Dwellings @ The materials used in buildings were commonly bricks, sometimes also stones Leviticus:14:40-42), which were held together by cement Jeremiah:43:9) or bitumen Genesis:11:3). The exterior was usually whitewashed Leviticus:14:41; Ezekiel:13:10; Matthew:23:27). The beams were of sycamore Isaiah:9:10), or olive-wood, or cedar (kjvKings:7:2; Isaiah:9:10). The form of Eastern dwellings differed in many respects from that of dwellings in Western lands. The larger houses were built in a quadrangle enclosing a court-yard Luke:5:19; 2Samuel:17:18; Nehemiah:8:16) surrounded by galleries, which formed the guest-chamber or reception-room for visitors. The flat roof, surrounded by a low parapet, was used for many domestic and social purposes. It was reached by steps from the court. In connection with it ( 2Kings:23:12) was an upper room, used as a private chamber ( 2Samuel:18:33; Daniel:6:11), also as a bedroom ( 2Kings:23:12), a sleeping apartment for guests ( 2Kings:4:10), and as a sick-chamber (kjvKings:17:19). The doors, sometimes of stone, swung on morticed pivots, and were generally fastened by wooden bolts. The houses of the more wealthy had a doorkeeper or a female porter John:18:16; Acts:12:13). The windows generally opened into the courtyard, and were closed by a lattice Judges:5:28). The interior rooms were set apart for the female portion of the household. The furniture of the room ( 2Kings:4:10) consisted of a couch furnished with pillows Amos:6:4; Ezekiel:13:20); and besides this, chairs, a table and lanterns or lamp-stands ( 2Kings:4:10).