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Part of a box flue tile

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This was a tile made in the shape of a hollow box. A stack of these would be built into the walls of a bathroom, creating a gap in the wall. A fire would be lit under the floor, the hot air would rise up into the gap and heat the room - Roman central heating! This was called a hypocaust system. The markings were made by a comb dragged across the clay when it was wet, before it was fired in a kiln. This was called keying and would help a layer of wall plaster to stick to the tile.

3rd Dec 2008

Art and Design, Design and Technology, English, History, Science

Key Stages:
Key Stage 2

Roman, flue, tile, heating, hypocaust, clay, keying, plaster, fire, central heating.

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