The Verandas

A distinctive architectural feature : the latticed wooden verandas

The Casa dei Turchi is characterised by wooden verandas on the side facing the river, which is typical of traditional Arab Architecture: the lean-to windows with ornate wooden trellis known as Mashrabija. Widespread primarily in the eastern parts of the Arab world from the Middle Ages to the mid 20th c. They were fitted to street windows to allow women to see what was happening outside without being seen.

This window construction, partially protruding and hinged, is made of latticed or perforated wood. Historical documents provide no indication of the date of construction of this latticed feature which gives the building its unique Middle Eastern character. 

A drawing by Joahanna von Isser Grossrubatscher in 1836 documents the presence of verandas with recognizable covering on Casa dei Turchi. The drawing by Basilio Armani from the second half of the 19th c. clearly shows the railings for the veranda which were in fact put in in 1870. The closing panels on the veranda however are not visible, added as they were at a later period as confirmed by the type of glass in the doors and windows. The latticed overhead panels were an effective alternative to shutters for the doors and windows, which in that space would have been impossible.

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