Syrian Beehive Dome Building and Plans and basic Instruction how to build an Adobe House

How to build an adobe house – basic instruction.

please scroll down for German abstract/translation

The first step to build any adobe house is the production of the bricks.

It is basically a mixture of stray and mud(earth)  casted into a simple form and  dried in the sun.

In hot weather regions it needs only three or four days to dry . In Hungary it needs a week or two depending on the temperature and sunshine. It can be produces only in the summer!  Several tutorial videos exist on the internet. Still you have to try yourself,  try the local earth, straw and weather.  If you mix also a bit of cement into the earth it dries faster and harder but later while you r work, it is much more difficult to cut the bricks, if you need smaller pieces for the top of the dome or for edges. in the house. Fully organic bricks made of straw and earth can be cut easily with a handsaw and formed as needed.  It is a universal element for architecture and art.

Arabic  video made last summer:



The dome’s is placed on a stone socket, the walls are  very  big on the bottom, and thin on the top. This provides the statics.

The stone  part can consist of one layer only or of several layers, the stone basis is not necessary, if the dome is build on  concrete or pavement.




This basis can carry as well a house, wich has the form of a cube and a house, wich is  a dome.

The doors and windows can be made also of wood, metal or any other material, which is available, not just stone.  If you do not have any wood or metal for the doors, I recommend  to use textile.

Usually the door is not very big, not more then  150 cm high.  If the house is 250  or 270 cm high, the door can be between 120 and 150 cm high.  If bigger, the door is to dominant.

The window is places very low, only. 40 or 50  cm from the  floor.  the size of the window is about 45 cmx 45 cm .  This is better to get cool air into the house from lower levels.



The Beehive is not like an arch, but like a wall with special statics and  character.

See drawing left side.

This drawing shows how to calculate the basic  proportions



Der Dome ist zumeist auf einen steinernere Sockel gebaut, der 15 cm bis zu ein meter hoch sein sein. Die Höhe ist variabel.

Auf dem Steinsockel steht der Erbau.

Es ist unten ganz dick, mindestens  50 cm dick und oben ganz  dünn.

Somit sind die Seitenstützpfeiler, die z.B. bei einem gotischen Dom am Gebäude  an der Seite des Hauptschiffen als Rippen erscheinen, hier  in  die sich nach oben verjüngend Mauerbreiten mit einkalkuliert. Die unten dicken Mauern fangen den schrägen vertikalen Druck der Kuppel auf.

Da der Sockel quadratisch ist, und die Kuppel rund, entsteht eine kleine Konkave in den vier Ecken.

Die Zeichnungen und Photos  zeigen den Innenraum der Kuppel , der rote kreis den Übergang vom Quadrat zur Kuppel, Kugelform.


the red circle show the very ancient problem  of builders to change from  a cube to a sphere:-)

and this photo shows how beautiful it is inside.

But to achieve this natural architectural  beauty it is better to ask a Syrian craftsmen or woman.





upper photo: House: Breeze 9  , Antwerpen ,build by Róza El-Hassan, Hussine Ahmed Hamed, Dr. Nawaf El-Hassan,  in May  2015 organization, curatorial work: Anders Kreuger and the MUHKA team.  The adobe bricks were produced in Hungary at Tisza riverside.

to be continued….




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