Mysteries and unsolved archaeological puzzles of the ancient Indus Valley Civilization.

Indus Cylinder Seals

Impression of a Harappan cylinder seal from Kalibangan
"The cylinder seals of Mesopotamia constitute her most original art," wrote the scholar Henri Frankfort, and much the same has been said about the very different square stamp seals used by the ancient Indus civilization. Cylinder seals are "small, barrel-shaped stone object[s] with a hole down the center, rolled on clay when soft to indicate ownership or to authenticate a document . . . used chiefly in Mesopotamia from the late 4th to the 1st millennium BCE." Many of the handful of cylinder seals found at ancient Indus sites or Mesopotamian ones with Indus themes are collected below. 1.

What's Up with the Granary?

What was the so-called granary used for? There are twelve rooms in this 50 by 40 meter building. It was built on a giant mud-brick platform between 2200 and 2300 BCE, but there is an earlier building under at least one section. Between the rooms are sleeper walls. Excavations in 1998-2000 of this area led to no discovery of grain or pots. At Harappa this structure is next to the equally mysterious "workingmen's platforms" where we think some sort of labor involving water took place (but no traces of indigo dye are found). At Mohenjo-daro, this structure is next to the Great Bath.

Wheeler's Harappan Trench

Sir Mortimer Wheeler's famous trench at Harappa in 1946 and today, when it has been filled in once again. Wheeler writes of the incision he orchestrated: "The monsoon-cutting was filled with mud-bricks, which were carried up in bricks and mud to form an anti-flood 'bolster'' or bund, spreading protectively beyond the outer foot of a great defensive wall 45 feet wide at the base and tapering upwards. The main bulk of the wall was of mud-brick but there was an external revetment of baked brick four feet wide as preserved.

Indus Peoples to Australia in 2200 BCE?

However incredible this may seem, there now seems to be good genetic and material evidence that sailors from India arrived in Australia from either Sindh or South India at the height of the ancient Indus civilization. They brought with them some technologies and a type of dog that forever changed Aborigine culture. As principal scientist Irina Pulgach at the Max Planck Institute writes, "Their findings suggest substantial gene flow from India to Australia 4,230 years ago. i.e. during the Holocene and well before European contact.