Definitions for earth houses

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The Nuttall Encyclopedia

  1. Earth Houses

    known also as Yird Houses, Weems and Picts' Houses, underground dwellings in use in Scotland, extant even after the Roman evacuation of Britain. Entrance was effected by a passage not much wider than a fox burrow, which sloped downwards 10 or 12 ft. to the floor of the house; the inside was oval in shape, and was walled with overlapping rough stone slabs; the roof frequently reached to within a foot of the earth's surface; they probably served as store-houses, winter-quarters, and as places of refuge in times of war. Similar dwellings are found in Ireland.

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