NAKHARA (Journal of Environmental Design and Planning)

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The ancient village of Thagara is located circa ten kilometres north of Dawei, Tanintharyi Region of Lower Myanmar. While Thagara's archaeology and the domestic religious architecture such as the pagodas and monasteries have been well documented, this article is the first to classify the main elements of the domestic dwellings. Five key components of the vernacular architecture are identified: the style of the house facade, the building materials, the hearth, the rice barn and the shrine. Constructed with local materials, the facades and roofs were designed to meet the challenges of the monsoonal climate and the hearth and rice barn adapted to the preferences of individual house dwellers and rice yields. The Buddhist and animistic shrines reflect the importance of spiritual activities in the traditional way of life. Using data from a systematic survey, the variations are defined in this article to illustrate aspects of the social, economic and religious daily life in the villages of Lower Myanmar.

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