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Ancient cities of Indus Valley Civilization
Oct 21, 2013

General characteristics of ancient cities were that: For protection from seasonal floods and polluted waters, the settlements were built on giant platforms and elevated grounds. Upon these foundations, networks of streets were laid out in neat patterns of straight lines and right angles. The buildings along the roads were all constructed of bricks that were uniform in size. The brick houses of all city dwellers were equipped with bathing areas supplied with water from neighborhood wells. Sophisticated drainage systems throughout the city carried dirty water and sewage outside of living spaces. Even the smallest houses on the edges of the towns were connected to the systems — cleanliness was obviously of utmost importance.

Major sites of the Indus Valley civilization have been discussed as below:

a) Harappa: 

  • Harappa was an Indus civilization urban center. It lies in Punjab Province, Pakistan on the bank of River Ravi. 

  • The first artifact uncovered in Harappa was a unique stone seal carved with a unicorn and an inscription. Similar seals with different animal symbols and writings have since been found throughout the region. This showed direct trade relation with Mesopotamia.

  • Evidence of coffin burial.

  • Red sandstone male torso has been found.


b) Mohenjodaro:

  • Mohenjo Daro lies in Sindh, Pakistan, on the bank of Indus River.

  • Unicorn seals have been found. 

  • Great Bath is surrounded by corridors on all sides and is approached at either end a by a flights of steps in north and south. A thin layer of bitumen was applied to the bed of the Bath to ensure that water did not seep in. Water was supplied by a large well in an adjacent room. There was a drain for the outlet of the water. The bath was surrounded by sets of rooms on sides for changing cloth.

  • Pashupati Shiva on seal has been found.

  • Seal representing mother goddess with a plant growing from her womb has been revealed.

  • Granary consisting of several rectangular blocks of brick for storing grains has been found.


c) Dholavira

  • Dholavira is located on Khadir Beyt, an island in the Great Rann of Kutch in Gujarat State, India.

  • A tantalizing signboard with Indus script has been discovered.

  • Dholavira appears to have had several large reservoirs, and an elaborate system of drains to collect water from the city walls and house tops to fill these water tanks.


d) Lothal

  • Lothal is on the top of the Gulf of Khambat in Gujarat, India, near the Sabarmati River and the Arabian Sea.

  • It was the trade centre for Mesopotamia. 

  • Evidence of Rice harvesting has been found in Lothal only.

  • An artificial dockyard has also been found.

  • A bead factory and Persian Gulf seal have been found.

  • Evidence of horse has been found here only.


e) Kalibangan:

  • It is located in Rajasthan.

  • It was having houses on both sides of the streets, bathrooms and drains of baked bricks.

  • It has a citadel in the west and chessboard pattern city in the East. 

  • The furrows or plough-marks have been observed in a field at Kalibangan. These indicate plough cultivation. 

  • Bones of camel have been found here only. 

  • Burial took place in circular or rectangular grave.

 

Site River 
Harappa  Ravi 
Mohenjodaro Indus
Ropar  Satluj
Banawali  Saraswati
Amri  Indus
Kalibangan  Ghaggar
Alamgirpur  Hindon
Lothal  Bhogwa

 


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