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 Page 1


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??? ? ? ??? ?????? ???? ?????
???? ??? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
?????
???
The Harappan seal (Fig.1.1) is possibly the most
distinctive artefact of the Harappan or Indus valley
civilisation. Made of a stone called steatite, seals
like this one often contain animal motifs and signs
from a script that remains undeciphered. Yet we
know a great deal about the lives of the people who
lived in the region from what they left behind –
their houses, pots, ornaments, tools and seals – in
other words, from archaeological evidence. Let us
see what we know about the Harappan civilisation,
and how we know about it. We will explore how
archaeological material is interpreted and how
interpretations sometimes change. Of course, there
are some aspects of the civilisation that are as yet
unknown and may even remain so.
? ?????? ???????? ?????
???? ?????? ??????? ????????????? ??? ????? ??????? ???? ????????? ????????
??????????????? ???? ???? ????? ?????????? ???? ?? ?????? ??? ????????
???????????? ??? ??????? ????? ???? ???????? ?????? ????????? ??????? ?? ????????
?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ??? ? ? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ??? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ??
????????? ?????? ???????????? ???????? ???????? ??????? ??????? ????????? ?????
??????? ?????? ????? ???? ????? ?????? ???????? ?????? ???????? ????? ?????
????? ?????? ??? ???? ?????? ??? ????????????? ??????? ???????????
? ?? ? ? ?? ? ?? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ?? ? ? ?? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ?
?????? ?????? ????????? ???? ?????? ????? ?????? ????? ??????? ???????
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?? ????? ???
????? ??? ?? ?????? ????? ???????? ???? ?????? ?????????? ?????? ??????? ?????
?? ?? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ??
????????????? ??? ?????????? ??????? ???? ??????? ????????? ???????? ??
???????????? ??? ????? ?????? ?????????
Fig. 1.1
A Harappan seal
Fig. 1.2
Beads, weights, blades
2022-23
Page 2


?
??? ? ? ??? ?????? ???? ?????
???? ??? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
?????
???
The Harappan seal (Fig.1.1) is possibly the most
distinctive artefact of the Harappan or Indus valley
civilisation. Made of a stone called steatite, seals
like this one often contain animal motifs and signs
from a script that remains undeciphered. Yet we
know a great deal about the lives of the people who
lived in the region from what they left behind –
their houses, pots, ornaments, tools and seals – in
other words, from archaeological evidence. Let us
see what we know about the Harappan civilisation,
and how we know about it. We will explore how
archaeological material is interpreted and how
interpretations sometimes change. Of course, there
are some aspects of the civilisation that are as yet
unknown and may even remain so.
? ?????? ???????? ?????
???? ?????? ??????? ????????????? ??? ????? ??????? ???? ????????? ????????
??????????????? ???? ???? ????? ?????????? ???? ?? ?????? ??? ????????
???????????? ??? ??????? ????? ???? ???????? ?????? ????????? ??????? ?? ????????
?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ??? ? ? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ??? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ??
????????? ?????? ???????????? ???????? ???????? ??????? ??????? ????????? ?????
??????? ?????? ????? ???? ????? ?????? ???????? ?????? ???????? ????? ?????
????? ?????? ??? ???? ?????? ??? ????????????? ??????? ???????????
? ?? ? ? ?? ? ?? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ?? ? ? ?? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ?
?????? ?????? ????????? ???? ?????? ????? ?????? ????? ??????? ???????
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?? ????? ???
????? ??? ?? ?????? ????? ???????? ???? ?????? ?????????? ?????? ??????? ?????
?? ?? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ??
????????????? ??? ?????????? ??????? ???? ??????? ????????? ???????? ??
???????????? ??? ????? ?????? ?????????
Fig. 1.1
A Harappan seal
Fig. 1.2
Beads, weights, blades
2022-23
? ?????? ? ? ? ??? ? ? ? ??? ?????? ?
Map 1
Some important
Mature Harappan sites
Sketch map not to scale
Manda
Harappa
Banawali
Rakhigarhi
Mitathal
Ganweriwala
Kot Diji
Chanhudaro
Amri
Balakot
Mohenjodaro
Sutkagendor
Dholavira
Lothal
Nageshwar
Rangpur
Kalibangan
Jhelum
Chenab
Ravi
Indus
Yamuna
Ganga
Chambal
Sabarmati
Arabian Sea
Mahi
Narmada
Sutlej
? ?? ??????????
There were several archaeological cultures in the
region prior to the Mature Harappan. These cultures
were associated with distinctive pottery, evidence of
agriculture and pastoralism, and some crafts.
Settlements were generally small, and there were
virtually no large buildings. It appears that there
was a break between the Early Harappan and the
Harappan civilisation, evident from large-scale
burning at some sites, as well as the abandonment
of certain settlements.
??? ???????????? ??????????
If you look at Maps 1 and 2 you will notice that the
Mature Harappan culture developed in some of the
areas occupied by the Early Harappan cultures.
These cultures also shared certain common elements
including subsistence strategies. The Harappans ate
a wide range of plant and animal products, including
fish. Archaeologists have been able to reconstruct
dietary practices from finds of charred grains and
seeds. These are studied by archaeo-botanists,  who
are specialists in ancient plant remains. Grains
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
????????? ????????
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
??????? ??? ???????????? ??? ????
???? ?????????? ????? ??????? ????
??? ????????? ?????????? ???? ????
????????
???? ??????? ??
? ????? ?????? ??? ???
??? ?????
?????? ???????? ?? ??
?????
?????? ?? ???
????????? ?????
??????? ???????? ?? ???
???????????? ??
???? ?????
?????? ???????? ?? ??
????? ? ?????????
You will find certain
abbreviations, related to
dates, in this book.
BP stands for Before
Present
BCE stands for Before
Common Era
CE stands for the Common
Era. The present year is
2015 according to this
dating system.
c. stands for the Latin
word circa and means
“approximate.”
2022-23
Page 3


?
??? ? ? ??? ?????? ???? ?????
???? ??? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
?????
???
The Harappan seal (Fig.1.1) is possibly the most
distinctive artefact of the Harappan or Indus valley
civilisation. Made of a stone called steatite, seals
like this one often contain animal motifs and signs
from a script that remains undeciphered. Yet we
know a great deal about the lives of the people who
lived in the region from what they left behind –
their houses, pots, ornaments, tools and seals – in
other words, from archaeological evidence. Let us
see what we know about the Harappan civilisation,
and how we know about it. We will explore how
archaeological material is interpreted and how
interpretations sometimes change. Of course, there
are some aspects of the civilisation that are as yet
unknown and may even remain so.
? ?????? ???????? ?????
???? ?????? ??????? ????????????? ??? ????? ??????? ???? ????????? ????????
??????????????? ???? ???? ????? ?????????? ???? ?? ?????? ??? ????????
???????????? ??? ??????? ????? ???? ???????? ?????? ????????? ??????? ?? ????????
?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ??? ? ? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ??? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ??
????????? ?????? ???????????? ???????? ???????? ??????? ??????? ????????? ?????
??????? ?????? ????? ???? ????? ?????? ???????? ?????? ???????? ????? ?????
????? ?????? ??? ???? ?????? ??? ????????????? ??????? ???????????
? ?? ? ? ?? ? ?? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ?? ? ? ?? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ?
?????? ?????? ????????? ???? ?????? ????? ?????? ????? ??????? ???????
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?? ????? ???
????? ??? ?? ?????? ????? ???????? ???? ?????? ?????????? ?????? ??????? ?????
?? ?? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ??
????????????? ??? ?????????? ??????? ???? ??????? ????????? ???????? ??
???????????? ??? ????? ?????? ?????????
Fig. 1.1
A Harappan seal
Fig. 1.2
Beads, weights, blades
2022-23
? ?????? ? ? ? ??? ? ? ? ??? ?????? ?
Map 1
Some important
Mature Harappan sites
Sketch map not to scale
Manda
Harappa
Banawali
Rakhigarhi
Mitathal
Ganweriwala
Kot Diji
Chanhudaro
Amri
Balakot
Mohenjodaro
Sutkagendor
Dholavira
Lothal
Nageshwar
Rangpur
Kalibangan
Jhelum
Chenab
Ravi
Indus
Yamuna
Ganga
Chambal
Sabarmati
Arabian Sea
Mahi
Narmada
Sutlej
? ?? ??????????
There were several archaeological cultures in the
region prior to the Mature Harappan. These cultures
were associated with distinctive pottery, evidence of
agriculture and pastoralism, and some crafts.
Settlements were generally small, and there were
virtually no large buildings. It appears that there
was a break between the Early Harappan and the
Harappan civilisation, evident from large-scale
burning at some sites, as well as the abandonment
of certain settlements.
??? ???????????? ??????????
If you look at Maps 1 and 2 you will notice that the
Mature Harappan culture developed in some of the
areas occupied by the Early Harappan cultures.
These cultures also shared certain common elements
including subsistence strategies. The Harappans ate
a wide range of plant and animal products, including
fish. Archaeologists have been able to reconstruct
dietary practices from finds of charred grains and
seeds. These are studied by archaeo-botanists,  who
are specialists in ancient plant remains. Grains
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
????????? ????????
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
??????? ??? ???????????? ??? ????
???? ?????????? ????? ??????? ????
??? ????????? ?????????? ???? ????
????????
???? ??????? ??
? ????? ?????? ??? ???
??? ?????
?????? ???????? ?? ??
?????
?????? ?? ???
????????? ?????
??????? ???????? ?? ???
???????????? ??
???? ?????
?????? ???????? ?? ??
????? ? ?????????
You will find certain
abbreviations, related to
dates, in this book.
BP stands for Before
Present
BCE stands for Before
Common Era
CE stands for the Common
Era. The present year is
2015 according to this
dating system.
c. stands for the Latin
word circa and means
“approximate.”
2022-23
?
found at Harappan sites include
wheat, barley, lentil, chickpea
and sesame. Millets are found
from sites in Gujarat. Finds of
rice are relatively rare.
Animal bones found at Harappan
sites include those of cattle, sheep,
goat, buffalo and pig. Studies
done by archaeo-zoologists or zoo-
archaeologists indicate that these
animals were domesticated.
Bones of wild species such as
boar, deer and gharial are
also found. We do not know
whether the Harappans hunted
these animals themselves or
obtained meat from other hunting
communities. Bones of fish and
fowl are also found.
2.1 Agricultural technologies
While the prevalence of
agriculture is indicated by finds
of grain, it is more difficult to
reconstruct actual agricultural practices. Were
seeds broadcast (scattered) on ploughed lands?
Representations on seals and terracotta sculpture
indicate that the bull was known, and
archaeologists extrapolate from this that oxen
were used for ploughing. Moreover, terracotta
models of the plough have been found at sites in
Cholistan and at Banawali (Haryana).
Archaeologists have also found evidence of a
ploughed field at Kalibangan (Rajasthan),
associated with Early Harappan levels (see p. 20).
The field had two sets of furrows at right angles to
each other, suggesting that two different crops
were grown together.
Archaeologists have also tried to identify the
tools used for harvesting. Did the Harappans use
stone blades set in wooden handles or did they use
metal tools?
Most Harappan sites are located in semi-arid
lands, where irrigation was probably required for
agriculture. Traces of canals have been found at
the Harappan site of Shortughai in Afghanistan, but
not in Punjab or Sind. It is possible that ancient
? Discuss...
Are there any similarities or
differences in the distribution
of settlements shown on Maps
1 and 2?
Fig. 1.3
A terracotta bull
????????? ???? ? ????? ????
Map 2
Areas of Early Harappan
occupation
Sketch map not to scale
AMRI-NAL
Arabian Sea
DAMB
SADAAT
Indus
KOT
DIJI
SISWAL
2022-23
Page 4


?
??? ? ? ??? ?????? ???? ?????
???? ??? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
?????
???
The Harappan seal (Fig.1.1) is possibly the most
distinctive artefact of the Harappan or Indus valley
civilisation. Made of a stone called steatite, seals
like this one often contain animal motifs and signs
from a script that remains undeciphered. Yet we
know a great deal about the lives of the people who
lived in the region from what they left behind –
their houses, pots, ornaments, tools and seals – in
other words, from archaeological evidence. Let us
see what we know about the Harappan civilisation,
and how we know about it. We will explore how
archaeological material is interpreted and how
interpretations sometimes change. Of course, there
are some aspects of the civilisation that are as yet
unknown and may even remain so.
? ?????? ???????? ?????
???? ?????? ??????? ????????????? ??? ????? ??????? ???? ????????? ????????
??????????????? ???? ???? ????? ?????????? ???? ?? ?????? ??? ????????
???????????? ??? ??????? ????? ???? ???????? ?????? ????????? ??????? ?? ????????
?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ??? ? ? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ??? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ??
????????? ?????? ???????????? ???????? ???????? ??????? ??????? ????????? ?????
??????? ?????? ????? ???? ????? ?????? ???????? ?????? ???????? ????? ?????
????? ?????? ??? ???? ?????? ??? ????????????? ??????? ???????????
? ?? ? ? ?? ? ?? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ?? ? ? ?? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ?
?????? ?????? ????????? ???? ?????? ????? ?????? ????? ??????? ???????
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?? ????? ???
????? ??? ?? ?????? ????? ???????? ???? ?????? ?????????? ?????? ??????? ?????
?? ?? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ??
????????????? ??? ?????????? ??????? ???? ??????? ????????? ???????? ??
???????????? ??? ????? ?????? ?????????
Fig. 1.1
A Harappan seal
Fig. 1.2
Beads, weights, blades
2022-23
? ?????? ? ? ? ??? ? ? ? ??? ?????? ?
Map 1
Some important
Mature Harappan sites
Sketch map not to scale
Manda
Harappa
Banawali
Rakhigarhi
Mitathal
Ganweriwala
Kot Diji
Chanhudaro
Amri
Balakot
Mohenjodaro
Sutkagendor
Dholavira
Lothal
Nageshwar
Rangpur
Kalibangan
Jhelum
Chenab
Ravi
Indus
Yamuna
Ganga
Chambal
Sabarmati
Arabian Sea
Mahi
Narmada
Sutlej
? ?? ??????????
There were several archaeological cultures in the
region prior to the Mature Harappan. These cultures
were associated with distinctive pottery, evidence of
agriculture and pastoralism, and some crafts.
Settlements were generally small, and there were
virtually no large buildings. It appears that there
was a break between the Early Harappan and the
Harappan civilisation, evident from large-scale
burning at some sites, as well as the abandonment
of certain settlements.
??? ???????????? ??????????
If you look at Maps 1 and 2 you will notice that the
Mature Harappan culture developed in some of the
areas occupied by the Early Harappan cultures.
These cultures also shared certain common elements
including subsistence strategies. The Harappans ate
a wide range of plant and animal products, including
fish. Archaeologists have been able to reconstruct
dietary practices from finds of charred grains and
seeds. These are studied by archaeo-botanists,  who
are specialists in ancient plant remains. Grains
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
????????? ????????
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
??????? ??? ???????????? ??? ????
???? ?????????? ????? ??????? ????
??? ????????? ?????????? ???? ????
????????
???? ??????? ??
? ????? ?????? ??? ???
??? ?????
?????? ???????? ?? ??
?????
?????? ?? ???
????????? ?????
??????? ???????? ?? ???
???????????? ??
???? ?????
?????? ???????? ?? ??
????? ? ?????????
You will find certain
abbreviations, related to
dates, in this book.
BP stands for Before
Present
BCE stands for Before
Common Era
CE stands for the Common
Era. The present year is
2015 according to this
dating system.
c. stands for the Latin
word circa and means
“approximate.”
2022-23
?
found at Harappan sites include
wheat, barley, lentil, chickpea
and sesame. Millets are found
from sites in Gujarat. Finds of
rice are relatively rare.
Animal bones found at Harappan
sites include those of cattle, sheep,
goat, buffalo and pig. Studies
done by archaeo-zoologists or zoo-
archaeologists indicate that these
animals were domesticated.
Bones of wild species such as
boar, deer and gharial are
also found. We do not know
whether the Harappans hunted
these animals themselves or
obtained meat from other hunting
communities. Bones of fish and
fowl are also found.
2.1 Agricultural technologies
While the prevalence of
agriculture is indicated by finds
of grain, it is more difficult to
reconstruct actual agricultural practices. Were
seeds broadcast (scattered) on ploughed lands?
Representations on seals and terracotta sculpture
indicate that the bull was known, and
archaeologists extrapolate from this that oxen
were used for ploughing. Moreover, terracotta
models of the plough have been found at sites in
Cholistan and at Banawali (Haryana).
Archaeologists have also found evidence of a
ploughed field at Kalibangan (Rajasthan),
associated with Early Harappan levels (see p. 20).
The field had two sets of furrows at right angles to
each other, suggesting that two different crops
were grown together.
Archaeologists have also tried to identify the
tools used for harvesting. Did the Harappans use
stone blades set in wooden handles or did they use
metal tools?
Most Harappan sites are located in semi-arid
lands, where irrigation was probably required for
agriculture. Traces of canals have been found at
the Harappan site of Shortughai in Afghanistan, but
not in Punjab or Sind. It is possible that ancient
? Discuss...
Are there any similarities or
differences in the distribution
of settlements shown on Maps
1 and 2?
Fig. 1.3
A terracotta bull
????????? ???? ? ????? ????
Map 2
Areas of Early Harappan
occupation
Sketch map not to scale
AMRI-NAL
Arabian Sea
DAMB
SADAAT
Indus
KOT
DIJI
SISWAL
2022-23
? ?????? ? ? ? ??? ? ? ? ??? ?????? ?
? ? Do you think these
tools could have been used
for harvesting?
Fig. 1.5
Reservoir at Dholavira
Note the masonry work.
? ? Archaeologists use present-day analogies to try
and understand what ancient artefacts were used
for. Mackay was comparing present-day querns
with what he found. Is this a useful strategy?
? Discuss...
What is the evidence used by
archaeologists to reconstruct
dietary practices?
Fig. 1.4
Copper tools
Fig. 1.6
Saddle quern
Source 1
canals silted up long ago. It is also likely that water
drawn from wells was used for irrigation. Besides,
water reservoirs found in Dholavira (Gujarat) may
have been used to store water for agriculture.
???? ?????????? ???? ??????????
??????????? ??? ????? ????????? ????????? ?????????? ??? ????? ??? ???????
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ?? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
???? ???????????? ????? ??? ??? ???????? ????? ???? ??? ???? ????????? ???????? ??
???????????? ??? ????????????? ???? ??????????? ????????? ?????
??????? ??????? ?? ???? ?????? ??? ????????????? ???????
?? ???? ????? ????? ? ?? ????? ????? ???? ????? ?????? ??? ???
???? ????????? ????????? ??? ?? ?????? ????? ????? ???????? ????
??? ??? ??? ?????? ?? ???????? ? ???? ??? ?????????? ???? ??????
? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ? ?? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ?? ?
???????? ????? ????? ????? ????? ???? ??? ???? ?????? ??? ??
???? ??? ?? ??? ??? ?????? ? ? ?? ? ? ?? ? ? ??? ????? ?????? ????
????? ??????? ?????? ??? ?????? ???????? ???????? ?????? ???
??????? ??? ??????? ??? ???? ????? ???? ??????? ????? ?????? ?
??????? ?????? ???? ????? ??? ?? ????????? ??????????
??????? ?? ?????? ??????? ??? ???? ??????? ??????? ??????? ??
?? ?? ? ??? ?? ? ?? ??? ??? ?? ? ??? ??? ?? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ??? ? ?? ? ?? ??? ?
???? ??????? ????? ????????? ????? ???? ????????? ?????? ???
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
? ? ?? ? ? ?? ? ?? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ? ?? ? ?? ? ?? ? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ?
???? ????? ?????? ???? ???? ????? ??? ???? ????? ???? ??????
???? ???? ??? ???? ????????
? ???? ? ?? ?? ?? ? ???? ? ?? ? ??????? ?? ?????????? ??
? ?? ? ? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ?????
2022-23
Page 5


?
??? ? ? ??? ?????? ???? ?????
???? ??? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
?????
???
The Harappan seal (Fig.1.1) is possibly the most
distinctive artefact of the Harappan or Indus valley
civilisation. Made of a stone called steatite, seals
like this one often contain animal motifs and signs
from a script that remains undeciphered. Yet we
know a great deal about the lives of the people who
lived in the region from what they left behind –
their houses, pots, ornaments, tools and seals – in
other words, from archaeological evidence. Let us
see what we know about the Harappan civilisation,
and how we know about it. We will explore how
archaeological material is interpreted and how
interpretations sometimes change. Of course, there
are some aspects of the civilisation that are as yet
unknown and may even remain so.
? ?????? ???????? ?????
???? ?????? ??????? ????????????? ??? ????? ??????? ???? ????????? ????????
??????????????? ???? ???? ????? ?????????? ???? ?? ?????? ??? ????????
???????????? ??? ??????? ????? ???? ???????? ?????? ????????? ??????? ?? ????????
?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ??? ? ? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ??? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ??
????????? ?????? ???????????? ???????? ???????? ??????? ??????? ????????? ?????
??????? ?????? ????? ???? ????? ?????? ???????? ?????? ???????? ????? ?????
????? ?????? ??? ???? ?????? ??? ????????????? ??????? ???????????
? ?? ? ? ?? ? ?? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ?? ? ? ?? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ?
?????? ?????? ????????? ???? ?????? ????? ?????? ????? ??????? ???????
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?? ????? ???
????? ??? ?? ?????? ????? ???????? ???? ?????? ?????????? ?????? ??????? ?????
?? ?? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ??
????????????? ??? ?????????? ??????? ???? ??????? ????????? ???????? ??
???????????? ??? ????? ?????? ?????????
Fig. 1.1
A Harappan seal
Fig. 1.2
Beads, weights, blades
2022-23
? ?????? ? ? ? ??? ? ? ? ??? ?????? ?
Map 1
Some important
Mature Harappan sites
Sketch map not to scale
Manda
Harappa
Banawali
Rakhigarhi
Mitathal
Ganweriwala
Kot Diji
Chanhudaro
Amri
Balakot
Mohenjodaro
Sutkagendor
Dholavira
Lothal
Nageshwar
Rangpur
Kalibangan
Jhelum
Chenab
Ravi
Indus
Yamuna
Ganga
Chambal
Sabarmati
Arabian Sea
Mahi
Narmada
Sutlej
? ?? ??????????
There were several archaeological cultures in the
region prior to the Mature Harappan. These cultures
were associated with distinctive pottery, evidence of
agriculture and pastoralism, and some crafts.
Settlements were generally small, and there were
virtually no large buildings. It appears that there
was a break between the Early Harappan and the
Harappan civilisation, evident from large-scale
burning at some sites, as well as the abandonment
of certain settlements.
??? ???????????? ??????????
If you look at Maps 1 and 2 you will notice that the
Mature Harappan culture developed in some of the
areas occupied by the Early Harappan cultures.
These cultures also shared certain common elements
including subsistence strategies. The Harappans ate
a wide range of plant and animal products, including
fish. Archaeologists have been able to reconstruct
dietary practices from finds of charred grains and
seeds. These are studied by archaeo-botanists,  who
are specialists in ancient plant remains. Grains
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
????????? ????????
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
??????? ??? ???????????? ??? ????
???? ?????????? ????? ??????? ????
??? ????????? ?????????? ???? ????
????????
???? ??????? ??
? ????? ?????? ??? ???
??? ?????
?????? ???????? ?? ??
?????
?????? ?? ???
????????? ?????
??????? ???????? ?? ???
???????????? ??
???? ?????
?????? ???????? ?? ??
????? ? ?????????
You will find certain
abbreviations, related to
dates, in this book.
BP stands for Before
Present
BCE stands for Before
Common Era
CE stands for the Common
Era. The present year is
2015 according to this
dating system.
c. stands for the Latin
word circa and means
“approximate.”
2022-23
?
found at Harappan sites include
wheat, barley, lentil, chickpea
and sesame. Millets are found
from sites in Gujarat. Finds of
rice are relatively rare.
Animal bones found at Harappan
sites include those of cattle, sheep,
goat, buffalo and pig. Studies
done by archaeo-zoologists or zoo-
archaeologists indicate that these
animals were domesticated.
Bones of wild species such as
boar, deer and gharial are
also found. We do not know
whether the Harappans hunted
these animals themselves or
obtained meat from other hunting
communities. Bones of fish and
fowl are also found.
2.1 Agricultural technologies
While the prevalence of
agriculture is indicated by finds
of grain, it is more difficult to
reconstruct actual agricultural practices. Were
seeds broadcast (scattered) on ploughed lands?
Representations on seals and terracotta sculpture
indicate that the bull was known, and
archaeologists extrapolate from this that oxen
were used for ploughing. Moreover, terracotta
models of the plough have been found at sites in
Cholistan and at Banawali (Haryana).
Archaeologists have also found evidence of a
ploughed field at Kalibangan (Rajasthan),
associated with Early Harappan levels (see p. 20).
The field had two sets of furrows at right angles to
each other, suggesting that two different crops
were grown together.
Archaeologists have also tried to identify the
tools used for harvesting. Did the Harappans use
stone blades set in wooden handles or did they use
metal tools?
Most Harappan sites are located in semi-arid
lands, where irrigation was probably required for
agriculture. Traces of canals have been found at
the Harappan site of Shortughai in Afghanistan, but
not in Punjab or Sind. It is possible that ancient
? Discuss...
Are there any similarities or
differences in the distribution
of settlements shown on Maps
1 and 2?
Fig. 1.3
A terracotta bull
????????? ???? ? ????? ????
Map 2
Areas of Early Harappan
occupation
Sketch map not to scale
AMRI-NAL
Arabian Sea
DAMB
SADAAT
Indus
KOT
DIJI
SISWAL
2022-23
? ?????? ? ? ? ??? ? ? ? ??? ?????? ?
? ? Do you think these
tools could have been used
for harvesting?
Fig. 1.5
Reservoir at Dholavira
Note the masonry work.
? ? Archaeologists use present-day analogies to try
and understand what ancient artefacts were used
for. Mackay was comparing present-day querns
with what he found. Is this a useful strategy?
? Discuss...
What is the evidence used by
archaeologists to reconstruct
dietary practices?
Fig. 1.4
Copper tools
Fig. 1.6
Saddle quern
Source 1
canals silted up long ago. It is also likely that water
drawn from wells was used for irrigation. Besides,
water reservoirs found in Dholavira (Gujarat) may
have been used to store water for agriculture.
???? ?????????? ???? ??????????
??????????? ??? ????? ????????? ????????? ?????????? ??? ????? ??? ???????
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ?? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
???? ???????????? ????? ??? ??? ???????? ????? ???? ??? ???? ????????? ???????? ??
???????????? ??? ????????????? ???? ??????????? ????????? ?????
??????? ??????? ?? ???? ?????? ??? ????????????? ???????
?? ???? ????? ????? ? ?? ????? ????? ???? ????? ?????? ??? ???
???? ????????? ????????? ??? ?? ?????? ????? ????? ???????? ????
??? ??? ??? ?????? ?? ???????? ? ???? ??? ?????????? ???? ??????
? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ? ?? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ? ? ?? ? ?? ?? ?? ?
???????? ????? ????? ????? ????? ???? ??? ???? ?????? ??? ??
???? ??? ?? ??? ??? ?????? ? ? ?? ? ? ?? ? ? ??? ????? ?????? ????
????? ??????? ?????? ??? ?????? ???????? ???????? ?????? ???
??????? ??? ??????? ??? ???? ????? ???? ??????? ????? ?????? ?
??????? ?????? ???? ????? ??? ?? ????????? ??????????
??????? ?? ?????? ??????? ??? ???? ??????? ??????? ??????? ??
?? ?? ? ??? ?? ? ?? ??? ??? ?? ? ??? ??? ?? ? ?? ?? ?? ?? ??? ? ?? ? ?? ??? ?
???? ??????? ????? ????????? ????? ???? ????????? ?????? ???
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
? ? ?? ? ? ?? ? ?? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ? ?? ? ?? ? ?? ? ? ? ? ?? ? ? ?
???? ????? ?????? ???? ???? ????? ??? ???? ????? ???? ??????
???? ???? ??? ???? ????????
? ???? ? ?? ?? ?? ? ???? ? ?? ? ??????? ?? ?????????? ??
? ?? ? ? ?? ? ? ?? ?? ?????
2022-23
?
? ? How is the Lower Town
different from the Citadel?
??? ???????????
?? ???????? ?????? ??????
Perhaps the most unique feature of the Harappan
civilisation was the development of urban centres.
Let us look at one such centre, Mohenjodaro,
more closely. Although Mohenjodaro is the most
well-known site, the first site to be discovered
was Harappa.
The settlement is divided into two sections, one
smaller but higher and the other much larger but
Fig. 1.7
Layout of Mohenjodaro
????????? ???? ? ????? ????
metres
2022-23
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