INDUS VALLEY CIVILIZATION
(2350 BC – 1750 BC)
- Indus Valley Civilization
- Different Sites of Indus Valley Civilization
- Harappa , Mohenjo Daro, Lothal, Kalibangan, Dholavira
- Features of Indus Valley Civilization
- Economy of Indus Valley Civilization
- Agriculture and Animal Husbandry
- Crafts And Trade
- Religions of Indus Valley Civilization
- Scripts of Harappan Civilization
- Decline of Harappan Civilization
Indus Valley Civilization :
- Indus valley civilization is also called ‘Harappan Civilization’ because Harappa was the first site to be excavated in 1921 under the supervision of ‘Daya Ram Sahni’.
- Indus Valley Civilization belongs to Bronze Age/Chalcolithic Age, also called Bronze Age civilization.
- Contemporary civilization of Harappan civilization are Mesopotamian or Sumerian civilization, Egyptian civilization or chinese civilization.
Different Sites of Indus Valley Civilization :
- Six granaries and sixteen ‘agnikunda’ have been found in Harappa.
- People of Harappa knew the process of making tarcol.
- Main gate for the entry in the houses of Harappa was in the NORTH DIRECTION.
- Terracotta figurine Mother Goddess have been found here.
2. Mohenjo Daro :
- The literal meaning of Mohenjo Daro in sindhi language is ‘Mound of the Dead’.
- The Great Bath, a granary, big halls, a bronze statue of dancing girl, idol of a yogi and numerous seals have been found here.
- The evidences of assembly hall and proper planned house with a kitchen and courtyard have been found at Mohenjo Daro.
- Mohenjo daro was discovered in 1922 under the supervision of R. D. Banerjee.
- Seven layers of Mohenjo Daro city directs that the city was destroyed and rebuilt seven times.
3. Lothal :
- A dockyard have been found at lothal.
- Lothal was discovered by S.R. Rao in (1957) jn gulf of cambay in Gujarat.
- Red and black clay pots, copper tools brick built tank liker structure, a bead making factory and a seal from Iran have been found at Lothal.
- Linear scale of bronze have been found here.
4. Kalibangan :
- A number of Agnikunda (Fire Pits) have been found in Kalibangan.
- Kalibangan was discovered in 1953. It is located in upper Rajasthan.
- It saw two cultural Phases viz. pre-Harappan and Harappan.
- A ploughed field have been found.
- Kalibangan was not planned and did not have drainage system.
5. Dholavira :
- Dholavira in Gujarat was discovered in 1992 by J.P. Joshi.
- Dholavira shows all the phases of Harappan/ Indus valley Civilization.
- A Script consisting of big alphabets has been found on a gate in Dholavira.
Important Features of Indus Valley :
- Town planning was most distinguishable feature of harappan civilization. This is also called first urbanisation.
- Harappan cities were developed in Block Pattern.
- Most peculiar feature of town planning was their drainage system.
- Banawali and Kalibangan shows two phases, viz. pre-Harappan and Harappan.
- The Harappans knew the art of measurement.
- Complete burial was the most common method of disposal of dead.
Economy of Harappan Culture :
Agriculture And Animal Husbandry:
- The Indus valley Civilization or Harappan grew wheat and barley on a large scale. The other crops grown were pulses, cereals, cotton, dates, melons, pea, sesame and mustard.
- No clear evidence of rice has been found in Harappan or The Indus Valley Civilization.
- Evidence of Hoe and Plough have been found in Kalibangan and Banawali.
- Harappan domesticated sheep, goat, buffalo and pig. They also knew about tiger, camel, elephant, tortoise, der, various birds etc. however they didn’t know about Lion.
- Humpless bulls or Unicorn was the most important animal.
- The Harappans were the earliest people to produce cotton.
- The Harappan culture belongs to the Bronze Age, as the People were very well acquainted with the manufacture and user of bronze.
- Harappan used to make seals, stone statue, terracotta figurines etc.
- Huge brick structures made up of burnt bricks and mud bricks suggest that laying was an important craft.
- Harappan did not know about Iron.
- They knew about boat making also, as it is evident from their seals.
- Land and sea trade was in Vogue.
- A Dockyard found at Lothal is the longest building of harappan civilization.
- Most important trading partners was Mesopotamia.
- The Mesopotamian inscription refers to trade relation with ‘Meluha’ which was the ancient name given to the Indus region.
- Two intermediate trading stations called dilmun and maker are identified with ‘Bahrain’ and ‘Makran Coast.’
Religion of Indus Valley Civilization:
- Pashupati seals have been found from Mohenjo Daro in which a Yogi figure has been depicted.
- The Yogi on the seal is surrounded by buffalo, tiger, elephant, rhinoceros and dear. Hence Yogi is said to be Proto Shiva.
- Harappan worshipped Mother Goddess. It is evident from the terracotta figurine recovered.
- A building called Great Bath have been found at Mohenjo Daro which was meant for ritual bathing.
- They were superstitious as they wore amulets.
- Harappan worshipped ’Pipal Tree’.
- No evidence of temple have been found in this civilization.
- The earliest evidence for elements of Hinduism are alleged to have been present before and during the early Harappan period
Scripts of harappans :
- Harapan knew the art of writing. There are nearly 4000 specimens of Harappan writing on stone seals and other objects have been found.
- Between 400 and as many as 600 distinct Indus symbols have been found on seals, small tablets, ceramic pots and more than a dozen other materials, including a “signboard” that apparently once hung over the gate of the inner citadel of the Indus city of Dholavira.
- Harappan scripts is not alphabetical but mainly pictographic.
- This scripts has not been deciphered so far.
- Scripts was consisted of about 400 symbols, out of which 75 were original and remaining were their variants.
Decline of harappan Civilization :
- Around 1800 BCE, signs of a gradual decline began to emerge, and by around 1700 BCE, most of the cities were abandoned.
- There are three different view points of the historians on the decline of Harappan Civilization.
- Sir Mortimer Wheeler proposed that the decline of the Indus Civilization was caused by the invasion of an Indo-European tribe from Central Asia called the “Aryans”
- As per G.F Dales & Marshall, Aryans were not responsible for the decline of this civilization.
- James Marshall stated that natural calamities were responsible for the decline of Harappan civilization. This theory was widely accepted.