Traditional Greek Windows of Wood

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Modern Greek shutters are more decorative than are traditional ones.
Modern Greek shutters are more decorative than are traditional ones.

A window allows a view of the world outside your home and provides an opening for fresh air and sunlight to stream inside. Ancient Greek homes had windows in their homes, also, but without glass. Small window openings were sealed with primitive wooden shutters that provided protection against rain, heat, cold and insects. The shutters were opened wide on pleasant, sunny days.

  1. Climate

    • Wooden window shutters help keep a Greek home more comfortable. The diverse climatic conditions found in Greece depend on seasonal changes as well as geographic location. Northern Greece has extremely hot, humid summers that can reach 104 degrees Fahrenheit. Solid wooden shutters can be thrown open to allow cool breezes and fresh-air ventilation to permeate a home. Southern Greece is typically rainy from mid-October until February. Sealing up window openings with wooden shutters blocks out the cold rain, providing warmer insulation.

    Ancient Home Construction

    • An ancient Greek home was typically built from a plentiful resource of sun-dried mud bricks. Homes were constructed to keep the inhabitants warm during cold months and cool on scorching summer days. The roof was made of clay tiles. Small windows, without glass, were covered by primitive wooden shutters. The women and men were separated into sections of the house. The women were assigned to the inner parts of the house without windows to keep them away from prying eyes and visiting male friends.

    Louvered Shutter Origin

    • The concept of covering windows with shutters is believed to have its roots in ancient Greece. Solid window shutters were utilitarian, being used for protection from the elements and enemies, with little thought being given to decoration. Heavy, louvered shutters crafted from marble were first created in ancient Greece, but replaced by the more versatile wooden shutter. Louvered wooden shutters provided insulation and light control, and, when pointed downward, they could repel rainwater.

    Modern Shutters

    • Traditional Greek windows fitted with wooden shutters have endured as a favorite architectural element and are frequently incorporated into modern Greek homes. Wooden shutters are durable and efficient, creating a romantic, old-world ambiance. Decorative wood carvings and a variety of paint colors enhance modern Greek shutters. Plantation shutters, originating in the United States on Southern cotton plantations, evolved from the original Greek shutters. They incorporate wider louvers and are typically painted white.

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