The Indus Valley CivilizationNORTH SOUTH UNIVERSITYDEPARTMENT OF HISTORY AND PHILOSOPHYHIS 102: INTRODUCTION TO WORLD CIVILIZATION
Indus Valley Civilization was a Bronze Age civilization, 3000-1300 BCE; peak 2500-1900 BCE (‘mature’ stage)Location: Mostly around northwestern part of Indian subcontinent, in Pakistan extending from Balochistan in Sindh to the Indian states of Gujarat, Haryana and Punjab, and parts of northern India. Flourishing around the Indus river and in the Punjab region. Later spread towards the Ganga-Yamuna Doab
Discovery and ExcavationThe ruins of Harappa (one of the towns of Indus Civilization) were first discovered by Charles Masson in 1842 and Alexander Cunningham in 1872. However as a civilization, it was first discovered by Rakhal Das Banerjee and John Marshall around 1922. Later discoveries by Mortimer Wheeler, Director of Archaeological Survey of India in 1944.
Important sites of excavations: Thousands of sites have been discovered so far. However only a dozen can be described as cities. These are:Harappa on the bank of river Ravi in the Montgomery district of Western Punjab (Pakistan). Harappan Civilization named after this site.Mohenjodaroin Larkana district on the river Indus. (Largest)Chanhudaroin Sindh.Lothalin Gujarat (India).Kalibanganin northern Rajasthan (India) in the dry bed of river Ghaggar.
Geographical ConditionsThe settlement was attractive since it offered vast expanse of well-watered fertile land for arable agriculture and also for grazing animals.Wild game, fish and plants provided other additional resources.Enough mud and timber for construction, as well as fuel for domestic activities.The Indus basin and its tributaries were well endowed with mineral resources, as well as stone and metal ores.
Archeological Sources•Cities and villages; baked-brick houses•Craft centers, rivers stations, camp sites•Figurines, metal artifacts, beads, seals •Fortified places, ports•Water harnessing; wells and paved bathing floors•Weights, trade in copper •Lacking sources: a deciphered script; grand temples or mortuary structures; great treasures
•Foreign Accounts: Mesopotamian Texts‘Meluhha’, was the source for ivory, wood, gold, lapis lazuli and carnelian (used brown-red semi-precious stones). C. 2300 BCE.Ships of MeluhhaMeluhhites – people of the ‘black mountain’, or ‘black land’. Weights and beads found in Mesopotamia c. 2600 BCE.•Trade– was necessary for Bronze Age civilizations to procure metals.
Layout of the CitiesIn general, layout of the cities were similar.To the west was a citadel(A stronghold into which people could go for shelter during a battle), fortified by walls.
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- Summer '19