18 OCTOBER 1919, Page 12


[To THE EDITOR-OF THE " SPECTATOR."] SIR,--Y011 ask for instances of buildings in Pise de Terre in England. Presumably you are also interested in such buildings in Scotland. In the Carse of Cowrie there are many old houses built of the clay characteristic of Carse land. Such buildings must have been known in Ayrshire also in the time of Burns, who speaks of the " Auld Clay biggin " in which he was born. The clay walls in the Carse consist of clay with a few waterworn stones. No straw or " shale" has been used in building. I cannot say how the walls were built, but the clay has been well rammed, and there is no evidence of water being used, ether than the natural moisture of the clay. After repeated coatings of whitewash—the accumulation of many years—the walls are indistinguishable from stone walls, similarly washed, till the surface is broken.—I am, Sir, &c., Glasgow. JAMES HAMILTON.