Abu Saeed prepares the house for plastering, using small chinkstones and mortar to fill cracks and create a flat substrate for the interior plaster. Although obscuring the beautiful view of exposed stonemasonry, interior plaster was necessary for insulation and to prevent household pests from taking over.
Plasters also improve interior lighting by brightening up the colors of the walls. We discovered that mixing chalk with the earth plaster give a bright yet warm tonality to the home. More wealthy residences and public buildings – such as our synagogue – were finished in white lime plaster and occasionally painted.