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EDIZIONI

Photographs Luca Lupi Text Saverio Mecca

ETS

Living in the arid margins >Earthen Dome Villages of Northern Syria


European Commission

Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA)

Coupoles et habitats. Une tradition constructive entre Orient et Occident Contract n. 2007-1134/001-001 CTU COHANT 1st November 2007 – 31st October 2009 Project Leader University of Florence, Italy

Partnership Directorate General of Antiquities and Museums, Syria

Hellenic Society, Greece

This book is the fruit of the Coupoles et Habitats project, with the support of the Culture 2000 program of the European Union. This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This publication reflects the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein. Editor: Saverio Mecca Photographs: Luca Lupi Text: Saverio Mecca English Review: Ben Birdsall Graphic Design: Susanna Cerri Map: Letizia Dipasquale

University of Liège, Belgium

Polytechnic University of Valencia, Spain

www.edizioniets.com

Ecole d’Avignon, France

© Copyright 2010

CNR – ICVBC, Italy

EDIZIONI ETS Piazza Carrara 16-19, I-56126 Pisa info@edizioniets.com www.edizioniets.com

Culure Lab, Belgium

Culture Programme 2000

Distribuzione PDE ISBN 978-884672692-6


Living in the arid margins >Earthen Dome Villages of Northern Syria Editor Saverio Mecca Photographs Luca Lupi Text Saverio Mecca


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>Earthen Dome Villages of Northern Syria: the culture of uncertainty

Tayara

When Neolithic man first began to comprehend how to interact with and use nature, developing a process of domestication of spaces and habitats, the forming of human culture began. Hunter-gatherers embarked upon a process of appropriating natural spaces, progressing from the linear and temporary to the central and permanent, defining the fundamental necessities of a site for permanent settlement that are relevant to this day, and which in the arid or semi-arid regions are met with difficulty, above all the necessity of water. In the Fertile Crescent, the Neolithic period saw the development of agriculture and stockbreeding. The region of Aleppo, from the Euphrates to Salamiya, has been inhabited since Neolithic times by settlements of sedentary and nomadic peoples. The arid lands of Syria and of the Aleppo region were quickly inhabited and became an area of contact, exchange and conflict between the nomads and settled populations that represented two distinct ways of life and two antagonistic ways of using the land. Two different cultures, that of sedentary farmers and that of nomadic stockbreeders, alternatively dominated this region, each coming to terms with the demands of the environment in their own particular ways. Over the centuries, not only sedentary peoples have substituted nomadic tribes, but also the populations have fluctuated between the two lifestyles, often integrated into and present in the same communities or, even, the same families. The arid climate has dominated the character of the region for millennia, a determining factor for settlement, architecture, building culture, and use of land. The different populations inhabiting these regions down the millennia have had to restrict their living and develop strategies to deal with climatic uncertainties, and chiefly with the supply and availability of clean drinking water. The earthen dome habitats of northern Syria express this exceptional fluctuating culture of uncertainty. The ‘Coupoles et habitats. Une tradition constructive entre Orient et Occident’ project, funded by the European Union Culture 2000 programme, is proposing an original and complete analysis and documentation of this exceptional architectural heritage. The photographs of Luca Lupi, official photographer of the project, are an ideal introduction to the world of earthen dome villages in Northern Syria.

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Saverio Mecca University of Florence, Italy


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� Rasm al Boughere �

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� Tayara �

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� Rasm al Boughere �

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� Rasm al Boughere �

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Joub Maadi � �

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Joub Maadi � �

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� Joub Maadi �

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Oum Aamoud Kebir � Joub Maadi �

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� Oum Aamoud Seghir �

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� Oum Aamoud Seghir �

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Oum Aamoud Kebir � Oum Aamoud Seghir �

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� Oum Aamoud Kebir �

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� Er Raheb �

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IMG0017 Oum Aamoud Kebir

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� Er Raheb �

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� Er Raheb Fejdane �

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� Rbaiaa �

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Rbaiaa � Cheich Hilal �

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photographed villages


Finito di stampare nel mese di maggio 2010 in Pisa dalle Edizioni ETS Piazza Carrara, 16-19, I-56126 Pisa info@edizioniets.com www.edizioniets.com


Living in the arid margins > Earthen Dome Villages of Northern Syria

Il clima arido ha dominato il carattere della Siria settentrionale per millenni, un fattore determinante per gli insediamenti, l’architettura, la cultura della costruzione e l’uso del suolo. Le diverse popolazioni che abitano queste regioni da millenni hanno dovuto adattare la loro vita e sviluppare strategie per affrontare le incertezze climatiche, e soprattutto la disponibilità di acqua potabile. I villaggi a cupole esprimono questa eccezionale, fluttuante cultura dell’incertezza. Il progetto Coupoles et habitats. Une tradition constructive entre Orient et Occident, finanziato dalla Unione Europea all’interno del Programma Cultura 2000, propone un’analisi originale e completa e una documentazione di questo paesaggio culturale e architettonico unico. Le fotografie di Luca Lupi, fotografo ufficiale del progetto, sono un’introduzione ideale al mondo dei villaggi a cupole in terra del nord della Siria. The arid climate has dominated the character of northern Syria for millennia, a determining factor for settlement, architecture, building culture, use of land. The different populations inhabiting these regions down the millennia have had to restrict their living and develop strategies to deal with climatic uncertainties, and chiefly with the supply and availability of clean drinking water. The earthen dome habitats express this exceptional fluctuating culture of uncertainty. The Coupoles et habitats. Une tradition constructive entre Orient et Occident project, funded by the European Union Culture 2000 programme, is proposing an original and complete analysis and documentation of this unique architectural heritage. The photographs of Luca Lupi, official photographer of the project, are an ideal introduction to the world of earthen dome villages in Northern Syria.

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Living in the arid margins  

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