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The front door of a house is often decorated to appear inviting.

A door is a moveable barrier used to cover an opening. Doors are widely used and are found in walls or partitions of a building, vehicles, and furniture such as cupboards, cages, and containers. A door can be opened to give access and closed more or less securely using a combination of latches and locks. (See article Door security). Doors are nearly universal in buildings of all kinds, allowing passage between the inside and outside, and between internal rooms. When open, they admit ventilation and light. The door is used to control the physical atmosphere within a space by enclosing it, excluding air drafts, so that interiors may be more effectively heated or cooled. Doors are significant in preventing the spread of fire. They act as a barrier to noise. (See article Door safety).

They are also used to screen areas of a building for aesthetic purposes, keeping formal and utility areas separate. Doors also have an aesthetic role in creating an impression of what lies beyond. Doors are often symbolically endowed with ritual purposes, and the guarding or receiving of the keys to a door, or being granted access to a door can have special significance.[1] Similarly, doors and doorways frequently appear in metaphorical or allegorical situations, literature and the arts, often as a portent of change.

Contents

Applications

Door of Florence's Baptistery called Gates of Paradise

Architectural doors have numerous general and specialized uses. Doors are generally used to separate interior spaces (rooms, closets, etc.) for privacy, convenience, security, and safety reasons. Doors are also used to secure passages into a building from the exterior for reasons of safety and climate control.

Doors also are applied in more specialized cases:

  • A trapdoor is a door that is oriented horizontally in a floor or ceiling, often accessed via a ladder.
  • Blast-proof doors are constructed to allow access to a structure but also to provide protection from the force of explosions.
  • A garden door is any door that opens to a garden or backyard. It is often used specifically for double French doors in place of a sliding glass door. In such a configuration, it has the advantage of a very large opening for moving large objects in and out.
  • A pet door (also known as a doggy door or cat flap) is an opening in a door to allow pets to enter and exit without the main door being opened. It may be simply covered by a rubber flap or it may be an actual door hinged on the top that the pet can push through. Pet doors may be mounted in a sliding glass door as a new (permanent or temporary) panel. Pet doors may be unidirectional, only allowing pets to exit. Pet doors may be electronic, only allowing pets with a special electronic tag to enter.

Design and styles

A decorated door from the Tibetan Namdroling monastery, southern India.

Many kinds of doors have specific names, depending on their purpose. The most common variety of door is the single-leaf door which consists of a single rigid panel that fills the doorway. Many variations on this basic design are possible, such as the double-leaf door or double doors that have two adjacent independent panels hinged on each side of the doorway.

One of the ornate doors inside the Great Mosque of Kairouan also known as the Mosque of Uqba, city of Kairouan, Tunisia

A Dutch door or stable door is divided in half horizontally. Traditionally the top half can be opened to allow a horse or other animal to be fed, while the bottom half remained closed to keep the animal inside.

Saloon doors are a pair of lightweight swing doors often found in public bars, and especially associated with the American west. Saloon doors, also known as cafe doors, often use bidirectional hinges which close the door regardless of which direction it is opened by incorporating springs. Saloon doors that only extend from knee-level to chest-level are known as batwing doors.

A pair of batwing doors appears on the label of Sioux City Sarsaparilla

A blind door is a door with no visible trim or operable components. It is designed to blend with the adjacent wall in all finishes, and visually to be a part of the wall, a disguised door.

A barn door is a door characteristic of a barn. They are often/always found on barns, and because of a barn's immense size (often) doors are subsequently big for utility.

A French door, also called a French window, is a door that has multiple windows ("lights") set into it for the full length of the door. Traditional French doors are assembled from individual small pieces of glass and mullions. These doors are also known as true divided lite[sic French doors. French doors made of double-pane glass (on exterior doors for insulation reasons) may have a decorative grille embedded between the panes, or may also be true divided lite French doors. The decorative grille may also be superimposed on top of single pane of glass in the door.

A louvred door has fixed or movable wooden fins (often called slats or louvers) which permit open ventilation while preserving privacy and preventing the passage of light to the interior. Being relatively weak structures, they are most commonly used for wardrobes and drying rooms, where security is of less importance than good ventilation, although a very similar structure is commonly used to form window shutters.

A flush door is a completely smooth door, having plywood or MDF fixed over a light timber frame, the hollow parts of which are often filled with a cardboard core material. Flush doors are most commonly employed in the interior of a dwelling, although slightly more substantial versions are occasionally used as exterior doors, especially within hotels and other buildings containing many independent dwellings.

A moulded door has the same structure as that of flush door. The only difference is that the surface material is a moulded skin made of HDF / MDF. It is commonly used as interior doors.

A ledge and brace door is a door made from multiple vertical planks fixed together by two horizontal planks (the ledges) and kept square by a diagonal plank (the brace).

A wicket door is a normal sized door built into a much larger one, such as the gate of a city or castle.

A bifold door is a door unit that has several sections, folding in pairs. Wood is the most common material, and doors may also be metal or glass. Bifolds are most commonly made for closets, but may also be used as units between rooms.

A sliding glass door, sometimes called an Arcadia door, is a door made of glass that slides open and sometimes has a screen.

Australian doors are a pair of plywood swinging doors often found in Australian public houses. These doors are generally red or brown in color and bear a resemblance to the more formal doors found in other British Colonies' public houses.

A false door is a wall decoration that looks like a door. In ancient Egyptian architecture, this was a common element in a tomb, the false door representing a gate to the afterlife. They can also be found in the funerary architecture of the desert tribes (e.g., Libyan Ghirza).

Types of mechanism

Hinged doors

Door in rural Punjab

Most doors are hinged along one side to allow the door to pivot away from the doorway in one direction but not in the other. The axis of rotation is usually vertical. In some cases, such as hinged garage doors, the axis may be horizontal, above the door opening.

Doors can be hinged so that the axis of rotation is not in the plane of the door to reduce the space required on the side to which the door opens. This requires a mechanism so that the axis of rotation is on the side other than that in which the door opens. This is sometimes the case in trains, such as for the door to the toilet, which opens inward.

A swing door has special hinges that allow it to open either outwards or inwards, and is usually sprung to keep it closed.

Sliding doors

It is often useful to have doors which slide along tracks, often for space or aesthetic considerations.

A bypass door is a door unit that has two or more sections. The doors can slide in either direction along one axis on parallel overhead tracks, sliding past each other. They are most commonly used in closets, in order to access one side of the closet at a time. The doors in a bypass unit will overlap slightly when viewed from the front, in order not to have a visible gap between them.

Doors which slide between two wall panels are called pocket doors.

Sliding glass doors are common in many houses, particularly as an entrance to the backyard. Such doors are also popular for use for the entrances to commercial structures.

A tambour door is made of narrow horizontal slats and "rolls" up and down by sliding along vertical tracks and is typically found in entertainment centres and cabinets.

Folding doors

Folding doors (also known as accordion doors) have multiple panels which fold upon one another when such doors are opened. These doors are often used to cover a broad space where a straight door’s swing would be cumbersome or restricted. Folding doors combine the actions of both hinged and slider doors, and use both end pivots and overhead tracks.

Rotating doors

Self Bolting door principle

A revolving door normally has four wings/leaves that hang on a center shaft and rotate one way about a vertical axis. The door may be motorized, or pushed manually using pushbars. People can walk out of and into the building at the same time. Between the point of access and the point of exit the user walks through an airlock. Revolving doors therefore create a good seal from the outside and help to reduce A/C and heating costs climate control from the building. This type of door is also often seen as a mark of prestige and glamour for a building and it not unusual for neighbouring buildings to install their own revolving doors when a rival building gets one.[citation needed]

A butterfly door called because of its two "wings". It consists of a double-wide panel with its rotation axle in the centre, effectively creating two separate openings when the door is opened. Butterfly doors are made to rotate open in one direction (usually counterclockwise), and rotate closed in the opposite direction. The door is not equipped with handles, so it is a "push" door. This is for safety, because if it could open in both directions, someone approaching the door might be caught off-guard by someone else opening the other side, thus impacting the first person. Such doors are popular in public transit stations, as it has a large capacity, and when the door is opened, traffic passing in both directions keeps the door open. They are particularly popular in underground subway stations, because they are heavy, and when air currents are created by the movement of trains, the force will be applied to both wings of the door, thus equalizing the force on either side, keeping the door shut.

A selfbolting door called because of its special hinges that permit to panel leaf making a lateral movement at the place of the bolt so that door itself becomes a giant bolt for better security result.

French Doors derived from an original French design called the casement door, can be created with two out-swinging or in-swinging door panels or two sliding panels or pocket doors.

Others

An up-and-over door is often used in garages. Instead of hinges it has a mechanism, often counterbalanced or sprung, that allows it to be lifted so that it rests horizontally above the opening. Also known as an overhead door. A roller shutter is one variant of this type.

Automatic doors are powered open and closed either by electricity, spring, or both. There are several methods by which an automatic door is activated:

  1. A sensor detects traffic is approaching. Sensors for automatic doors are generally:
    • A pressure sensor - e.g., a floor mat which reacts to the pressure of someone standing on it.
    • An infrared curtain or beam which shines invisible light onto sensors; if someone or something blocks the beam the door is triggered open.
    • A motion sensor which uses low-power microwave radar for the same effect.
    • A remote sensor (e.g. based on infrared or radio waves) can be triggered by a portable remote control, or is installed inside a vehicle. These are popular for garage doors.
  2. A switch is operated manually, perhaps after security checks. This can be a push button switch or a swipe card.
  3. The act of pushing or pulling the door triggers the open and close cycle. These are also known as power-assisted doors.

In addition to activation sensors automatic doors are generally fitted with safety sensors. These are usually an infrared curtain or beam, but can be a pressure mat fitted on the swing side of the door. The purpose of the safety sensor is to prevent the door from colliding with an object in its path by stopping or slowing its motion.

Inward opening doors are doors that can only be opened (or forced open) from outside a building. Such doors pose a substantial fire risk to occupants of occupied buildings when they are locked. As such doors can only be forced open from the outside, building occupants would be prevented from escaping. In commercial and retail situations manufacturers have included in the design a mechanism that allows an inward opening door to be pushed open outwards in the event of an emergency (which is often a regulatory requirement). This is known as a 'breakaway' feature. Pushing the door outward at its closed position, through a switch mechanism, disconnects power to the latch and allows the door to swing outward. Upon returning the door to the closed position, power is restored. The automatic doors were invented by a company called Grupsa System in Spain.

Door construction and components

Parts of a panel and or glazed door
joint between midrail, lockrail and a gunstock stile
A frame and filled door
A hollow door with one face removed

Panel doors

Panel doors, also called stile and rail doors, are built with frame and panel construction:

  • Stiles - Vertical boards that run the full height of a door and compose its right and left edges. The hinges are mounted to the fixed side (known as the "hanging stile"), and the handle, lock, bolt, and/or latch are mounted on the swinging side (known as the "latch stile").
  • Rails - Horizontal boards at the top, bottom, and optionally in the middle of a door that join the two stiles and split the door into two or more rows of panels. The "top rail" and "bottom rail" are named for their positions. The bottom rail is also known as "kick rail". A middle rail at the height of the bolt is known as the "lock rail", other middle rails are commonly known as "cross rails".
  • Mullions - Smaller optional vertical boards that run between two rails, and split the door into two or more columns of panels, the term is used sometimes for verticals in doors, but more often (UK and Australia) it refers to verticals in windows.
  • Muntin - Optional vertical members that divide the door into smaller panels.
  • Panels - Large, wider boards used to fill the space between the stiles, rails, and mullions. The panels typically fit into grooves in the other pieces, and help to keep the door rigid. Panels may be flat, or in raised panel designs.
  • Lights, (UK); Lites, (US) - Pieces of glass used in place of a panel, essentially giving the door a window.

Plank and batten doors

Plank and batten doors are an older design consisting primarily of vertical slats:

  • Planks - Vertical boards that extend the full height of the door, and are placed side by side filling the door's width.
  • Battens - Smaller slats that extend horizontally across the door which the planks are affixed to. The battens hold the planks together. Sometimes a long diagonal slat or two are also implemented to prevent the door from skewing. On some doors, especially antique ones, the battens are replaced with iron bars that are often built into the hinges as extensions of the door-side plates.

Ledged and braced doors

This type consists of vertical tongue and grooved boards held together with battens and diagonal braces.

Frame and filled doors

This type consists of a solid timber frame, filled on one face, face with Tongue and Grooved boards. Quite often used externally with the boards on the weather face.

Flush doors

Many modern doors, including most interior doors, are flush doors:

  • Stiles and rails - As above, but usually smaller. They form the outside edges of the door.
  • Core material: Material within the door used simply to fill space, provide rigidity and reduce druminess.
    • Hollow-core - Often consists of a lattice or honeycomb made of corrugated cardboard, or thin wooden slats. Can also be built with staggered wooden blocks. Hollow-core flush doors are commonly used as interior doors.
      • Lock block - A solid block of wood mounted within a hollow-core flush door near the bolt to provide a solid and stable location for mounting the door's hardware.
    • Stave-core - Consists of wooden slats stacked upon one another in a manner similar to a plank & batten door (though the slats are usually thinner) or the wooden-block hollow-core (except that the space is entirely filled).
    • Solid-core - Can consist of low-density particle board or foam used to completely fill the space within the door. Solid-core flush doors (especially foam-core ones) are commonly used as exterior doors because they provide more insulation and strength.
  • Skin - The front and back faces of the door are then covered with wood veneer, thin plywood, sheet metal, fiberglass, or vinyl. The wooden materials are usually layered with the grain alternating direction between layers to prevent warping. Fiberglass and metal-faced doors are sometimes given a layer of cellulose so that they may be stained to look like real wood.

Moulded doors

  • Stiles and rails - As above, but usually smaller. They form the outside edges of the door.
  • Core material: Material within the door used simply to fill space, provide rigidity and reduce druminess.
    • Hollow-core - Often consists of a lattice or honeycomb made of corrugated cardboard, or thin wooden slats. Can also be built with staggered wooden blocks. Hollow-core flush doors are commonly used as interior doors.
      • Lock block - A solid block of wood mounted within a hollow-core flush door near the bolt to provide a solid and stable location for mounting the door's hardware.
    • Stave-core - Consists of wooden slats stacked upon one another in a manner similar to a plank & batten door (though the slats are usually thinner) or the wooden-block hollow-core (except that the space is entirely filled).
    • Solid-core - Can consist of low-density particle board or foam used to completely fill the space within the door. Solid-core flush doors (especially foam-core ones) are commonly used as exterior doors because they provide more insulation and strength.
  • Skin - The front and back faces of the door are covered with HDF / MDF skins.

Swing direction

Door swing directions diagram.

Door swings Door swings, or handing, are always determined from the secure side of the door (i.e., the side you use the key on, outside to inside, or public to private).

  • Left hand hinge (LHH): If the hinges are on the left and the door opens in, it's a left hand door.
  • Right hand hinge (RHH): If the hinges are on the right and the door opens in, it's a right hand door.
  • Left hand reverse (LHR): Standing in the house, the hinges are on the right, knob of left, pushing the door to the outside (outswing)
  • Right hand reverse (RHR): Standing in the house, the hinges are on the left, knob of right, pushing the door to the outside (outswing)

Note: In Australia, this is different. The refrigerator rule applies (you can't stand in a fridge, the door always opens towards you) - If the hinges are on the left then its a left hand (or left hung) door. If the hinges are on the right then its a right hand (or right hung) door. See the Australian Standards for Installation of Timber Doorsets, AS 1909-1984 pg 6.

Dimensions

A standard US door size 36" x 80" (0.91 m x 2.03 m).

Exterior and passage (room to room) doors: Standard door sizes in the US are from 2'6" to 3' wide, increasing in 2" increments. Most residential interior doors are 2'6" wide except when designed to allow wheelchair access, then 3'. Residential doors are 6'8" high, as are many small stores, offices, and other light commercial buildings. Larger commercial and public buildings often use doors of greater height. Older buildings often have smaller doors.

Closets: small spaces such as closets, dressing rooms, half-baths, storage rooms, cellars, etc. often are accessed through doors smaller than passage doors in one or both dimensions but similar in design.

Garages: Garage doors are generally 7' or 8' wide for a single-car opening.

A diagram illustrating the components of a panel door

Doorway components

When framed in wood for snug fitting of a door, the doorway consists of two vertical jambs on either side, a lintel or head jamb at the top, and perhaps a threshold at the bottom. When a door has more than one movable section, one of the sections may be called a leaf. See door furniture for a discussion of attachments to doors such as door handles and doorknobs.

  • Lintel - A horizontal beam above a door that supports the wall above it. (Also known as a header)
  • Jambs - The vertical posts that form the sides of a door frame, where the hinges are mounted, and with which the bolt interacts.
  • Sill - A horizontal beam below the door that supports the frame
  • Doorstop - a thin slat built inside the frame to prevent a door from swinging through when closed, which might break the hinges.
  • Architrave - The decorative molding that outlines a door frame. (called an Archivolt if the door is arched). Called door casing or brickmold in North America.

Related hardware

See main article: Door furniture

Door furniture or hardware refers to any of the items that are attached to a door or a drawer to enhance its functionality or appearance. This includes items such as hinges, handles, door stops, etc.

History

An old door (20th Century CE), Kashan, Iran

The earliest records are those represented in the paintings of the Egyptian tombs, in which they are shown as single or double doors, each in a single piece of wood. In Egypt, where the climate is intensely dry, there would be no fear of their warping, but in other countries it would be necessary to frame them, which according to Vitruvius (iv. 6.) was done with stiles (sea/si) and rails (see: Frame and panel): the spaces enclosed being filled with panels (tympana) let into grooves made in the stiles and rails. The stiles were the vertical boards, one of which, tenoned or hinged, is known as the hanging stile, the other as the middle or meeting stile. The horizontal cross pieces are the top rail, bottom rail, and middle or intermediate rails. The most ancient doors were in timber, those made for King Solomon's temple being in olive wood (I Kings vi. 31-35), which were carved and overlaid with gold. The doors dwelt upon in Homer would appear to have been cased in silver or brass. Besides Olive wood, elm, cedar, oak and cypress were used.

Stone door, Hampi, India

All ancient doors were hung by pivots at the top and bottom of the hanging stile which worked in sockets in the lintel and sill, the latter being always in some hard stone such as basalt or granite. Those found at Nippur by Dr. Hilprecht, dating from 2000 B.C. were in dolerite. The tenons of the gates at Balawat were sheathed with bronze (now in the British Museum). These doors or gates were hung in two leaves, each about 8 ft 4 in (2.54 m) wide and 27 ft (8.2 m). high; they were encased with bronze bands or strips, 10 in. high, covered with repouss decoration of figures, etc. The wood doors would seem to have been about 3 in. thick, but the hanging stile was over 14 inches (360 mm) diameter. Other sheathings of various sizes in bronze have been found, which proves this to have been the universal method adopted to protect the wood pivots. In the Hauran in Syria, where timber is scarce the doors were made in stone, and one measuring 5 ft 4 in (1.63 m) by 2 ft 7 in (0.79 m) is in the British Museum; the band on the meeting stile shows that it was one of the leaves of a double door. At Kuffeir near Bostra in Syria, Burckhardt found stone doors, 9 to 10 ft (3.0 m). high, being the entrance doors of the town. In Etruria many stone doors are referred to by Dennis.

Roman folding doors at Pompeii (1st century CE).

The ancient Greek and Roman doors were either single doors, double doors, sliding doors or folding doors, in the last case the leaves were hinged and folded back. In Eumachia, is a painting of a door with three leaves. In the tomb of Theron at Agrigentum there is a single four-panel door carved in stone. In the Blundell collection is a bas-relief of a temple with double doors, each leaf with five panels. Among existing examples, the bronze doors in the church of SS. Cosmas and Damiano, in Rome, are important examples of Roman metal work of the best period; they are in two leaves, each with two panels, and are framed in bronze. Those of the Pantheon are similar in design, with narrow horizontal panels in addition, at the top, bottom and middle. Two other bronze doors of the Roman period are in the Lateran Basilica.

Heron of Alexandria created the earliest known automatic door in the 1st century CE during the era of Roman Egypt.[2] The first foot-sensor-activated automatic door was made in China during the reign of Emperor Yang of Sui (r. 604–618), who had one installed for his royal library.[2] The first automatic gate operators were later created in 1206 by the Arabic inventor, Al-Jazari.[3]

The doors of the church of the Nativity at Bethlehem (6th century) are covered with plates of bronze, cut out in patterns: those of Hagia Sophia at Constantinople, of the 8th and 9th century, are wrought in bronze, and the west doors of the cathedral of Aix-la-Chapelle (9th century), of similar manufacture, were probably brought from Constantinople, as also some of those in St. Marks, Venice.

Ornate door. Roman wall painting in the Villa Boscoreale, Italy (1st century CE).

Of the 11th and 12th centuries there are numerous examples of bronze doors, the earliest being one at Hildesheim, Germany (1015). The Hildesheim design affected the concept of Gniezno door in Poland. Of others in South Italy and Sicily, the following are the finest: in Sant Andrea, Amalfi (1060); Salerno (1099); Canosa (1111); Troia, two doors (1119 and 1124); Ravello (1179), by Barisano of Trani, who also made doors for Trani cathedral; and in Monreale and Pisa cathedrals, by Bonano of Pisa. In all these cases the hanging stile had pivots at the top and bottom. The exact period when the hinge was substituted is not quite known, but the change apparently brought about another method of strengthening and decorating doors, viz, with wrought-iron bands of infinite varieties of design. As a rule three bands from which the ornamental work springs constitute the hinges, which have rings outside the hanging stiles fitting on to vertical tenons run into the masonry or wooden frame. There is an early example of the 12th century in Lincoln; in France the metal work of the doors of Notre Dame at Paris is perhaps the most beautiful in execution, but examples are endless throughout France and England.

Returning to Italy, the most celebrated doors are those of the Battistero di San Giovanni (Florence), which together with the door frames are all in bronze, the borders of the latter being perhaps the most remarkable: the modeling of the figures, birds and foliage of the south doorway, by Andrea Pisano (1330), and of the east doorway by Ghiberti (1425-1452), are of great beauty; in the north door (1402-1424) Ghiberti adopted the same scheme of design for the paneling and figure subjects in them as Andrea Pisano, but in the east door the rectangular panels are all filled, with bas-reliefs, in which Scripture subjects are illustrated with innumerable figures, these being probably the gates of Paradise of which Michelangelo speaks.

An old door (20th Century CE), Isfahan, Iran

The doors of the mosques in Cairo were of two kinds; those which, externally, were cased with sheets of bronze or iron, cut out in decorative patterns, and incised or inlaid, with bosses in relief; and those in wood, which were framed with interlaced designs of the square and diamond, this latter description of work being Coptic in its origin. The doors of the palace at Palermo, which were made by Saracenic workmen for the Normans, are fine examples and in good preservation. A somewhat similar decorative class of door to these latter is found in Verona, where the edges of the stiles and rails are beveled and notched.

In the Renaissance period the Italian doors are quite simple, their architects trusting more to the doorways for effect; but in France and Germany the contrary is the case, the doors being elaborately carved, especially in the Louis XIV and Louis XV periods, and sometimes with architectural features such as columns and entablatures with pediment and niches, the doorway being in plain masonry. While in Italy the tendency was to give scale by increasing the number of panels, in France the contrary seems to have been the rule; and one of the great doors at Fontainebleau, which is in two leaves, is entirely carried out as if consisting of one great panel only.

The earliest Renaissance doors in France are those of the cathedral of St. Sauveur at Aix (1503). In the lower panels there are figures 3 ft (0.91 m). high in Gothic niches, and in the upper panels a double range of niches with figures about 2 ft (0.61 m). high with canopies over them, all carved in cedar. The south door of Beauvais Cathedral is in some respects the finest in France; the upper panels are carved in high relief with figure subjects and canopies over them. The doors of the church at Gisors (1575) are carved with figures in niches subdivided by classic pilasters superimposed. In St. Maclou at Rouen are three magnificently carved doors; those by Jean Goujon have figures in niches on each side, and others in a group of great beauty in the center. The other doors, probably about forty to fifty years later, are enriched with bas-reliefs, landscapes, figures and elaborate interlaced borders.

The oldest door in England can be found in Westminster Abbey and dates from 1050.[4] In England in the 17th century the door panels were raised with bolection or projecting moldings, sometimes richly carved, round them; in the 18th century the moldings worked on the stiles and rails were carved with the egg and tongue ornament.

See also

References

  1. ^ See, for example the doorkeeping duties of the Gentleman Usher of the Black Rod.
  2. ^ a b Needham, Joseph. (1986). Science and Civilization in China: Volume 4, Part 2, Mechanical Engineering. Taipei: Caves Books, Ltd.
  3. ^ Howard R. Turner (1997), Science in Medieval Islam: An Illustrated Introduction, p. 181, University of Texas Press, ISBN 0292781490.
  4. ^ BBC NEWS | UK | Abbey oak door 'Britain's oldest'

External links


1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

DOOR (corresponding to the Gr. Obpa, Lat. fores or valvae; the English word, with other forms common in allied languages, comes from the same Indo-European stem as the Gr. Obpa and Lat. fores), in architecture, the slab, flap or leaf forming the enclosure of a doorway, either in wood, metal or stone. The earliest records are those represented in the paintings of the Egyptian tombs, in which they are shown as single or double doors, each in a single piece of wood. In Egypt, where the climate is intensely dry, there would be no fear of their warping, but in other countries it would be necessary to frame them, which according to Vitruvius (iv. 6.) was done with stiles (scapi) and rails (impages) : the spaces enclosed being filled with panels (tympana) let into grooves made in the stiles and rails. The stiles were the vertical boards, one of which, tenoned or hinged, is known as the hanging stile, the other as the middle or meeting stile. The horizontal cross pieces are the top rail, bottom rail, and middle or intermediate rails. The most ancient doors were in timber, those made for King Solomon's temple being in olive wood (1 Kings vi. 31-35), which were carved and overlaid with gold. The doors dwelt upon in Homer would appear to have been cased in silver or brass. Besides olive wood, elm, cedar, oak and cyprus were used. All ancient doors were hung by pivots at the top and bottom of the hanging stile which worked in sockets in the lintel and cill, the latter being always in some hard stone such as basalt or granite. Those found at Nippur by Dr Hilprecht, dating from 2000 B.C., were in dolorite. The tenons of the gates at Balawat (see fig.) (895-825 B.C.) were sheathed with bronze (now in the British Museum). These doors or gates were hung in two leaves, each about 8 ft. 4 in. wide and 27 ft. high; they were encased with bronze bands or strips, 10 in. high, covered with repousse decoration of figures, &c. The wood doors would seem to have been about 3 in. thick, but the hanging stile was over 14 in. in diameter. Other sheathings of various sizes in bronze have been found, which proves this to have been the universal method adopted to protect the wood pivots. In the Hauran in Syria, where timber is scarce, the doors were made in stone, and one measuring 5 ft. 4 in. by 2 ft. 7 in. is in the British Museum; the band on the meeting stile shows that it was one of the leaves of a double door. At Kuffeir near Bostra in Syria, Burckhardt found stone doors, 9 to 10 ft. high, being the entrance doors of the town. In Etruria many stone doors are referred to by Dennis.

The ancient Greek and Roman doors were either single doors (µov00Upat, unifores), double doors (&thipat, bifores or geminae) or folding doors (7rr1)1(Es, valvae); in the last case the leaves were hinged and folded back one over Balawat Gates, the other. At Pompeii, in the portico of sheath and socket. Eumachia, is a painting of a door with three From History of Art leaves, the two outer ones of which were in Chaldaea and As- syria, by permission of presumably hung, the inner leaf folding on Chapman & Hall Ltd. one or the other; hinges connecting the folding leaves of a door have been found in Pompeii. In the tomb of Theron at Agrigentum there is a single four-panel door carved in stone. In the Blundell collection is a bas-relief of a temple with double doors, each leaf with five panels. Among existing examples, the bronze doors in the church of SS. Cosmas and Damiano, in Rome, are important examples of Roman metal work of the best period; they are in two leaves, each with two panels, and are framed in bronze. Those of the Pantheon are similar in design, with narrow horizontal panels in addition, at the top, bottom and middle. Two other bronze doors of the Roman period are in the Lateran Basilica.

The doors of the church of the Nativity at Bethlehem (6th century) are covered with plates of bronze, cut out in patterns: those of Sta Sophia at Constantinople, of the 8th and 9th century, are wrought in bronze, and the west doors of the cathedral of Aix-la-Chapelle (9th century), of similar manufacture, were probably brought from Constantinople, as also some of those in St Mark's, Venice.

Of the 11th and 12th centuries there are numerous examples of bronze doors, the earliest being one at Hildesheim, Germany (1015). Of others in South Italy and Sicily, the following are the finest: in Sant' Andrea, Amalfi (r 060); Salerno (1099); Canosa (1111); Troja, two doors (1119 and 1124); Ravello (1179), by Barisano of Trani, who also made doors for Trani cathedral; and in Monreale and Pisa cathedrals, by Bonano of Pisa. In all these cases the hanging stile had pivots at the top and bottom. The exact period when the hinge was substituted is not quite known, but the change apparently brought about another method of strengthening and decorating doors, viz. with wrought-iron bands of infinite varieties of design. As a rule three bands from which the ornamental work springs constitute the hinges, which have rings outside the hanging stiles fitting on to vertical tenons run into the masonry or wooden frame. There is an early example of the 12th century in Lincoln; in France the metal work of the doors of Notre Dame at Paris is perhaps the most beautiful in execution, but examples are endless throughout France and England.

Returning to Italy, the most celebrated doors are those of the Baptistery of Florence, which together with the door frames are all in bronze, the borders of the latter being perhaps the most remarkable: the modelling of the figures, birds and foliage of the south doorway, by Andrea Pisano (1330), and of the east doorway by Ghiberti (1425-1452), are of great beauty; in the north door (1402-1424) Ghiberti adopted the same scheme of design for the panelling and figure subjects in them as Andrea Pisano, but in the east door the rectangular panels are all filled with bas-reliefs, in which Scripture subjects are illustrated with innumerable figures, these being probably the gates of Paradise of which Michelangelo speaks.

The doors of the mosques in Cairo were of two kinds; those which, externally, were cased with sheets of bronze or iron, cut out in decorative patterns, and incised or inlaid, with bosses in relief; and those in wood, which were framed with interlaced designs of the square and diamond, this latter description of work being Coptic in its origin. The doors of the palace at Palermo, which were made by Saracenic workmen for the Normans, are fine examples and in good preservation. A somewhat similar decorative class of door to these latter is found in Verona, where the edges of the stiles and rails are bevelled and notched.

In the Renaissance period the Italian doors are quite simple, their architects trusting more to the doorways for effect; but in France and Germany the contrary is the case, the doors being elaborately carved, especially in the Louis XIV. and Louis XV. periods, and sometimes with architectural features such as columns and entablatures with pediment and niches, the doorway being in plain masonry. While in Italy the tendency was to give scale by increasing the number of panels, in France the contrary seems to have been the rule; and one of the great doors at Fontainebleau, which is in two leaves, is entirely carried out as if consisting of one great panel only.

The earliest Renaissance doors in France are those of the cathedral of St Sauveur at Aix (1503); in the lower panels there are figures 3 ft. high in Gothic niches, and in the upper panels a double range of niches with figures about 2 ft. high with canopies over them, all carved in cedar. The south door of Beauvais cathedral is in some respects the finest in France; the upper panels are carved in high relief with figure subjects and canopies over them. The doors of the church at Gisors (1575) are carved with figures in niches subdivided by classic pilasters superimposed. In St Maclou at Rouen are three magnificently carved doors; those by Jean Goujon have figures in niches on each side, and others in a group of great beauty in the centre. The other doors, probably about forty to fifty years later, are enriched with basreliefs, landscapes, figures and elaborate interlaced borders.

In England in the 17th century the door panels were raised with "bolection" or projecting mouldings, sometimes richly carved, round them; in the 18th century the mouldings worked on the stiles and rails were carved with the egg and tongue ornament. (R. P. S.)


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Bible wiki

Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From BibleWiki

Doors were suspended and moved by means of pivots of wood (potot) which projected from the ends of the two folds above and below. The pivots were inserted in sockets (ẓirim, Prov 26:14). Doors were fastened by a lock, (Song 5:5; Neh 3:3) or by a bar (Jdg 16:3; Job 38:10), and were opened by a key, called "mafteaḥ" (Judges iii. 25), generally of wood. The rich and powerful probably used keys of metal, which may sometimes have been adorned with an ivory handle. Such a key may have been the one assigned to the steward of the royal palace as a mark of his office, and which he carried on his shoulder (Isa. xxii. 22).

The expression "door-post" occurs twice in the Old Testament, rendering two different terms; viz., "saf" (Ezek. xli. 16), "sill," or, as translated in Judges xix. 27, "threshold," and "mashḳof" (Ex. xii. 7), also rendered (Ex. xii. 22, 23) as "lintel." In Ex. xii. 7, 22 the Israelites were commanded to sprinkle the blood of the Passover lamb on the lintel and side-posts of their houses; and in Deut. vi. 9 Moses enjoined the Israelites to write the divine commands "upon the posts ["mezuzot"] of thy house."

These injunctions prove that among the Hebrews, as among many other peoples, the door-posts were an important feature in the religious and superstitious rites, the purpose of which was to protect the house and its inmates against evil spirits and notably against the evil eye. The Deuteronomic law clearly presupposes the practise, and intends the replacing of obnoxious idolatrous inscriptions by the words here given. In modern Mohammedan countries it is still the custom to write over or on the door quotations from the Koran (Lane, "Modern Egyptians," 5th ed., 1871, i. 7, 319, quoted by Driver, "Deuteronomy," p. 93). A similar device to secure "a good abode" is reported of the ancient Egyptians (Wilkinson-Birch, "Ancient Egyptians," 2d ed., 1878, p. 361, in Driver, l.c.).

The nailing over the door of a horseshoe, or the hanging of a sprig with appropriate inscriptions, has been generally in vogue among the Teutonic races, and survived even after the introduction of Christianity. Of the Sephardic Jews in Palestine and Africa it is reported that they paint on their door in red a hand with five outspread fingers to secure immunity from the evil eye (Luncz, "Jerusalem," i. p. 19 of Hebrew part, Vienna, 1882). For the rabbinical interpretation of the Deuteronomic law see Mezuzah.

This entry includes text from the Jewish Encyclopedia, 1906.


moved on pivots of wood fastened in sockets above and below (Prov. 26:14). They were fastened by a lock (Judg. 3:23, 25; Cant. 5:5) or by a bar (Judg. 16:3; Job 38:10). In the interior of Oriental houses, curtains were frequently used instead of doors.

The entrances of the tabernacle had curtains (Ex. 26:31-33, 36). The "valley of Achor" is called a "door of hope," because immediately after the execution of Achan the Lord said to Joshua, "Fear not," and from that time Joshua went forward in a career of uninterrupted conquest. Paul speaks of a "door opened" for the spread of the gospel (1 Cor. 16:9; 2 Cor. 2:12; Col. 4:3). Our Lord says of himself, "I am the door" (John 10:9). John (Rev. 4:1) speaks of a "door opened in heaven."

This entry includes text from Easton's Bible Dictionary, 1897.

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Simple English

A door is a hard, flat object a person can open and close so that person can go into a room or other place. It is found in houses and other buildings. Doors are also found in cars and cages.

The reasons for a door are:

  • for people, animals, and objects to go through; some doors are for emergencies only (emergency exit)
  • to keep cold or hot air outside (or inside, such as the door on a refrigerator)
  • so that people cannot see or hear what happens on the other side (privacy and stopping noise)
  • so that people do not fall out of the car or other vehicle
  • so a person can decide who to let in--many doors have a lock

= Types of doors

=

A revolving door is a group of doors that turn in a circle as a person pushes one. The person can go through, but wind and rain cannot get in.

A blind door is a fake door that is really part of the wall. People use them to make a room look nice.

An up-and-over door is often used in garages. Instead of hinges, it rolls up on rails so that it stays above the opening.

A fire door is a door that does not let fire go through. They are usually made of heavy steel.bjn:Lawang








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