Gola Dhoro (Bagasra)

Gola Dhoro (Bagasra)

Craft Production at Gola Dhoro

Faience Making
Faience and Stone Beads

A large number of tubular beads and a few bangles of faience were recovered from the site. The local manufacture of faience from the site comes from the recovery of large number of chunks of white rock quartz that may have been the basic source of silica powder used in the faience production. The areas associated with the production of silica powder are mostly associated with intense burning and whitish powder and are confined to within the fortified area only.

One such interesting area measuring 3.5 x 2m is situated close to the eastern periphery of the fortification wall. Here a fine patch of fire contained a thick layer of whitish powder and small quartz pieces. X-ray Diffraction analyses of the whitish powder samples from these areas indicate it as quartz powder. The recovery of exceptionally large number and heavy stone querns and pestles kept upside down in near by area perhaps used in the preparation in silica powder. Presence of them in larger numbers at one place perhaps suggest their industrial rather than domestic use. Repeated firing and subsequent crushing of quartz to produce a fine quartz powder to be used as an abrasive in polishing of stone bead is being carried out in present day at Khambhat.

A similar technique to produce a fine silica powder for the production of faience objects seems to have been carried out by the Harappans at Gola Dhoro. Except for the areas used preparation of silica powder we have not so for recovered anything else that could be positively associated with the faience production.

Stone Bead Making

Another important craft activity carried out at the site was stone bead production. The majority of the evidence of this craft comes from the southern half of the settlement outside the fortification wall. Though at present we are not able to claim to have discovered the workshop, but we are hopeful that further excavations at the site may yield fruitful evidence. This craft at the site is represented by large number of stone beads, also found in various stages of their production. The assemblage associated with stone bead production also include tapered cylindrical drills made on chert, jasper and chalcedony and constricted cylindrical drills made on a rare form of metamorphic rock that is referred to as "Ernestite" for drilling soft and hard stones respectively.

However, one of the important discoveries associated with this industry is the recovery of stockpiles of raw material, neatly kept in two clay-lined bins that containing large amounts variegated and molted jasper. Both these bins were recovered from a trench close to the interior eastern periphery of the fortification wall. A preliminary observation of these bins indicated that the materials were segregated on the bases of size and the type of raw material. One of the bins contains larger chunks of green - red - white variegated jasper, a broken stone dish and a few complete good quality T. pyrum shell.

While the other bin contains small chunks of black and white molted jasper that seems to have been extensively used at the site in the manufacture of beads. The absence of manufacturing waste of the green-red-white - variegated jasper from the site perhaps indicate that this material was not meant to be used at the site but was carefully stockpiled to be shipped to some where else for the manufacture of beads. This area was perhaps a stockpiling area of a merchant dealing with the supply of raw material to the craftsmen of the settlement as well as to other Harappan bead making workshops. We have already started looking for the resource areas of these stones, however it appears that this material was brought to the settlement that was approximately 70 kilometers southwest in Saurashtra.