1921: Sahni's First Finds at Harappa

Mound F, Harappa before excavations

"The excavation of the mounds F and A and B was commenced in the beginning, of January 1921, and continued up to the middle of February. The operations were carried on under my personal supervision, but arrangeĀ­ments for supply of labour, tools, etc., were kindly made by the Executive Engineer, Lahore Provincial Division, The total expenditure on excavations, including the cost of huts provided for' the use of the Bikaner labourers that had to be imported from outside, as no local labourers were available, amounted to Rs. 4,384-5 6."

- Daya Ram Sahni, Annual Progress Report of the Archaeological Survey 1921, p. 9.

As he was excavating and cataloguing his finds over these 6 weeks, Daya Ram Sahni had no idea that he was dealing with the site and remnants of the world's largest Bronze Age civilization. It was far older than he guessed, but still recognizable as many of the goods he brought out of the ground were given familiar names.

In the slides below, his original descriptions accompany the images, together with those of Madho Sarop Vats, John Marshall and others, followed by an updated perspective by Jonathan Mark Kenoyer based on recent excavations at Harappa.