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P M

@Webado, I some modest Victorian era houses the kitchens were built almost as attached sheds, sticking out from the main house and under a separate roof. I was told — and I have no idea whether this is true — that this was done because kitchen fires were common and building this way protected the main house from fire.

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User

Summer kitchens were very popular prior to air conditioning, particularly in the history of western cultures as well as the "old world" if the peasants had money and property of which most did not. Summer kitchens were a necessity as you pointed out to prevent heat or odor penetrating the house where people slept and gathered. They were either separate or attached at the back.

Summer kitchens had various names including "out kitchen", "back kitchen" or simply kitchen. They were very popular in the South, though many northern homes had summer kitchens as part of the house. Interesting history with mostly 18th century houses.

In medieval times (aka middle ages) of European nobles, kitchens were sometimes separate in a sunken floor building to keep the main building free from odor and smoke. The main building was for social and official purposes. Otherwise most houses had an open fire under the highest point of the building and the kitchen open area was between entrance and fireplace. It also kept the building warm. Castles and monasteries separated the living and working areas. Sometimes the kitchen was moved to a separate building, but couldn't heat the main. Others kept the kitchen in the main building but servants were always separated from the nobles. That's where the "back stairs" became popular!

When the chimney was developed, that changed things and the kitchen was used to heat upper floors. The medieval smoke kitchen was most common amoung the rural farmhouses and poor folks until middle of 20th century. They used a smoke "hood" instead of chimney above the fireplace used to smoke meat. Smoke rose more or less upwards warming upper rooms and protect wood from vermin.

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Webado Webada

I was born in a small house in Eastern Europe, which consisted of exactly 3 rooms, one of which was designated as kitchen, another was living/dining room and finally a bedroom. I called the living/dining room my bedroom when I didn't sleep in my parents' room. I was a young child, I had no notion of space requirements. I was happy.

When my grandfather had this little house built he'd also started building another structure outside meant to eventually be connected to the main house by some covered or even enclosed breezeway. That structure was meant to be the actual kitchen. It was sitting on top of a cellar you entered from the outside, with a slanted door. He got as far as to build the brick walls and a roof, but no door to the building. The floor was just planks that had yet to be solidified.

This never got finished and by the time I was 8 it was rather a ruin, where we stored junk. It had become my play area, with so many things for me to discover among all the rubbish. Mom had to forbid me from going there when I nearly fell through the rotted floor boards into the cellar. To me as a child it was a wondrous place. To everybody else it was an embarrassing eye-sore.

That only got finished after we sold the house and moved to a different city, into a (then) modern apartment, with better amenities: central heating so no longer having to bring in firewood or coal, cold and hot running water and a bedroom of my own.

Seems the new owners of our original little house did some good renovations and that structure became another wing of the main house which they also renovated, complete with water and sewage. I didn't see it but I was told that everything in both the main house and that extension looked nice, clean and tidy. I still remember it as it was in 1963 when we moved from there.

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