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Mon 24 Apr 2017
Thai House in the South
Written by National Culture Commission   
Friday, 09 February 2007 20:50

Thai houses in the south are quite similar to those found in other regions of the country. There are ruan kruang pook (tied house), ruan kruang sab (wooden house) both of which have undergone development which gives the southern people the cement brick house. Their peculiarities are supporting posts resting on stone slabs to prevent termites attack, and dampness from the ground seeping through. The space under the house is rather generous while the roof is set rather low. This design makes the house better withstand strong winds and rains. The slant of the extended roof allows rain water to run off the roof quickly and help the roof to get dry quickly also. The alignment of the supporting posts and the walls are slanted inwards. The style known as "Elephant in a urinating posture" is thought to make the house absorb the impacts of strong winds more effectively, permits easy ventilation and at the same time protect the ground under the house from collecting an excessive amount of rain water. The walls are made of wooden boards arranged in such a way that the upper board overlaps the lower one to prevent rainwater running through the wall on the inside of the house.

Thai house of the southern region has its longer side oriented in the east to west direction known in the dialect as "pluk baan loi wan" meaning setting the along the south to north direction. Doing so would expose the house to full sun light almost half a day and also to strong winds which are liable to blow from east to west directions. The alignment of the granary is the opposite of that of the house. By setting the longer side of the granary along the north south direction, the paddy in the granary will get all sun light it needs to get dry. The granary of cause is more sturdily built than a regular house.

Thai house in the south is built as a single unit for one family's living. When the family grows large, another house is built along the main house together with a platform linking the two houses into a single unit.

The platform area of Thai house in the south is small an narrow compared with the same of Thai houses in other regions. This is probably due to frequent rains in the south and narrow or small platform helps one to move from one house to other in as short a time as possible and hence get least wet. In some areas of the south, brick work or even an earth mound is built to the level of the platform and use for growing flowers or small plants such as promagrenade, orange lime, vegetable or perfume wood plants. The roofs of Thai house in the south come in four major styles i.e. gabled, "panyah" "kabranoh" and manila.

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Information from: "Rice and Thai Ways of Life" published by Office of the National Culture Commission.