Mashhad is a city with many historical neighborhoods which were once home to some valuable houses. However, change of lifestyle, development plans, migration and economic changes modified a great part of the valuable urban fabric. The introduction and recognition of houses in Mashhad as a historical city is both essential and important aside from the positive or negative effects of these changes. In this article, it is attempted to explore the possibility of typological categorization of Mashhad's historical houses. The concepts of "typology" and "housing" were examined and reviewed based on documents, upon which the residential history and architectural features of the residential fabric of the city’s historical core were studied. Furthermore, formal characteristics and orientations of residential units influenced by climatic conditions were considered, and a number of historical houses were examined based on their time of construction, their physical elements, and architectural components. The results of this study enable the distinction and categorization of historical houses based on their formal features, for example, the form of the entrance portal, vestibule, hallway, courtyard, and iwan, or the mode of interior and exterior facade decorations. The three residential types include two Qajar-era types (first-half and second-half) with an introvert architecture, and a third type of the Pahlavi I era with an extrovert architecture. These types are expressive of their time conditions and transformations of Iranian architectural paradigms under influence of Western architecture, as well as socio-cultural transformations in the Iranian society.
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