Earth Architecture

An earth structure is a building or other structure made largely from soil. Includes adobe or mud-brick buildings.

Connected Sites

Site Rationale Link
Ahwar of Southern Iraq Sumerian sites
Al Ain mud brick constructions
Al-Ahsa Oasis Al-Qubbah Mosque and other buildings
Arslantepe Mound The Arslantepe mud-brick architecture, due to its antiquity, advanced technology, and state of preservation, is also an outstanding example of a traditional building system representative of a millenarian culture shared by all Near Eastern communities. (...) It has been widely exposed and preserved in perfect and integral state, with the original mud-brick walls, mud plaster and floors, internal features and paintings (...). (Executive summary, p. 4)
Asante Traditional Buildings
Baekje Historic Areas “Gongsanseong Fortress consists of both earthen wall sections and stone wall sections, although most parts are stone walls. The total length of the fortress amounts for 2,660m (stone walls: 1,925m; earthen walls: 735m).” - Nomination File
Bahla Fort Its ruined walls and towers
Brú na Bóinne Newgrange : henge
Chan Chan
Cliff of Bandiagara
Coro and its Port Coro's traditional buildings are built of earth - adobe, or earth reinforced in a technique known as "bahareque".
Fujian Tulou
Gyeongju Wolseong Fortress "The fortress was built in 101 AD. The east, west, and north walls were built on stone/earth foundation covered with clay. -Kyongju by Kim, Yong-nam (published by Woojin Press, Seoul, Korea) 2008
Hahoe and Yangdong Most of lower class houses in Yangdong are mud wall house
Hopewell "these earthworks consist of embankment walls enclosing huge spaces, with carefully positioned and often monumental gateways" (AB ev)
Jomon Prehistoric Sites "artificial earthen mounds" (Official description) – "The 17 component parts of the nominated serial property include settlements, burial areas, and ritual and ceremonial sites that include stone circles and earthworks." (AB Ev) – For example, Component Part 013 (Kiusu Earthwork Burial Circles) (Nomination file, p. 85)
Ksar of Aït Ben Haddou
Mesa Verde
Orkhon Valley Karakorum, Mud walls
Paquimé provide exceptional evidence of the development of adobe architecture in North America, and in particular of the blending of this with the more advanced techniques of Mesoamerica (OUV)
Poverty Point "The site consists of an integrated complex of earthen monuments" (OUV)
Quebrada de Humahuaca
Royal Palaces of Abomey
Santiniketan "The Uttarayan area was established to the north of the Ashrama from 1919 with the construction of two mud brick buildings (one of which, Konark, still stands), followed by five additional houses for Rabindranath Tagore. These show various experiments with the thermal performance of mud buildings" (AB ev)
Silk Roads Chang'an-Tianshan Corridor Jiahoe, Gaochang
Sudanese style mosques
Taos Pueblo
Tomb of Askia
Turaif Quarter "It bears witness to a building method that is well adapted to its environment, to the use of adobe in major palatial complexes, .." (OUV crit iv)
Yazd Yazd is also one of the largest cities built almost entirely out of adobe. (wiki)
Çatalhöyük mud brick houses (AB ev)


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