NCERT Textbook - In the Earliest Cities Class 6 Notes | EduRev

Social Studies (SST) Class 6

UPSC : NCERT Textbook - In the Earliest Cities Class 6 Notes | EduRev

 Page 1


n 24
OUR PASTS–I
Sa Sa Sa Sa Saving an old building ving an old building ving an old building ving an old building ving an old building
Jaspal and Harpreet were playing cricket in the lane
outside their home when they noticed the people who
were admiring the dilapidated old building that the
children called the haunted house.
“Look at the architecture!” said one of the men.
“Have you seen the fine wood carving?” asked one of the
women.
“We must write to the Minister so that she makes
arrangements to repair and preserve this beautiful house.”
Why, they wondered, would anybody be interested in
the old, run down house?
The stor The stor The stor The stor The story of Har y of Har y of Har y of Har y of Harappa appa appa appa appa
Very often, old buildings have a story to tell. Nearly
a hundred and fifty years ago, when railway lines
were being laid down for the first time in the
Punjab, engineers stumbled upon the site of
Harappa in present-day Pakistan. To them, it
seemed like a mound that was a rich source of
ready made, high quality bricks. So they carried
off thousands of bricks from the walls of the old
buildings of the city to build railway lines. Many
buildings were completely destroyed.
Then, about eighty years ago, archaeologists
found the site, and realised that this was one of
the oldest cities in the subcontinent. As this was
the first city to be discovered, all other sites from
where similar buildings (and other things) were
found were described as Harappan. These cities
developed about 4700 years ago.
Very often, old buildings are pulled down to
make way for new construction. Do you think it
is important to preserve old buildings?
CHAPTER 3
IN THE EARLIEST CITIES IN THE EARLIEST CITIES IN THE EARLIEST CITIES IN THE EARLIEST CITIES IN THE EARLIEST CITIES
2020-21
©  NCERT 
not to be republished
Page 2


n 24
OUR PASTS–I
Sa Sa Sa Sa Saving an old building ving an old building ving an old building ving an old building ving an old building
Jaspal and Harpreet were playing cricket in the lane
outside their home when they noticed the people who
were admiring the dilapidated old building that the
children called the haunted house.
“Look at the architecture!” said one of the men.
“Have you seen the fine wood carving?” asked one of the
women.
“We must write to the Minister so that she makes
arrangements to repair and preserve this beautiful house.”
Why, they wondered, would anybody be interested in
the old, run down house?
The stor The stor The stor The stor The story of Har y of Har y of Har y of Har y of Harappa appa appa appa appa
Very often, old buildings have a story to tell. Nearly
a hundred and fifty years ago, when railway lines
were being laid down for the first time in the
Punjab, engineers stumbled upon the site of
Harappa in present-day Pakistan. To them, it
seemed like a mound that was a rich source of
ready made, high quality bricks. So they carried
off thousands of bricks from the walls of the old
buildings of the city to build railway lines. Many
buildings were completely destroyed.
Then, about eighty years ago, archaeologists
found the site, and realised that this was one of
the oldest cities in the subcontinent. As this was
the first city to be discovered, all other sites from
where similar buildings (and other things) were
found were described as Harappan. These cities
developed about 4700 years ago.
Very often, old buildings are pulled down to
make way for new construction. Do you think it
is important to preserve old buildings?
CHAPTER 3
IN THE EARLIEST CITIES IN THE EARLIEST CITIES IN THE EARLIEST CITIES IN THE EARLIEST CITIES IN THE EARLIEST CITIES
2020-21
©  NCERT 
not to be republished
25 n
What w What w What w What w What was special about these cities? as special about these cities? as special about these cities? as special about these cities? as special about these cities?
Many of these cities were divided into two or more
parts. Usually, the part to the west was smaller
but higher. Archaeologists describe this as the
citadel. Generally, the part to the east was larger
but lower. This is called the lower town. Very often
walls of baked brick were built around each part.
The bricks were so well baked that they have
lasted for thousands of years. The bricks were
laid in an interlocking pattern and that made the
walls strong.
In some cities, special
buildings were constructed
on the citadel. For example,
in Mohenjodaro, a very
special tank, which
archaeologists call the Great
Bath, was built in this area.
This was lined with bricks,
coated with plaster, and
made water-tight with a layer
of natural tar. There were
steps leading down to it from
two sides, while there were
rooms on all sides. Water was
probably brought in from a
well, and drained out after
use. Perhaps important
people took a dip in this tank
on special occasions.
Other cities, such as
Kalibangan and Lothal had
fire altars, where sacrifices
may have been performed.
And some cities like
Mohenjodaro, Harappa, and
Lothal had elaborate store
houses.
These cities were found in
the Punjab and Sind in
Pakistan, and in Gujarat,
Rajasthan, Haryana and
the Punjab in India.
Archaeologists have found
a set of unique objects in
almost all these cities: red
pottery painted with
designs in black, stone
weights, seals, special
beads, copper tools, and
paralleled sided long stone
blades.
MAP : 3
The Earliest Cities
in the Subcontinent
2020-21
©  NCERT 
not to be republished
Page 3


n 24
OUR PASTS–I
Sa Sa Sa Sa Saving an old building ving an old building ving an old building ving an old building ving an old building
Jaspal and Harpreet were playing cricket in the lane
outside their home when they noticed the people who
were admiring the dilapidated old building that the
children called the haunted house.
“Look at the architecture!” said one of the men.
“Have you seen the fine wood carving?” asked one of the
women.
“We must write to the Minister so that she makes
arrangements to repair and preserve this beautiful house.”
Why, they wondered, would anybody be interested in
the old, run down house?
The stor The stor The stor The stor The story of Har y of Har y of Har y of Har y of Harappa appa appa appa appa
Very often, old buildings have a story to tell. Nearly
a hundred and fifty years ago, when railway lines
were being laid down for the first time in the
Punjab, engineers stumbled upon the site of
Harappa in present-day Pakistan. To them, it
seemed like a mound that was a rich source of
ready made, high quality bricks. So they carried
off thousands of bricks from the walls of the old
buildings of the city to build railway lines. Many
buildings were completely destroyed.
Then, about eighty years ago, archaeologists
found the site, and realised that this was one of
the oldest cities in the subcontinent. As this was
the first city to be discovered, all other sites from
where similar buildings (and other things) were
found were described as Harappan. These cities
developed about 4700 years ago.
Very often, old buildings are pulled down to
make way for new construction. Do you think it
is important to preserve old buildings?
CHAPTER 3
IN THE EARLIEST CITIES IN THE EARLIEST CITIES IN THE EARLIEST CITIES IN THE EARLIEST CITIES IN THE EARLIEST CITIES
2020-21
©  NCERT 
not to be republished
25 n
What w What w What w What w What was special about these cities? as special about these cities? as special about these cities? as special about these cities? as special about these cities?
Many of these cities were divided into two or more
parts. Usually, the part to the west was smaller
but higher. Archaeologists describe this as the
citadel. Generally, the part to the east was larger
but lower. This is called the lower town. Very often
walls of baked brick were built around each part.
The bricks were so well baked that they have
lasted for thousands of years. The bricks were
laid in an interlocking pattern and that made the
walls strong.
In some cities, special
buildings were constructed
on the citadel. For example,
in Mohenjodaro, a very
special tank, which
archaeologists call the Great
Bath, was built in this area.
This was lined with bricks,
coated with plaster, and
made water-tight with a layer
of natural tar. There were
steps leading down to it from
two sides, while there were
rooms on all sides. Water was
probably brought in from a
well, and drained out after
use. Perhaps important
people took a dip in this tank
on special occasions.
Other cities, such as
Kalibangan and Lothal had
fire altars, where sacrifices
may have been performed.
And some cities like
Mohenjodaro, Harappa, and
Lothal had elaborate store
houses.
These cities were found in
the Punjab and Sind in
Pakistan, and in Gujarat,
Rajasthan, Haryana and
the Punjab in India.
Archaeologists have found
a set of unique objects in
almost all these cities: red
pottery painted with
designs in black, stone
weights, seals, special
beads, copper tools, and
paralleled sided long stone
blades.
MAP : 3
The Earliest Cities
in the Subcontinent
2020-21
©  NCERT 
not to be republished
n 26
OUR PASTS–I
Houses, dr Houses, dr Houses, dr Houses, dr Houses, drains and str ains and str ains and str ains and str ains and streets eets eets eets eets
Generally, houses were either one or two storeys
high, with rooms built around a courtyard. Most
houses had a separate bathing area, and some
had wells to supply water.
Many of these cities had covered drains. Notice
how carefully these were laid out,
in straight lines. Although you
cannot see it, each drain had a
gentle slope so that water could flow
through it. Very often, drains in
houses were connected to those on
the streets and smaller drains led
into bigger ones. As the drains were
covered, inspection holes were
provided at intervals to clean them.
All three — houses, drains and
streets — were probably planned
and built at the same time.
List at least two differences
between the houses described here
and those that you studied about
in Chapter 2.
The Great Bath
How bricks were
arranged to build walls
in Harappan cities
2020-21
©  NCERT 
not to be republished
Page 4


n 24
OUR PASTS–I
Sa Sa Sa Sa Saving an old building ving an old building ving an old building ving an old building ving an old building
Jaspal and Harpreet were playing cricket in the lane
outside their home when they noticed the people who
were admiring the dilapidated old building that the
children called the haunted house.
“Look at the architecture!” said one of the men.
“Have you seen the fine wood carving?” asked one of the
women.
“We must write to the Minister so that she makes
arrangements to repair and preserve this beautiful house.”
Why, they wondered, would anybody be interested in
the old, run down house?
The stor The stor The stor The stor The story of Har y of Har y of Har y of Har y of Harappa appa appa appa appa
Very often, old buildings have a story to tell. Nearly
a hundred and fifty years ago, when railway lines
were being laid down for the first time in the
Punjab, engineers stumbled upon the site of
Harappa in present-day Pakistan. To them, it
seemed like a mound that was a rich source of
ready made, high quality bricks. So they carried
off thousands of bricks from the walls of the old
buildings of the city to build railway lines. Many
buildings were completely destroyed.
Then, about eighty years ago, archaeologists
found the site, and realised that this was one of
the oldest cities in the subcontinent. As this was
the first city to be discovered, all other sites from
where similar buildings (and other things) were
found were described as Harappan. These cities
developed about 4700 years ago.
Very often, old buildings are pulled down to
make way for new construction. Do you think it
is important to preserve old buildings?
CHAPTER 3
IN THE EARLIEST CITIES IN THE EARLIEST CITIES IN THE EARLIEST CITIES IN THE EARLIEST CITIES IN THE EARLIEST CITIES
2020-21
©  NCERT 
not to be republished
25 n
What w What w What w What w What was special about these cities? as special about these cities? as special about these cities? as special about these cities? as special about these cities?
Many of these cities were divided into two or more
parts. Usually, the part to the west was smaller
but higher. Archaeologists describe this as the
citadel. Generally, the part to the east was larger
but lower. This is called the lower town. Very often
walls of baked brick were built around each part.
The bricks were so well baked that they have
lasted for thousands of years. The bricks were
laid in an interlocking pattern and that made the
walls strong.
In some cities, special
buildings were constructed
on the citadel. For example,
in Mohenjodaro, a very
special tank, which
archaeologists call the Great
Bath, was built in this area.
This was lined with bricks,
coated with plaster, and
made water-tight with a layer
of natural tar. There were
steps leading down to it from
two sides, while there were
rooms on all sides. Water was
probably brought in from a
well, and drained out after
use. Perhaps important
people took a dip in this tank
on special occasions.
Other cities, such as
Kalibangan and Lothal had
fire altars, where sacrifices
may have been performed.
And some cities like
Mohenjodaro, Harappa, and
Lothal had elaborate store
houses.
These cities were found in
the Punjab and Sind in
Pakistan, and in Gujarat,
Rajasthan, Haryana and
the Punjab in India.
Archaeologists have found
a set of unique objects in
almost all these cities: red
pottery painted with
designs in black, stone
weights, seals, special
beads, copper tools, and
paralleled sided long stone
blades.
MAP : 3
The Earliest Cities
in the Subcontinent
2020-21
©  NCERT 
not to be republished
n 26
OUR PASTS–I
Houses, dr Houses, dr Houses, dr Houses, dr Houses, drains and str ains and str ains and str ains and str ains and streets eets eets eets eets
Generally, houses were either one or two storeys
high, with rooms built around a courtyard. Most
houses had a separate bathing area, and some
had wells to supply water.
Many of these cities had covered drains. Notice
how carefully these were laid out,
in straight lines. Although you
cannot see it, each drain had a
gentle slope so that water could flow
through it. Very often, drains in
houses were connected to those on
the streets and smaller drains led
into bigger ones. As the drains were
covered, inspection holes were
provided at intervals to clean them.
All three — houses, drains and
streets — were probably planned
and built at the same time.
List at least two differences
between the houses described here
and those that you studied about
in Chapter 2.
The Great Bath
How bricks were
arranged to build walls
in Harappan cities
2020-21
©  NCERT 
not to be republished
27 n
Life in the city Life in the city Life in the city Life in the city Life in the city
A Harappan city was a very busy place.
There were people who planned the
construction of special buildings in the city.
These were probably the rulers. It is likely
that the rulers sent people to distant lands
to get metal, precious stones, and other
things that they wanted. They may have
kept the most valuable objects, such as
ornaments of gold and silver, or beautiful
beads, for themselves. And there were
scribes, people who knew how to write, who
helped prepare the seals, and perhaps
wrote on other materials that have not
survived.
Besides, there were men and women,
crafts persons, making all kinds of things
— either in their own homes, or in special
workshops. People were travelling to
distant lands or returning with raw
materials and, perhaps, stories. Many
terracotta toys have been found and
children must have played with these.
Make a list of the people who lived in the city.
Were any of these people listed as living in
villages such as Mehrgarh?
IN THE EARLIEST
CITIES
Top : A street in
Mohenjodaro with a
drain.
Above : A well.
Far Left : A Harappan
seal. The signs on the top
of the seal are part of a
script. This is the earliest
form of writing known in
the subcontinent.
Scholars have tried to
read these signs but we
still do not know exactly
what they mean.
Left : Terracotta toys.
2020-21
©  NCERT 
not to be republished
Page 5


n 24
OUR PASTS–I
Sa Sa Sa Sa Saving an old building ving an old building ving an old building ving an old building ving an old building
Jaspal and Harpreet were playing cricket in the lane
outside their home when they noticed the people who
were admiring the dilapidated old building that the
children called the haunted house.
“Look at the architecture!” said one of the men.
“Have you seen the fine wood carving?” asked one of the
women.
“We must write to the Minister so that she makes
arrangements to repair and preserve this beautiful house.”
Why, they wondered, would anybody be interested in
the old, run down house?
The stor The stor The stor The stor The story of Har y of Har y of Har y of Har y of Harappa appa appa appa appa
Very often, old buildings have a story to tell. Nearly
a hundred and fifty years ago, when railway lines
were being laid down for the first time in the
Punjab, engineers stumbled upon the site of
Harappa in present-day Pakistan. To them, it
seemed like a mound that was a rich source of
ready made, high quality bricks. So they carried
off thousands of bricks from the walls of the old
buildings of the city to build railway lines. Many
buildings were completely destroyed.
Then, about eighty years ago, archaeologists
found the site, and realised that this was one of
the oldest cities in the subcontinent. As this was
the first city to be discovered, all other sites from
where similar buildings (and other things) were
found were described as Harappan. These cities
developed about 4700 years ago.
Very often, old buildings are pulled down to
make way for new construction. Do you think it
is important to preserve old buildings?
CHAPTER 3
IN THE EARLIEST CITIES IN THE EARLIEST CITIES IN THE EARLIEST CITIES IN THE EARLIEST CITIES IN THE EARLIEST CITIES
2020-21
©  NCERT 
not to be republished
25 n
What w What w What w What w What was special about these cities? as special about these cities? as special about these cities? as special about these cities? as special about these cities?
Many of these cities were divided into two or more
parts. Usually, the part to the west was smaller
but higher. Archaeologists describe this as the
citadel. Generally, the part to the east was larger
but lower. This is called the lower town. Very often
walls of baked brick were built around each part.
The bricks were so well baked that they have
lasted for thousands of years. The bricks were
laid in an interlocking pattern and that made the
walls strong.
In some cities, special
buildings were constructed
on the citadel. For example,
in Mohenjodaro, a very
special tank, which
archaeologists call the Great
Bath, was built in this area.
This was lined with bricks,
coated with plaster, and
made water-tight with a layer
of natural tar. There were
steps leading down to it from
two sides, while there were
rooms on all sides. Water was
probably brought in from a
well, and drained out after
use. Perhaps important
people took a dip in this tank
on special occasions.
Other cities, such as
Kalibangan and Lothal had
fire altars, where sacrifices
may have been performed.
And some cities like
Mohenjodaro, Harappa, and
Lothal had elaborate store
houses.
These cities were found in
the Punjab and Sind in
Pakistan, and in Gujarat,
Rajasthan, Haryana and
the Punjab in India.
Archaeologists have found
a set of unique objects in
almost all these cities: red
pottery painted with
designs in black, stone
weights, seals, special
beads, copper tools, and
paralleled sided long stone
blades.
MAP : 3
The Earliest Cities
in the Subcontinent
2020-21
©  NCERT 
not to be republished
n 26
OUR PASTS–I
Houses, dr Houses, dr Houses, dr Houses, dr Houses, drains and str ains and str ains and str ains and str ains and streets eets eets eets eets
Generally, houses were either one or two storeys
high, with rooms built around a courtyard. Most
houses had a separate bathing area, and some
had wells to supply water.
Many of these cities had covered drains. Notice
how carefully these were laid out,
in straight lines. Although you
cannot see it, each drain had a
gentle slope so that water could flow
through it. Very often, drains in
houses were connected to those on
the streets and smaller drains led
into bigger ones. As the drains were
covered, inspection holes were
provided at intervals to clean them.
All three — houses, drains and
streets — were probably planned
and built at the same time.
List at least two differences
between the houses described here
and those that you studied about
in Chapter 2.
The Great Bath
How bricks were
arranged to build walls
in Harappan cities
2020-21
©  NCERT 
not to be republished
27 n
Life in the city Life in the city Life in the city Life in the city Life in the city
A Harappan city was a very busy place.
There were people who planned the
construction of special buildings in the city.
These were probably the rulers. It is likely
that the rulers sent people to distant lands
to get metal, precious stones, and other
things that they wanted. They may have
kept the most valuable objects, such as
ornaments of gold and silver, or beautiful
beads, for themselves. And there were
scribes, people who knew how to write, who
helped prepare the seals, and perhaps
wrote on other materials that have not
survived.
Besides, there were men and women,
crafts persons, making all kinds of things
— either in their own homes, or in special
workshops. People were travelling to
distant lands or returning with raw
materials and, perhaps, stories. Many
terracotta toys have been found and
children must have played with these.
Make a list of the people who lived in the city.
Were any of these people listed as living in
villages such as Mehrgarh?
IN THE EARLIEST
CITIES
Top : A street in
Mohenjodaro with a
drain.
Above : A well.
Far Left : A Harappan
seal. The signs on the top
of the seal are part of a
script. This is the earliest
form of writing known in
the subcontinent.
Scholars have tried to
read these signs but we
still do not know exactly
what they mean.
Left : Terracotta toys.
2020-21
©  NCERT 
not to be republished
n 28
OUR PASTS–I
Ne Ne Ne Ne New cr w cr w cr w cr w crafts in the city afts in the city afts in the city afts in the city afts in the city
Let us look at some of the objects that were made
and found in Harappan cities. Most of the things
that have been found by archaeologists are made
of stone, shell and metal, including copper, bronze,
gold and silver. Copper and bronze were used to
make tools, weapons, ornaments and vessels.
Gold and silver were used to make ornaments
and vessels.
Perhaps the most striking finds are those of
beads, weights, and blades.
The Harappans also made seals out of stone.
These are generally rectangular (See illustration
on page 27) and usually have an animal carved
on them.
The Harappans also made pots with beautiful
black designs, such as the one
shown on page 6.
Was metal used in the villages
you learnt about in Chapter 2?
Was stone used to make
weights?
Cotton was probably grown
at Mehrgarh from about 7000
years ago. Actual pieces of
cloth were found attached
to the lid of a silver vase and
some copper objects at
Mohenjodaro. Archaeologists
have also found spindle whorls,
Top : Stone weights.
Notice how carefully and
precisely these weights
are shaped. These were
made of chert, a kind of
stone. These were
probably used to weigh
precious stones or
metals.
Right : Beads.
Many of these were
made out of carnelian, a
beautiful red stone. The
stone was cut, shaped,
polished and finally a
hole was bored through
the centre so that a
string could be passed
through it.
Far right : Stone blades.
Bottom Right :
Embroidered cloth.
A stone statue of an
important man found
from Mohenjodaro
shows him wearing an
embroidered garment.
2020-21
©  NCERT 
not to be republished
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