The homes in the Emirates were characterized by the simple life, innate intelligence, and total dependence on nature and its innumerable sources, which made them take advantage of every gift that gave nature to them. The sea, palms, and sands of the desert are a summary of the elements of Dubai’s life in the past until the progress and prosperity that we are witnessing in the past homes in the UAE today and the proliferation of skyscrapers and high-rise towers
TYPES OF HOUSES IN THE EMIRATES
TENTS “HAIR HOUSES”
The earliest forms of houses in the past, woven from the hair of goats and sheep wool, mixed, spun and twisted tightly and then folded in a spherical shape and installed using ropes and pegs to be the form of tents recognized, was built in the past in the desert and this type of house in the Emirates is characterized by easy transportation from one place to another.
Old houses in the Emirates were built from palm fronds, and houses usually took the shape of a square or rectangle and had very small doors and windows. In the winter, it was covered with cotton and nylon “drum” to prevent leakage and rain in the house.
This type of house is very popular in the past among members of Emirati society, its forms and areas varied, but all consist of similar basics in materials and general form. As for the construction process, it lies in digging a small trench according to the required area, and then the pile is stacked linearly, then the trench is filled with small stones and clay mixed with water.
And then the jurid stacks again, but accidentally this type of house in the old Emirates, at equal distances and relatively spaced and linked by ropes to tighten the construction, and its corners are fixed by the half-palm trunks. And the roof is covered with plinth, which is a compact and tight-lined newspaper with ropes formed from it one piece and coherent, and then once it is also fixed to the pillars of the arish and palm leaves are placed intertwined so as to block the sunlight inside.
One of the most important forms of houses in the Emirates, those built from a mixture of water and soil, or from clay, straw, and light bricks. The idea of
Stone houses were limited to the residence of rulers and impregnable forts, then once the maritime trade and friction process with other countries contributed to the promotion and spread of construction of these houses, which included iron and glass.
The most prominent forms of houses in the Emirates in the past. An architectural landmark was distinguished in the old houses in the Emirates.
Al-Barjeel, a word that means a lane of wind or an air catcher, is a tall rectangular tower above the roof of the building, with fused sides and edges, consisting of four columns. The process lies in that the air blows to the surface and passes through the port from the inside, and the hot air rises to the top, and with the increase of wind moves the air increases and thus the cooling process is better, i.e. an architectural fan or a local air conditioner dominated by the residents of the Emirates the harsh climate and high temperatures in a season the summer.
Then, once the air penetrates through the vertical channels into the rooms, which helps in reducing the temperatures, low humidity, and cooling the room or room.
Most of the brajel of the Emirates was established extensively in the year 1930 AD. Also, these barges are built at a certain height from the roof of the building, where the wind speed at this height is two and a half times greater than the surface of the earth. We can also learn about the architectural form of Al Barajeel, many of which are still present to this day, especially in the Al Fahidi neighborhood in Dubai and the Galaxy market in the Emirate of Sharjah.
CORAL RAG HOUSES
These types of houses were mainly seen in the coastal areas of the Emirates. These areas, called the Trucial coast were dwelled by richer people who could afford coral leaves, were into the business of pearls at that time. Coral rag houses were constructed using limestone and coral material. Then this material was cut into blocks and was allowed to get harder. Coral was more or less used as a mortar for the limestone mixture made from silica (sand) and seashells from the shore. The mixture was called juss. Juss was baked under heat, then powdered and made into a semi solid paste, before using for construction.
The coral rags were not blindly selected for construction. In fact, they had some specialties to be used for making houses. The internal pores in the coral blocks absorbed the heat radiations from the sun during the day time and stored it. Meanwhile, the nights in Arabia are most of the times unendurably cooler; that this stored heat from the coral rags could maintain the temperature to optimum at night. According to the modern civil engineers, the coral walls were a sort of ‘breathing’ walls, as they expanded due to heat during day time and contracted during the night.
Imported mangrove wood especially from the parts of African continent were used for the support of the walls of these coral houses.
ISLAMIC DESIGNS AND COLUMNS, DOORS AND WINDOWS ENGINEERING
The most important thing that distinguishes homes in the past is privacy and provides excellent safety and ventilation factors. Most designs for columns, doors, windows, and barges have taken on Islamic designs and their distinctive architectural designs.
Proceeding from the importance of preserving the heritage and history of the Emirates, the Emirates Post issued a set of stamps documenting the most prevalent types of old homes in the Emirates in the country. This group included four stamps of multiple monetary categories, namely:
• The first stamp bears the image of the Al-Arish house, which consists of palm branches, cedarwood, and ropes.
The second stamp bears the image of a clay house made of clay and straw, which is covered in mud and gondolas.
• The third stamp bears the image of a stone pebble house, which is built in a rectangular shape and consists of stones, gravel, and cement.
• The fourth stamp bears the image of the “tent” poetry house, which is built from goat hair, sheep wool, ropes, and wooden beams, to be built in the countryside.