Iravatham Mahadevan explores a set of ancient Indus signs that he believes are related to agriculture using comparisons to signs in ancient Egyptian and Mesopotamian civilizations.
Articles concerning agriculture in the ancient Indus civilization including crops and crop patterns, and how these might have affected the development of towns and culture.
Curry is the anglicization of the common Hindustani word tarkiiri,, meaning "green vegetable." Cooked vegetables (and some times even meat) are occasionally called tarkari, but this word never appears on an Indian menu.
The study of archaeological textiles produced from plant crops in South Asia has advanced significantly in the past decade as a result of archaeo-botanical studies of seed remains and analyses of fibers.
"The recognition of variation and diversity [in the ancient Indus civilization] has encouraged a gradual, though not universally accepted, shift toward the interpretation that certain categories of Indus material acted as ‘a veneer… overlying diverse local and regional cultural expressions'," write the authors.
What did ancient Indus people eat? What kind of crops did they grow? What did they cook? How might these things differ by city, town and region? To even get close to answering these questions, one needs a "a systematic collation of all primary published macrobotanical data, regardless of their designation as ‘crop’, ‘fully domesticated’ or ‘wild/weedy’ species," writes author Jennifer Bates.
A superb chapter from Cambridge Histories Online of the very complicated development of agriculture in the subcontinent, which is really the story of four different developments, in the northwest (including the Indus valley), north (the Gangetic plains), south and east, each with different timelines, crops and animal husbandry to account for.
"The valleys of Kashmir and Swat in the Western Himalayan-Hindu Kush regions of India and Pakistan are home to an important prehistoric cultural complex beginning at around 5000 BP, loosely grouped as the “Northern Neolithic” (Coningham and Young, 2015), especially characterised by a rich agricultural tradition."