Prehistoric Architecture flashcards |

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Sympathetic Magic

Paleolithic Era. Idea that you could go into a sacred space and recreate the image of the animal and recreate its spirit. Prehistoric people would also throw rocks and arrowheads at the animal paintings to recreate the hunt.


Layers of domestic debris that forms into hills that can be used to be built into as shelter.



Old Stone Age



Middle Stone Age



Stone Age



Multifamily buildings during the Neolithic Era, usually made out of timber wood. As early as 6000-5000 BCE. 20-30 people could live in them. Hearth was outside, and there is only one door. House divided in 3 sections - work, sleep/eat, and grain.


Bulls head made from plaster, horns, and skulls.


Stone put in the landscape, vertically by humans.
Ex: Carnac France


Large stone, often used in Neolithic Monuments.

Cap Stone

A stone fixed on top of something, like a wall or tomb.

Dolmen (trilithon)

2 upright posts capped by a single lintel.

Aubrey Hole

A ring of fifty-six Chalk pits at Stonehenge, named after John Aubrey.

Heel Stone

A single large block of sarsen stone standing within the Avenue outside the entrance of the Stonehenge earthwork.

Stone Alignment

Several rows of stones.


Circular pattern of stones.

Post and lintel

A horizontal member, supported on its two ends by columns.

Mortise-&-Tenon Joint

knob and socket system used to join pieces of wood or stone together.

Hall of the Bulls, Caves at Lascaux, France,
c. 15000 - 13000 BCE

Paleolithic cave paintings. Paintings inside of the cave was made from minerals that were cut out of rock and then crushed into a powder and then was mixed with animal fat.

Paleolithic Hut

Were built with landscape materials. They were bind by tree branches with braided grass on top. They would also have stones surrounding the outside of the hut and the hut would have a circular or oval shape.

Skara Brae, Orkney Islands, Scotland, c. 3100 - 2500 BCE

This site used to contain a series of Paleolithic camp sites before the village. Shelters were made of midden and thatch.

Catal Huyuk, Turkey
c. 6500 - 5700 BCE

Neolithic City. Unfortified, dense with dwellings without streets. Entries into buildings were on the roof tops and there was high openings in the walls for ventilation. Dwellings were made of mud-brick walls and a post-&-lintel timber framework.

Passage grave, British Isles

Neolithic Era. Burial grave for people of prestige. Had a passage way to the burial chamber and created a series of dolmens in the passage way. At the end of the passage way there is a domed vault.

grange passage grave, County Meath, Ireland - 3100 BCE

An earthen mound and passage grave. Had decorative boulders that surrounded the perimeter. Aligned with the solstices.

Alignment, Carnac, France, c. 4250 - 3750 BCE

Several rows of stone alignments. 2 miles long and made up of menhirs.

Stonehenge, Salisbury Plain, England
c. 2900 - 1400 BCE

Is a Cromlech. Made in 4 stages, and has a round ditch around it. The ditch was a perfect circle. 100 feet in diameter. Has a post and lintel system. Between the two cromlechs of post and lintels there was a circle of blue stones.


Bundles of dry grass.


Painting painted into the plaster as it was wet.


Row of timber columns that are sharpened on the top and then used to fence in a Neolithic village to protect the residents.


Horizontal beams (tree branches) that were used with twine to form roofs.


Twisted dried grass that is then braided and was used to tie things together.


Two earliest known urban communities

Jericho and Catal Huyuk

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