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machiya@’¬‰Æ
CATEGORY:@architecture / folk dwellings
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1@Also written ’¬‰®. One of the two main categories of vernacular house, *minka –¯‰Æ. From the mediaeval period, through the Edo period and into the Meiji era, the urban houses of craftsmen or artisans, shokunin El, and merchants, shounin ¤l, classes collectively referred to as townspeople, chounin ’¬l. Typically, machiya directly abutted the public street, and combined residential functions with the accommodation of a workshop or manufacturing space, office and retail space. The shop, *mise “X, usually occupied the front part of the house and had sliding or folding shutters of various sorts which opened to the street to display wares. In plan, machiya shared with the other major vernacular category, the farmhouse, nouka ”_‰Æ, a similar internal division into an unfloored service and circulation space, the *doma “yŠÔ, and a kyoshitsubu ‹Žº•” of one or more rooms with raised timber floors, overspread in the more sophisticated houses with straw mats, *tatami ô. As with the farmhouse, a great door *oodo ‘åŒË, giving access to the doma was the usual main entrance to the dwelling. The typical machiya plot was narrow but deep, with storehouses, kura ‘ , and other ancillary structures at the rear of the house. The doma was a vital through-passage to the area behind the house. It was commonly referred to as a *tooriniwa ’Ê‚è’ë. This arrangement was particulaly associated with the Kansai ŠÖ¼ region and western Japan. Notably in parts of the Kantou, a different arrangement was widespread, with an unfloored area, called maedoma ‘O“yŠÔ across the front of the building. Most machiya were *hirairi •½“ü houses with their eaves overhanging the street, but gable-entry *tsumairi È“ü, houses also occurred in some areas. Plot size varied, with plot width, *maguchi ŠÔŒû, in particular, being an index of wealth: 3-3.5 *ken ŠÔ (approx. 6m), was a standerd maguchi in Kyoto during the Edo period, but a large machiya might have a frontage of more than 10 ken (18-20m). General trends in machiya design include a change from perishable roofing materials like shingles held in place by stones *ishioki itabuki Î’u”•˜, or thatch, to tiles, and from walls with the structural timbers exposed, to thick overall plastering@*ookabe-zukuri ‘å•Ç‘¢. Both developments were partly an attempt to provide protection against fire. Upper floors also develop from dark, low attics to suites of full-height rooms. In the most sophisticated machiya, all of these phenomena were, however, in evidence by the beginning of the Edo period. The earliest surviving machiya (Kuriyama ŒIŽR house, Gojou ŒÜžŠ in Nara) dates from 1607, but the term was already in use in the mid-Heian period, since it is included in the 10c dictionary of Japanese, WAMYOUSHOU ˜`–¼´, where it is written “X‰Æ. This seems to have referred to small houses outside the designated east and west market areas of the capital, but facing the street and incorporating a space that served as a shop. Rows of such small houses are depicted in late-Heian picture scrolls *emaki ŠGŠª, such as Nenjuugyouji Emaki ”N’†sŽ–ŠGŠª, though not all are shown with shops at the front.

2@An area where artisan or merchant houses are numerous.

3@In the ancient and mediaeval periods, buildings in a *machi ’¬ (definition 6 ) were used as lodging or withdrawing areas by the staff of a particular office or department of a large institution or elite household. An example is the Kuroudo‚„okoro Machiya ‘ lŠ’¬‰® in the Inner Palace, Dairi “à— , of Kyoto Gosho ‹ž“sŒäŠ.
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