation minimal and
restricted to carved Hindu deities
(Ganesh or Lakshmi)
Interiors are lavishly decorated with
paintings and other embellishments
a room dedicated for religious
ceremonies or the corner have the
image of the family deity.
most wadas have a sitting platform or
otla

NALUKETTU / tarawad
residence form of Kerala
means a single courtyard with four
sides.
compact structure
sloping tiled roofs on all sides,
protecting an interior and exterior
verandah
Characteristically
next to a bathing the
tankreligious
or kullam.
residents include deities near the
courtyard and in a
small temple, typically a serpent
shrine or sarpu kavu, at the rear end
strong
of
the house.
Vastushastram principles of
orientation, location and functions of
rooms.
decorated main entrance (see figure
2.8) on the east with a semi-private
raised verandah with built-in
platforms for visitors to sit on.
did not have a segregated womens area

CHETTINAD
Typical residence of Nattukottai
Chettiars, mainly a banking and
commerce based community
elongated and rectangular in shape
The transparency allows
uninterrupted views from front to the
back door.
The front door is accessed by steps
leading through a two tiered
verandah which is used for receiving
guests
Covered verandah surrounds the
main courtyard.

Behind the main structure there is a


smaller court or kattu associated
with the kitchen and cooking
activities, therefore generally a
womens domain.
Small rooms surrounding the main
courtyard are used by the heads of
the sub-families
Most of the upper storey is used for
storage rooms except one room
which is reserved for newly-weds
The verandah closer to the rear end of
the house is used for formal meals. This
is also in two levels, the higher level
being used by men and the lower one by
women.

RAJBARI
wealthy Begali babus/
Zamindars who were influenced
by the Western architectural
styles and tastes of the British
built these mansions with a
Western touch of classy
furniture
and sculpture but retained the
traditional inward courtyard
pujamandap
thakurdalan
form and pujaorroom.
(room for worship) on one side
of the courtyard

Rustic Hut, Bangladesh

COURTYARD BENEFITS AND LIABILITIES


PSYCHO-SOCIAL BENEFITS
CULTURAL BENEFITS
CLIMATIC BENEFITS
ACCESSIBILITY AND CIRCULATION BENEFITS
SYMBOLICAL RELIGIOUS BENEFITS
ECONOMICAL BENEFITS

LIABILITIES

Thank You