Fridge Magnet Depiction of Alsace House, France
Alsace is a region in France and is ranked fifth amongst the smallest regions of the country and is also declared as the smallest region in metropolitan France. It is situated on the eastern border of the country and a part of it also lies at the western end of the Rhine River that borders Switzerland and Germany. Alsace is famous for its houses that are built in a particular and unique style that is why this resin fridge magnet above is undoubtedly an apt memento of the region as it is shaped as an Alsace house.
Architecture of Alsace Houses
Houses in Alsace are greatly influenced from German architectural style. Generally, roofs of houses in Alsace tilt at a 60 angle and are constructed from smooth tiles made of clay that are also known as 'tuiles ecaille alsaciennes'; these tiles are specifically found in Alsace and certain adjacent areas of northeastern France. These tiles have a very unique shape and resemble a beaver's tail; they are also commonly used in Savoie, Switzerland, southern Germany and Jura. Alsace houses generally, contain a courtyard that cannot be accessed from the street. Houses are mainly constructed from stone; wood is only used to make the roofs, floors and stairs.
Types of Alsace Houses
There are different types of Alsace house but they can be divided into three major categories.
- 18th Century Alsace Houses: Majority of the houses in Alsace were established in this style. 18th century Alsace houses are normally made of timber and are also known as 'half-timbered' houses. These houses are very easy to deconstruct and can be easily re-established anywhere else. Unlike other Alsace houses, an 18th century house takes only a single day to be demolished and another day to be re-constructed elsewhere.
- Alsace Renaissance Houses: These are those Alsace houses that were built during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. They were constructed using the corbelling method in which dimensions of every floor are more than those of the previous one. These houses have wide roofs and a balcony beneath it; and windows are generally small.
- Alsace Vineyard Houses: These Alsace houses are concentrated in the Vosges area that is close to the Alsatian vineyards, which is why they are named 'vineyard houses.' These houses are built in an extravagant and luxurious style. Their ground floor is normally constructed from stone and the first and second floors are half-timbered. They also consist of huge cellars for storing wine.