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THE TRADITIONAL JAVANESE HOUSE

 
 

The traditional Javanese house (in Javanese Jawa adah) is the vernacular habitat of Javanese on the island of Java in Indonesia. The architecture of the Javanese house is characterized by its rules of hierarchy that are reflected in particular in the shape of the roof and the organization of its layout. Traditional Javanese houses generally have similar layouts, it is the shape of the roof that defines the social and economic standing of the owners. The architecture of the Javanese traditional houses has been largely influenced by the Dutch colonial architecture and has contributed modern architecture of the twentieth century in Indonesia.
Javanese are a population whose language belongs to the Austronesian family. Bas-reliefs in Borobudur suggest that Austronesian houses were the norm from the 9th century to the 12th century2. It is between the thirteenth century and the fourteenth century that emerges the traditional Javanese house as we know it today.
The arrival of Europeans in the sixteenth century marks the emergence of the use of new construction techniques: brick floors, foundations for walls and tiled roofs.
In the twentieth century, the Dutch studied Javanese architecture and were inspired to create an “indies” style
The traditional Javanese houses reflect the social belonging of the occupant according to the shape of the roof, from the smallest to the largest: kampung, limasan and joglo.
The traditional house of the Javanese aristocracy is a set composed of several buildings whose entrance is done by lawang pintu. The house is generally oriented along a north-south axis.
The pendopo is a large, open, rectangular pavilion reserved for noble dwellings. It is located in front of the complex and serves to receive guests and for ceremonies. It is connected to the main dwelling (omah) by the peringgitan.
The omah is arranged using removable panels (which can be wooden). At the front, the emperan is a semi-veranda used for public activities4. An ornate door leads to the dalem, the central room. This being the most interior, it is rather dark, cut off from the outside light. This is where the family sleeps. In the back, we find the senthong composed of three small pieces. The room to the east is used to store agricultural equipment. That of the west is used to store rice. The centerpiece is the one where incense is burned for ceremonies in tribute to Sri, the goddess of rice.
As the family grows, structures can be added (gandok).

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