Theses (Historic Preservation)

Document Type

Thesis or dissertation

Date of this Version



Suggested Citation:

Xia, Wenwen (2015). An Investigation of Chinese Historical Grey Bricks of Soochow, Jiangsu and the Effect of Tung Oil Treatment. (Masters Thesis). University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA.


The grey brick is one of the key materials to Chinese traditional architecture. While brick-making in Europe and North America is well documented in sufficient literature, the kiln, firing and properties of the Chinese grey brick is to be explored more in detail. The process gives the bricks a different character and color. Bunches of Chinese literature and informal records show the outstanding character of Chinese grey bricks. And it is why historical grey bricks were commonly used in architectural buildings, city walls, mausoleum. This thesis is aimed to verify the good properties of Chinese grey brick through experiments, and investigate the effect of Tung oil in the treatment of brick materials, especially grey bricks.


China, grey brick, Tung oil, microstructure, durability



Date Posted: 31 August 2015