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Dammar  

Rupert Featherstone

Natural resin widely used as a picture varnish and as an additive to oil paint (see Resin, §1). It is obtained from several species of tree growing in South-east Asia. Dammar becomes yellow with age but is less prone to surface disfigurement than mastic, which it gradually superseded during the 19th century....

Article

Lotus  

Eva Wilson

Term for two distinct decorative motifs based on types of water-lily; one originated in Egypt, the other in India. Lotus motifs in Egypt occur from the beginning of the Dynastic period c. 3000 bc in two stylized forms. The curved outline of the flower-head distinguishes the motif based on the white-flowered ...

Article

Ajay Dandekar

Category of commemorative monuments found throughout the Indian subcontinent. Satī stones (satīkals) were erected as memorials to women who committed suicide following their husbands’ deaths, while hero stones (vīragals) commemorate men who died under such circumstances as a battle, a cattle raid or the defence of their villages from bands of raiders. Early medieval Kannada literature recognized five events for which heroes were honoured: a cattle raid; resisting an assault on the modesty of women; extending help to distressed relatives; acting on the orders of their masters; and defending their land....

Article

Susan Roaf

Traditional form of natural ventilation and air-conditioning built on houses throughout the Middle East from North Africa to Pakistan. Constructed at least since the 2nd millennium bc in Egypt, wind catchers have also been used to cool caravanserais, water cisterns and mosques. Consisting of an open vent built on the roof facing into or away from the prevailing wind, wind catchers have shafts carrying the air down through the roof into the living area below, thereby ventilating and cooling the spaces. Wind catchers are generally placed above the summer rooms of courtyard houses. On the ...