Lowell House regained prominence this year as the most popular House among freshmen, a Crimson poll of 250 freshmen indicates. Freshmen submitted their choices for this year's housing lottery yesterday.
Last year, Lowell dropped from second-to eighth-ranked choice, when it was chosen by only 8 per cent of the students polled. Yesterday's results were much closer than in past years, with a difference of no more than 1 per cent separating Lowell and each of the next most popular Houses, Dunster and Adams.
Winthrop House, the favorite first choice in last year's Crimson poll, dropped from 17 per cent to 11 per cent this year, tying Kirkland House for fourth place.
Students surveyed said "atmosphere" and locations were the most important considerations in choosing a House.
Raoul Bott, Master of Dunster House, said yesterday "the spirit in the heart" of his House attracts students.
William H. Bossert '59, Master of Lowell, said, however, that the ups and downs in popularity are the result of attempts to "psyche out" the system, adding that fewer upperclassmen transferred to Lowell this year than in the past.
Although Mather tied for tenth place as a first choice, it was the most popular second and third selection.
One freshman said he included Mather in his three choices because "anything is better than being quadded."
Only 8.5 per cent of freshmen picked a Quad House as their first choice, with 5 per cent choosing South House.
Fourteen per cent of those polled said South House was their third choice, a jump from last year's 1 per cent.
Most freshmen who chose South House third said they felt it would be hard to avoid being randomly selected for a Quad House if they did not receive one of their first two choices.
Dr. Warren E.C. Wacker, Master of South House, said that the rise in popularity is partially due to the new athletic facility open to Quad residents, adding that the House has good spirit because the people assigned in the past two years "were a good cross-section of Harvard."