The map shows the Indus civilization and its earliest historic neighbours. The eastern limits of the Indus civilization in the Ganges plains and beyond are highly uncertain. No traces of permanent settlements have been found there but there are some indications at least of trading as far east as Assam and even Burma.

Note: the arrows do not necessarily indicate population movements.They only show the advance of a "concept and idea of agriculture". How large (or small) the population movements were that accompanied the advance of agriculture is a question that cannot be answered at present.

30,000 – 10,000 BC

PALEOLOTHIC Habitations – rock shelters Located near water sources and where plants are available Stone –tools, hand-sized and flaked-off large pebbles Bhimbhetka – paintings on rocks, reflecting concerns with hunting and fertility. MESOLITHIC -Middle stone age – Use of stone tools. -Tiny stone artefacts called microliths -Change from pebble stones to quartz, chert, (easier to flake as small tools) -Change in living patterns from hunting & gathering to domestication and primitive cultivation -Evidences of circular huts beyond caves and shetlers.

10000 BC

NEOLITHIC Revolution through practice of agriculture Possibilities of storage of food (surplus) resulting in variety of exchanges. Improvement in tools – polished stone axes. Grass huts – wattle & daub – mud brick structures, small granaries and water storage. Mehrgarh, Dholavira Beginnings of practices in alloying of metals – precursor to Harappan settlements.

4000 BC

CHALCOLITHIC Bronze Age Use of copper and bronze – new technologies of crafting metal artifacts.

4000 BC 2600 BC 1900 BC 1750 BC

FIRST URBANIZATION: Cities of indus civilization Early Harappan Mature Harappan Late Harappan

1300 BC 600 BC

Around 1300 BC, after the drying up of Saraswati river, the settlements moved further east and south India. This marks the regionalization period which led to the evolution of various languages and cultures in India. During 600 BC, one of the mightiest dynasties of India, the Magadha Dynasty was established. Under their rule, the world’s first universities, namely Takshila and Nalanda were established, which attracted thousands of students from all over the world to study more than 60 different subjects. These universities became the greatest centres of learning in ancient India. Also, it was during this period, that Buddhism and Jainism evolved in India. Towards the 3rd century BC, India evolved as a single great empire under the Mauryan ruler Chandragupta Maurya. Asoka (another Mauryan ruler) played a significant role in spreading Buddhism. During 50 BC to 1000 AD, art, music and architecture flourished under the rule of dynasties like the Gupta, Pallavas and the Cholas. Hence this is called the Golden Period in Indian history. The Cholas were patrons of art and architecture and they commissioned a lot of temples, paintings and sculptures. Thus we see a lot of temple complexes of this period.

300 BC 50 BC 1000AD 1700 AD

1000-1700 AD was the period of a series of foreign invasions for India bringing in diverse cultures and religions into the mainstream of Indian culture, which was later adopted by the people.

Towards the 17th century, India came under the British rule which lasted for over 300 years.

Indus Valley Civilization 3000 – 2000 BC
Contemporary with Mesopotamia & Ancient Egyptian Civilizations

The least-understood and oldest of Civilizations

The Indus Valley civilization was entirely unknown until 1921, when excavations in what would become Pakistan revealed the cities of Harappa and Mohenjo Daro (shown here)

This mysterious culture emerged nearly 4,500 years ago and thrived for a thousand years, profiting from the highly fertile lands of the Indus River floodplain and trade with the civilizations of nearby Mesopotamia.

Following the Partition of India, the bulk of the archaeological finds were inherited by Pakistan

Origins of the Indus Valley civilization
From the north west, through the valleys of the Hindu Kush and passes of Khyber and Bolan The great river system called the Sindhu: the five tributaries rising in Kashmir, form the fertile Punjab in the north The Ganges-Yamuna, descends from the western Himlayas to water the great plain of the ancient Madhyadesha to the confluence of the Bramhaputra in the delta of the rich Bengal. The Indus valley civilization thrived on the rich alluvium of the Indus and Hakra basins. The inscriptions remain un-interpreted but with their devices, together with their statuettes, suggest worship involving the Mother Goddess, a horned deity, a bull, a phallic element, trees and genii of sacred spots.

‘Architecture is a matrix of civilization’ - Le haby

Sites of the Indus Valley civilization
Mohenjo-Daro Harappa Chanhudaro Balakot Ropar Alamgirpur Kalibangan Banawali Lothal Rangpur Rojdi Prabhaspatan Desalpur Surkotada Dholavira Juni kuran Padri Tarkhanwala dera Baror

An important agricultural and commercial colonization centering around the two important centres Mohenjo-Daro and Harappa

Details of the Mohenjo-daro citadel: 1 College 2 Bath 3 Rooms (guest rooms?) 4 Loading platform and granary 5 Drain 6 Residence for priests (?) 7 Assembly hall 8 Temple complex(?) 9 Bastions (of baked brick) 10 Tower (of baked brick) 11 Mud-brick embankment 12 Stairs X Buddhist stupa (not contemporary with the ancient Mohenjo-daro structures)

Town planning and settlement patterns

straight streets at right angles, rectangular grid showing chess board pattern in plan principal buildings oriented towards the cardinal points each city divided into wards for protective purposes Well-drained courtyard houses A fairly advanced system of drains and canals to take away effluents under well-covered drains, a complex system of water harvesting and reservoirs and a developed water proofing technology: Great Bath, Mohenjo-Daro

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Citadel on artificial mound Great bath Hammam on south east corner Granary with high timber superstructure with intersecting channels below for ventilation Series of cells and baths

Aerial photograph of the "Great Bath" at the centre of the citadel of Harappa (see in the map above). The round stucture to the left of the bath is the well.

"The Great Bath" at Mohenjo-daro.

The Archeological ruins of Moenjodaro located on the right bank of the Indus River, around 400 kilometers north of Karachi, in Pakistan's Sindh Province

The well of the Great Bath.

Sewer drains at Mohenjo-daro.

Town planning and settlement patterns

Fortified citadel, bastions Lower city, middle town Workmen quarters Central depressions for pounding grains Granaries with appropriate ventilation Network of streets Sarai, resting places for travelers Market halls, granaries, baths, Store rooms or offices Palace structures arranged around two spacious courtyards House types: rooms flanked by courtyards

The archaeoelogical excavation of the building that is known as the "Granary" at Harappa.

The well in the citadel of Harappa is the round opening near the centre of the photograph. It was almost certainly this permanent source of fresh water on top of a defensible hill that made the site of Harappa such an important centre of the Indus culture. Partially visible on the left is the North Gateway.

Construction systems and technology

•construction with pronounced batter or slope •burnt brick laid in mud-mortar in the English bond •experienced technique of brick laying crafts •two or more stories in height, upper storey constructed largely of wood, flat roofs ( stout beams covered with planking) finished with beaten earth •openings generally spanned by wooden lintels •Several instances of corbelled arch formed by oversailing courses of brick

Construction systems and technology

A typical small house with 2 to 4 rooms at Merghar would have looked like this and was likely to have housed a family. The larger buildings shown on the map above were constructed on the same principle but, it is thought, were either palaces or used for the storage of goods.

Standardized weights and measures used in the Indus civilization. The strings on the scale are, of course, modern.

Indus Valley civilization was mainly an urban culture sustained by surplus agricultural production and commerce, the latter including trade with Sumer in southern Mesopotamia. Both Mohenjo-daro and Harappa are generally characterized as having "differentiated living quarters, flat-roofed brick houses, and fortified administrative or religious centers. Although such similarities have given rise to arguments for the existence of a standardized system of urban layout and planning, such similarities are largely due to the presence of a semi-orthogonal type of civic layout, and a comparison of the layouts of Mohenjo-daro and Harappa shows that they are in fact, arranged in a quite dissimilar fashion. The weights and measures of the Indus Valley Civilization, on the other hand, were highly standardized, and conform to a set scale of gradations. Distinctive seals were used, among other applications, perhaps for identification of property and shipment of goods. Although copper and bronze were in use, iron was not yet employed. "Cotton was woven and dyed for clothing; wheat, rice, and a variety of vegetables and fruits were cultivated; and a number of animals, including the humped bull, were domesticated. Wheel-made pottery—some of it adorned with animal and geometric motifs—has been found in profusion at all the major Indus sites. A centralized administration for each city, though not the whole civilization, has been inferred from the revealed cultural uniformity; however, it remains uncertain whether authority lay with a commercial oligarchy. There appears to be a complete lack of priestly "pomp or lavish display" that was common in other civilizations.

Vedic period 1500 – 800 BC

Vedic Culture, Indo-Aryan civilizations

Indo-Aryan migration from the north west laid the foundations of the Vedic age, originally nomads Considerable miscellaneous information is contained in the Vedas, the lyrical compositions which have been preserved through three millenniums, while ingenious vignettes depicting the life og the times are carved out in the Stupas at Bharhut and Sanchi

Bamboo and reed huts (predominately round in form), surrounded by a special kind of fence of bamboo posts.

In the Vedic village, the huts were of a beehive pattern made of a circular wall of bamboos held together with bands of withes and covered either with a domical roof of leaves or thatched with grass. This evolved into an oval with a barrel roof formed on a frame of bent bamboos also covered with thatch. Some were arranged in threes and fours around a square courtyard and the roofs covered with planks of wood and tiles.

Unbaked bricks used for the walls and doorways – square openings with double doors

Vedic Culture, Indo-Aryan civilizations

By 1000 BC, the Vedic community expanded as towns at important centres, where the traditional structure of the village was reproduced on a larger scale and in a more substantial form. With greater rivalries, arose capitals of states strongly fortified. Within an enclosure of wooden palisades, were buildings of entirely wooden construction. Cities largely of wood construction were planned by Maha Govinda, according to Dhammapala a Buddhist commentator in 500 BC.

Rectangular in plan, divided into four quarters by two main thoroughfares inersecting at right angles, each leading to a city gate. One of the quarters contained the citadel and royal apartments another resolved itself into residences of the upper classes, a third was for the less pretentious buildings of the middle class and foutrh for the traders with their workshops.

Vedic Culture, Indo-Aryan civilizations

Beginnings of stone masonry construction: City wall of Rajgriha, the ancient capital of Magadha, now a vast area of ruins in the Patna district of Bihar. Undresses stone masonary blocks: 3’ – 5’ length, carefully fitted and bonded together. The core of smaller blocks with fragments of stone packed in the inetrstices, no mortar appears to be used. Masonry upto the height of 10’ – 12’ above which a superstructure of wood and brick and stone and brick combined.

References indus civilization harappa

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