Indus River Civilizations

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Information about Indus River Civilizations

Published on July 9, 2008

Author: PaulVMcDowell

Source: slideshare.net

Description

Describe Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro

Indus River Civilizations A Peaceable Kingdom?

Introduction to the Region Indus River is located in today’s Pakistan River rises in snow-capped Himalayas Descends through Kashmir Flows through Pakistani plains Spring runoff Floods the plains Leave silt, a soil soft enough to turn without aid of plows

Indus River is located in today’s Pakistan

River rises in snow-capped Himalayas

Descends through Kashmir

Flows through Pakistani plains

Spring runoff

Floods the plains

Leave silt, a soil soft enough to turn without aid of plows

Neolithic Along the Indus Mehrgarh Villages formed around 6000 BC Primary domesticates Western Asiatic wheat Animals native to the area Zebu cattle (humped back) Goats Water buffalo Trade routes in evidence even then Linked Mesopotamia with Indus region Became main routes with Harappan civilizations

Mehrgarh

Villages formed around 6000 BC

Primary domesticates

Western Asiatic wheat

Animals native to the area

Zebu cattle (humped back)

Goats

Water buffalo

Trade routes in evidence even then

Linked Mesopotamia with Indus region

Became main routes with Harappan civilizations

Early Villages: 3200-2600 BC Small villages with a few acres of land Society: egalitarian Enjoyed fertile, well-watered soils Lacked metal ores Trade soon developed Baluchi Highlands: metals, semiprecious stones, timber Symbiosis developed between Baluchistan and lowlanders (trade and also transhumance) May have led to development of complex societies along Indus

Small villages with a few acres of land

Society: egalitarian

Enjoyed fertile, well-watered soils

Lacked metal ores

Trade soon developed

Baluchi Highlands: metals, semiprecious stones, timber

Symbiosis developed between Baluchistan and lowlanders (trade and also transhumance)

May have led to development of complex societies along Indus

Harappan Civilization (2700-1700 BC) Trade with Sumeria may have contributed to Harappan growth Sumeria expanded trade with Meluhha, probably in the Indus region Through Dilmun, on island of Bahrain at the Persian Gulf Items obtained from Meluhha: ivory, wool, cloth, leather, oils, cedar, and cereals Others claim that Harappan civilization developed independently

Trade with Sumeria may have contributed to Harappan growth

Sumeria expanded trade with Meluhha, probably in the Indus region

Through Dilmun, on island of Bahrain at the Persian Gulf

Items obtained from Meluhha: ivory, wool, cloth, leather, oils, cedar, and cereals

Others claim that Harappan civilization developed independently

Harappan Civilization: Cities There were five cities, best know of which were Harappa: namesake of the civilization Mohenjo-Daro Cities were known for their Planned neighborhoods with grid pattern Sophisticated drainage system (most had indoor bathrooms with sewage system) Communal granaries Bathhouses Citadels or great structures (palaces, temples, granaries) built on hills (Left) Population: 35,000 or more each

There were five cities, best know of which were

Harappa: namesake of the civilization

Mohenjo-Daro

Cities were known for their

Planned neighborhoods with grid pattern

Sophisticated drainage system (most had indoor bathrooms with sewage system)

Communal granaries

Bathhouses

Citadels or great structures (palaces, temples, granaries) built on hills (Left)

Population: 35,000 or more each

Harappan Civilization: Surrounding Regions Hundreds of farming communities for each city Comprising territory of 300,000 miles square (775,000 km square) Other cities beyond region Lothai: similar urban planning Shortugai: a mining settlement (source of lapis lazuli) 621 mi east of Indus

Hundreds of farming communities for each city

Comprising territory of 300,000 miles square (775,000 km square)

Other cities beyond region

Lothai: similar urban planning

Shortugai: a mining settlement (source of lapis lazuli) 621 mi east of Indus

Harappan Civilization: Public Urban Design Primary source: Jane McIntosh A Peaceful Realm Uniform design for Harappa, Mohenjo-Daro, and Kalibangan Dominated by a citadel raised on a mud brick platform in western edge of city Surrounded by large granaries, bathhouses, and other public buildings Encompassed by a monumental wall Residential areas spread out on eastern side

Primary source: Jane McIntosh A Peaceful Realm

Uniform design for Harappa, Mohenjo-Daro, and Kalibangan

Dominated by a citadel raised on a mud brick platform in western edge of city

Surrounded by large granaries, bathhouses, and other public buildings

Encompassed by a monumental wall

Residential areas spread out on eastern side

Harappan Civilization Residential Urban Design Planning made well in advance of growth Bricks for houses were standard size in 1:2:4 proportions (e.g. 7 X 14 X 28 cm) Alignment of roads were laid out in precise grids of parallel and perpendicular routes Streets comprised broad thoroughfares, separated by secondary streets, separated by narrow pathways leading to residences

Planning made well in advance of growth

Bricks for houses were standard size in 1:2:4 proportions (e.g. 7 X 14 X 28 cm)

Alignment of roads were laid out in precise grids of parallel and perpendicular routes

Streets comprised broad thoroughfares, separated by secondary streets, separated by narrow pathways leading to residences

Harappan Civilization: Economy A standard of weights and measures was established. Sections of cities were blocked off for craft specialists Potters --Flint workers Metal workers --Brick makers Shell workers --Ivory carvers Textile workers –Shell workers Precious stone workers Wood workers --Seal makers Other workshops, such as bakeries and bead manufacturers

A standard of weights and measures was established.

Sections of cities were blocked off for craft specialists

Potters --Flint workers

Metal workers --Brick makers

Shell workers --Ivory carvers

Textile workers –Shell workers

Precious stone workers

Wood workers --Seal makers

Other workshops, such as bakeries and bead manufacturers

Harappan Civilization: Trade Imported exotic raw materials Gold --Lead Lapis lazuli --Turquoise Alabaster --Amethyst Agate --Carnelian Chalcedony Exported finely finished goods Harappan seals found in Sumeria Bahrain was the transshipping point

Imported exotic raw materials

Gold --Lead

Lapis lazuli --Turquoise

Alabaster --Amethyst

Agate --Carnelian

Chalcedony

Exported finely finished goods

Harappan seals found in Sumeria

Bahrain was the transshipping point

Harappan Civilization: Political and Social Organization Political organization was tight and centralized Dwellings varied considerably From mansion with several rooms and courtyards To single-room apartments Despite stratification, Names of rulers are unknown No lavish displays of wealth No evidence of bombastic rulers boasting of their deeds on monument walls

Political organization was tight and centralized

Dwellings varied considerably

From mansion with several rooms and courtyards

To single-room apartments

Despite stratification,

Names of rulers are unknown

No lavish displays of wealth

No evidence of bombastic rulers boasting of their deeds on monument walls

Harappan Civilization: Militarism or Lack Thereof McIntosh’s title Peaceful Realm summarizes the lack of militaristic evidence No evidence of major defensive works around Indus cities or villages No weaponry in the artifact assemblages No cemeteries with skeletons reflecting war-related wounds Art reflected a priestly class (upper left) and possibly fertility (lower left) A remarkable exception to the general pattern of civilization: development via imperialistic war

McIntosh’s title Peaceful Realm summarizes the lack of militaristic evidence

No evidence of major defensive works around Indus cities or villages

No weaponry in the artifact assemblages

No cemeteries with skeletons reflecting war-related wounds

Art reflected a priestly class (upper left) and possibly fertility (lower left)

A remarkable exception to the general pattern of civilization: development via imperialistic war

Harappan Civilization: Writing Writing is yet to be deciphered, so we know less than we otherwise might 400 different pictographic symbols have been identified Scholars agree they might be a mixture of sounds and concepts But differ on what the common language was, or if there were more than one Other depictions suggest forerunners to Hinduism Seals depict three headed figure in yogic position Surrounded by tigers, water buffalo, elephants, and other indigenous fauna This figure may be Shiva, Lord of Beasts Other seals depict cattle, symbol of Shiva

Writing is yet to be deciphered, so we know less than we otherwise might

400 different pictographic symbols have been identified

Scholars agree they might be a mixture of sounds and concepts

But differ on what the common language was, or if there were more than one

Other depictions suggest forerunners to Hinduism

Seals depict three headed figure in yogic position

Surrounded by tigers, water buffalo, elephants, and other indigenous fauna

This figure may be Shiva, Lord of Beasts

Other seals depict cattle, symbol of Shiva

Causes of Decline Possibly a major river, the Ghaggar-Hakra River, shifted, forcing the population to move elsewhere Other Probable Factors Shift in major trade routes Deforestation and soil erosion Flooding of the Indus River

Possibly a major river, the Ghaggar-Hakra River, shifted, forcing the population to move elsewhere

Other Probable Factors

Shift in major trade routes

Deforestation and soil erosion

Flooding of the Indus River

Post-Harappan South Asia (1700-180 BC) Population moved to the Ganges Rice replaced wheat and barley Iron technology emerged 16 kingdoms later developed along the Ganges Classic period of South Asia began Brahmin religion Buddhism also developed and spread Invasion of outside powers Darius of Persia incorporated Indus region to the Persian empire in 516 BC Alexander the Great came along two centuries later, failed to conquer all of India Mauryan Empire developed from vacuum and dominated India from ca 300 BC to 185 BC; sway extended from Nepal to Daccan region

Population moved to the Ganges

Rice replaced wheat and barley

Iron technology emerged

16 kingdoms later developed along the Ganges

Classic period of South Asia began

Brahmin religion

Buddhism also developed and spread

Invasion of outside powers

Darius of Persia incorporated Indus region to the Persian empire in 516 BC

Alexander the Great came along two centuries later, failed to conquer all of India

Mauryan Empire developed from vacuum and dominated India from ca 300 BC to 185 BC; sway extended from Nepal to Daccan region

Conclusion Similarities with Other Civilizations: High-yield subsistence base, supported by irrigation Centralized authority with stratification Presence of writing Differences from Other Civilizations: No evidence of extreme stratification No evidence of warfare Highly planned urban society Standardized economy

Similarities with Other Civilizations:

High-yield subsistence base, supported by irrigation

Centralized authority with stratification

Presence of writing

Differences from Other Civilizations:

No evidence of extreme stratification

No evidence of warfare

Highly planned urban society

Standardized economy

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