The beginnings of settled communities are coeval with the development of agriculture. This occurred during the Neolithic phase of human cultural evolution. Architecture in the sense of permanent structures is, of course, also coeval with the advent of settled communities. The first houses seem to have been based on round huts with conical roofs. These are referred to as representative of the proto-neolithic era, when a semi nomadic existence prevailed with the beginnings of settled communities. Rectangukar building occurs with an increased sedentariness.
We are here interested in this stage which occurs in the Neolithic era in the Near East and in Central Asia. The classic examples of these developments are those of Jerichoin the 8th millennium BC and of Catal Huyuk and Hacilar in the 7th and 6th millennia BC.
The characteristic building method which evolved was of stone of mud-brick load-bearing walls with a flat roof of wooden beams, covered with twigs or canes, and rendered waterproof.
The technologies of farming and building presumably took place together, as a single technology, as the groups of people were converted to an agricultural economy.
Property photography by Conrad White. Archive photography courtesy of Blakstad.