Both are used. When the screen size is less, always icons are prefered. But in that case, if the user is blind, then icons should have an alternative text tagged to the icons only then the screen reader would read the icon as home. Without alternative text, Home icon would be either ignored or read as image by the screen reader. So always prefered is text that will support normal user as well as differently abled.
Few more examples of Metaphors used widely are:
Wastebin for Delete Function, Floppy Disk for Save Function
- This reply was modified 5 months, 2 weeks ago by SP.