Ancients Fired Up over Tile

By Respess, Susan P. | The Florida Times Union, January 30, 1999 | Go to article overview

Ancients Fired Up over Tile


Respess, Susan P., The Florida Times Union


As a building product and as an element of design, tile has been around for centuries.

According to historians, the Egyptians and Mesopotamians invented tiles about 4000 B.C., using the thin, decorated clay pieces on the exterior of their houses and as interior wall and floor coverings.

Archaeologists found blue-glazed tiles in an Egyptian pyramid. Molded tiles in bas-relief and colorful tiles laid in designs on temple towers and palaces were found in Mesopotamia.

In 580 B.C., according to The Style Sourcebook by Judith Miller (Stewart, Tabori & Chang, 1998, $60) and the Encyclopedia Americana, Babylonians used tile work on the city walls as a warning. The mythical creatures and warriors in tile pictures were intended to frighten invaders.

Persia's palace of Darius in the sixth century had a frieze of archers in tile. In Rome's villas, colorful tiles made mythological scenes on the walls while unglazed tiles were laid for floors.

By the 15th century in Persia, fine homes, mosques and public buildings glittered inside and out with brilliantly glazed wall tiles in geometric, figural and floral designs. Some of the tiles were iridescent and changed colors with the light.

During the Middle Ages, from the fifth to 15th centuries in Western Europe, when the Christian church was the single most unifying institution, tiles were designed to focus people's thoughts on God, Miller said.

The tiles were hand-decorated with Christian symbols -- the fish, the circle representing eternity and the fleur-de-lis representing the holy trinity.

By the 13th century, some inlaid floor tiles told a story with images of dogs, stags and hunters.

Tiles, both molded and stamped, also adorned tombs in China during the 10th to 13th centuries. On the imperial palace, ridge tiles on the roof formed the shape of dragons.

In Spain, tile design emerged with a strong Islamic influence of arabesques, overlapping circles and checks. The walls in fine Spanish houses were wainscoted in tile, often blue and white.

During the Renaissance (1350 to 1650), Spain and Italy produced tiles with figures of knights and saints, painted in dark blue and yellow.

Meanwhile, tile artists in the Dutch city of Delft were developing a unique style that remains popular to the present day. By the mid-17th century, the Delft tiles had a white-glazed background with blue designs or delicate scenes painted in blue.

Also during the 17th century, single tiles and large panels of more than one tile depicted magnificent arrangements of flowers in vases. The style was popular in Portugal, the Netherlands, England and France.

Tiles then also featured painted landscape scenes with people, and scenes of sports, children's games, pastimes and occupations. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Ancients Fired Up over Tile
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.