Ancient Indus Civilization Blog

323 posts, also carried on our Facebook page, about the ancient Indus Valley civilization, including important news, research and occasional visits to museums with ancient Indus artifacts.
Mar 21, 2016
Asko Parpola writes: "Early Harappan cultures started moving toward the east and south in about 3000 BCE, and later waves of influence in these same directions came from the Indus civilization. That the Harappan water-buffalo cult had reached penninsular India by the late Harappan on Chalcolithic times is suggested by the large bronze sculpture of water buffalo discovered in 1974 in a hoard at Daimabad, the southernmost Indus site in Maharashtra.
Mar 17, 2016
These images that show how difficult if not impossible it is to ascertain Mohenjo-daro's age; the water table even 50 years ago was doing great damage to the city's remains and making deep digging impossible.
Mar 14, 2016
"Mackay found an extraordinary seal in his excavations at Chanhu-daro. It shows a short-horned bull, Bos gaurus, above a prostrate human figure. He thought that the scene depicted an attack by the bull, and the human on the ground was attempting a defense against the trampling animal."
Mar 9, 2016
"Remarkable as it may seem, the [estimated 700] well locations at Mohenjo-daro seem to have been laid out when the original platforms were built."
Mar 8, 2016
Surkotada is a small, 3.5 acre site northeast of Bhuj, in Gujarat. "The mound has an average height of five-to-eight metres (east-to-west) and was discovered by the author during the course of his explorations in Kutch in December, 1964," writes Jagat Pati Joshi in Excavation at Surkotada and Exploration in Kutch.
Mar 4, 2016
The correct answer is Harappa, excavated for 26 seasons, compared to Mohenjo-daro at 15 and Kalibangan at 10 when Gregory Possehl wrote in 1990: "Harappa has been the most frequently investigated of any of the ancient settlements of the Harappan cultural tradition.
Feb 29, 2016
"I saw a herd of unicorns today. I write this in full possession of my senses." So begins the short story The Unicorn Expedition by the great Bengali filmmaker Satyajit Ray. A Professor Shanku story from the early 1960s, one of a series which reflect "my love of [Jules] Verne and [H.G.] Wells and [Sir Arthur] Conan Doyle whose works I read as a schoolboy," wrote Ray. Like anything by him, it is charming and effortless and rich and rich and starts in Mohenjo-daro.
Feb 28, 2016
The Punjab Archeology Department has completed 85 per cent conservation work at remains of Harappa site according to a story in Pakistan Today.
Feb 26, 2016
Fired steatite button seal with four concentric circle designs from the Trench 54 area found at Harappa in 2000 (H2000-4432/2174-3).
Feb 22, 2016
"In January 1927, Mackay began working in L-Area, ca. 28 meters south of the Stupa on the Mound of the Great Bath. He uncovered the so-called 'Assembly Hall' and other architectural remains that are not well understood, even today. He also found three pieces of limestone sculpture: a seated torso (L-950), a reasonably well-preserved bust (L-898) and a very poor, abraded head, possibly of a woman (L-127)."
Feb 22, 2016
Asko Parpola writes: "Akinori Uesugi has shown that the spread of the Kot Diji culture all over the Indus Valley is connected with the spread of a new type of stamp seal, which continues to exist in the following Harappan period. The basic figure in these Kot Diji seals consists of “concentric circles,” usually four of them placed into the four corners of a square or cross-shaped seal."
Feb 17, 2016
Mohenjo-daro!, a 103 slide series by Jonathan Mark Kenoyer, was first put up on in 2005. It offers a comprehensive walk around the current site, with key areas and discoveries, as well as an illustrated 6 page essay on the site.
Feb 16, 2016
"'Every village has its own special guardian mother, called Mata or Amba' - some 140 different 'mothers' in all. 'Generally there is also a male deity, who protects like the female from all adverse and demoniacal influences. But the mother is the favorite object of adoration' (Monier-Williams 1885:222). The same held true in India at large, not least in the Dravidian-speaking south India."
Feb 3, 2016
Touching Mounds at Harappa, one of the oldest inhabited places on earth, and one of those real world images that makes you think about the relationship between past and present.
Feb 2, 2016
A workman handing over the Priest King at the time of excavations in I, Block 2 of DK-B Area during the John Marshal led 1925-26 excavations at Mohenjo-daro. Possehl writes "many classic Harappan style artifacts came to light at this time, including the so-called Priest King which emerged from Dikshit's excavations in DK-B Area, in a building that the excavators thought may have been a hammam or hot bath."


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