Indus Valley Civilization in Ancient India was the first urban civilization in South Asia.Indus Valley Civilization reflects the foundation structure of modern India. Let’s learn.
The Indus Valley Civilization can be classified in three phases
- The Early Phase (3200-2600 BCE)
- Mature phase (2600-1900 BCE)
- Late phase (1900-1300 BCE)
- Indus civilization belongs to Proto-Historic period/Chalcolithic age
- IVC belongs to the Bronze Age
- First discovered site in the Indus Civilization is Harappa. This is why this civilization is also known as Harappan Civilization.
- John Marshall was the first person to use the word ‘Indus civilization‘
Brief Info on various Indus Sites
|Site||Location||River||Year of Excavation||Archaeologist|
|Alamgirpur||Meerut, Uttar Pradesh,India||Hindon||1974||Y.D. Sharma|
|Banawali||Hisar, Haryana,India||Ghaggar||1974||R.S. Bisht|
|Chanhudaro||Sindh, Pakistan||Indus||1931||M.G. Majumdar|
|Dholavira||Gujarat,India||Rann of Kutch||1985-90||M.S. Vats,B.B. Lal|
|Harappa||Montgomery, Pakistan||Ravi||1921||Daya Ram Sahni|
|Kalibangan||Hanumangarh, Rajasthan,India||Ghaggar||1953||B.B. Lal|
|Kot Diji||Khairpur, Sindh, Pakistan||Indus||1953||Fazal Ahmed|
|Lothal||Ahmedabad, Gujarat,India||Bhogava||1957||S.R. Rao|
|Mohenjo daro||Larkana, Sindh, Pakistan||Indus||1922||R.D. Banerjee|
|Rangpur||Ahmedabad, Gujarat,India||Bhadar||1931||R.S. Bisht|
|Ropar||Rupnagar, Punjab, India||Sutlej||1953||Y.D. Sharma|
|Surkotada||Gujarat ,India||Rann of Kutch||1964||J.P Joshi|
|Sutkagen||Dor Makran, Balochistan, Pakistan||Dasht||1927||R.L. Stein|
|Daimabad||Maharashtra, India||Pravara||1958||B. P. Bopardikar|
- Urban society comprising mostly of the middle class families.
- Indus valley houses were were 2-3 stories high and were built with mud bricks with proper sewage systems.
- Town planning and drainage system of Indus Civilization was excellent. The well laid out roads inside the town were the main features of Indus Civilization.
- Courtyard houses in Indus/Harappan Civilization was the earliest foundation structure of modern houses.These were open to the sky and knows as ‘Brahmasthals’ or the soul of a house.The Courtyards were primarily used for activities like sacred rituals.
- People were expert in red black pottery.
- Copper,Bronze,Silver,Gold were known to people of Indus Civilization.
- They were also good at metallurgy and producing alloys.
- The Indus people used clothes made of cotton/wool and sandals made of cloth.
- They relished non-vegetarian food.Fish-eating was common. Milk and curd was also consumed.
- Sindh and Punjab area of Indus civilization largely consumed wheat and barley while people in Rangpur and Surkotda consumed rice and millets.
- The IVC script was pictographic and logosyllabic (each symbol stood for a word/syllable).
- The inferences about economical structure of Indus Civilization have been derived from its flourishing trade relations with its contemporary Mesopotamian,Egypt and Sumerian civilizations.
- Engaged in foreign trade with Mesopotamia, Sumer & Bahrain.
- Seals hold a special significance in the Harappan Civilization. Every merchant probably had a seal bearing an emblem, often of a religious character on one side.
- The standard Indus seal was a square/ oblong plaque made of steatite stone.
- They carried out internal and external trade.
- There was no metallic money was in circulation and trade was conducted by means of barter.
- Inland transport primarily employed bullock carts.
- Bead-making factories were found at Chanhudaro and Lothal.
- A dockyard has been exacavated in Lothal and sea ports have been found at Rangpur, Somnath and Balakot.
- Religious belief is considered as a secular.
- No temple structure has been found.
- People used to worship Mother goddess,Pashupati Mahadeva or proto-Shiva,Lingam,Pipal tree,Humped Bull,Birds (dove and pigeon),One-horned unicorn,stones.
- They believed in ghosts, evil forces and superstitions.
- Coffins containing dead bodies were found at Harappa.
- Evidence of animal sacrifice was found.
- IVC was the earliest known civilization to produce cotton.
- Wheat, Millets and Barley were most common agricultural products.
- Rice cultivation was observed at Lothal and Rangpur.
- People domesticated animals like cats, dogs, oxen, buffaloes, goats, humped bulls, sheep, pigs, asses, camels on a large scale.
- The presence of rabbits, peacocks, ducks, pigeons, wild fowl and monkeys were found on pottery paintings.
- Remains of horses was found at Surkotda.
- Dogs with men in grave was found in Ropar.
There is no archaeological evidence of the reason behind the fall of Indus Civilization. Some possible theories are:
|Wheeler, Piggot and Gordan Childe||External Aggression or Aryan Invasion|
|Marshall and Raikes||Tectonic Disturbance|
|RL Stein and AN Ghosh||Climatic Change|
|Marshal, SR Rao, Mackey||Flood|
|HT Lambrick, Walter Fairservis, Sood and Aggarwal||Unstable river system, Ecological imbalance,Dryness of river|
- Copper Chariot was found-Daimabad
- A Stone cut water reservoir was found-Dholovira
- Assembly hall and collegiate building were found-Mahenjodaro
- Sandstone dancer was found–Rangpur
- Granary outside to citadel was found–Mahenjodoro
- Teracotta Replica of a plough was found-Banawali
- Dancing girl sculpture was found-Mahenjodaro
- ‘The Great Bath’ made of burnt bricks is located at-Mahenjodaro
- Two rows of six granaries was found-Harappa
- A dockyard and a teracotta model of a ship was found-Lothal
- Unique water harvesting system was found-Dholavira