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XII] SLATED ROOFS 185

most requiredl.’ Nevertheless, to us, the buildings of the early
seventeenth century appear exceedingly solid and well built.

In the year 1314 it was found that certain of the royal manor
houses and castles which were roofed with wooden shingles were
greatly in need of repair, and that they might be roofed at a less
cost with stone slates or earthen tiles2. Professor Thorold Rogers
found that the use of shingles hardly lasted after the fourteenth
century“, and J. H. Parker also noticed a decline in this method of
roofing in the same century, which was a period of great improve-
ment in social conditions.

In England the use of shingles is now confined to such
structures as church spires, and those only in the South-Eastern
counties, but the English in America used them for roofing all
kinds of buildings. They are still used there .and made of
various timbers, such as redwood, cypress and cedar, and are
sawn about 16in. long and in random widths from 2.} in. to
14in.

It is not easy in the mediaeval building accounts to tell
whether ‘sclats’ or slates are of wood, stone, or tiles. In the
churchwardens’ accounts of St Michael’s, Bath, twelve pence is
paid for ‘sclattyng’ a house floor, and at the present time we use
the word ‘slats’ for short, flat pieces of wood. In many modern
dialects the word ‘slats’ is applied to roofing slates, as at
Mansfield, in Nottinghamshire, and in the Cotswolds. In both
of these localities the term is applied to stone slates. It would
appear that the early builders did not distinguish between wooden
and stone slates, and similarly, the Irish word ‘ slinn,’ which is now
applied to slates, was formerly applied to shingles.

The use of stone slates and of artificial tiles in this country
extends to the beginning of the historic period—that is, the time
of the Roman occupation—and it is unsafe to assume that the use
of either was copied from the other.

In the accounts of Finchale Priory", the Latin word ‘tegula,’
that is, a tile, is applied to stone slates from Esh, while in a
fifteenth century agreement for the rebuilding of a house at
‘ Haldisworth Inge,’ near Halifax, it is stipulated to be covered

1 Bret/iary of Suffolk, p. 50.

2 H. Parker, Domestic A rc/ziteotun: in Egg/and from Edward I to Richard I], p. 8.
3 History of Agriculture and Prices, 1, p 492.

" Priory of Finc/zale, published by the Surtees Society, p. ccccl.

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