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several feet high, and large and wide enough to hold many thousand bricks at once.
It may seem very easy work to make bricks, but a brick, like every
a thing else that is worth making, cannot be made well without taking pains.
First of all, the brickmaker must look for the right kind of clay. Then he digs it up and leaves it in the air for some time, turning it over again and again, that every bit of the clay may be exposed to the sun and rain.
It is next mixed with sand, or coalashes, and ground in a mill, or else put into a pit where it is well-trodden down by men or by cattle, and water is mixed with it so that it becomes a stiff paste.
This paste is all chopped and beaten, and turned over with a shovel, and worked up into a great clay pudding. And then a slice of it is cut off, rolled out and put into a mould.
The mould is a box without a lid, just the size and shape that the brick is to be. The moulder dips his box into a
heap of dry sand first, or else the clay would stick to the sides of it; then he presses in the clay, and it comes out again neatly shaped, and smooth, and ready to be dried and baked.
Besides bricks, the builder must have mortar to fasten them together. Mortar is made of lime and sand,—or ashes, mixed with water. Although it is soft at first, it grows hard with time; in an old wall the mortar is very nearly as hard as the bricks.
When the bricklayer begins to build, he must first dig a deep trench for the foundation of the house, and spread a thick bed of mortar over the bottom of it. Then he lays his first course of bricks upon the mortar, spreads more mortar on the top of them, and places a second course of bricks.
So he will go on, adding more bricks and more mortar till the walls are as high as he means them to be.
THE PARTS OF A HOUSE.WOOD, PLASTER, AND PAINT. As soon as the walls are built, our house must be covered in with some kind of sloping roof to carry off the rain-water.
The outer covering of the roof may be thatch, which is made of straw or reeds; or tiles, which are made of clay, like bricks; or slate, which is hewn out of the earth.
This outer covering must have some support to rest upon, and this is made of wood.
The carpenter must make a wooden frame of the shape which he wishes the roof to be, and this frame must be fixed upon the walls of the house.
The sloping beams of the roof are called rafters; and across the rafters
laths are nailed, upon which the thatch, tiles, or slates may be laid.
There is plenty more work for the carpenter. He must make frames for the windows and doors, and must also put in window-sashes and the doors themselves. Besides this the house must be divided into stories and rooms; there must be floors and partitions, and a staircase to go up from the lower to the higher stories,
All this is carpenters' work. The floors and the steps of the staircase are made of smooth boards or planks fitting nicely one to another, and supported by good stout joists or beams.
Partitions are made of strong framework with laths nailed across, and covered with a kind of mortar called “plaster.” Underneath the joists which support the floors of the upper rooms laths are nailed, which, when plastered over, form the ceiling of the room below.
But there is still much to be done before our house is fit to live in.
The walls must be plastered and the ceilings whitewashed; the doors and other woodwork must be painted, and the walls papered. Other workmen, again, must be called in to put up cupboards and shelves, to fix grates in our fireplaces, to
locks and handles and bolts, and to complete all the other fittings of our house.
THE PARTS OF A HOUSE.
GLASS. The carpenter has made our windowframes ; but our house
but our house will not be finished until we have called in the glazier.
We should think it a dismal house, which had no glass in the windows, yet, in old times, there was scarcely a house in England which had any ; the windows were filled up with thin pieces of horn, or linen cloth, or with wooden lattice-work.