Indus Valley Civilization (2350-1750 BC)

This Bronze Age Civilization is also called Harappan because it was discovered in 1921 at the modern site of Harappa situated in the province of West Punjab in Pakistan. The discovery was made by Sir John Marshall, Rai Bahadur Daya Ram Sahni and Madho Sarup Vats. It extended from Jammu in the north to the Naramada estuary in the south, and from the Makran coast of Baluchistan in the west to Meerut in the north-east. The area formed a triangle and accounted for about 1,299,600 square kilometres.      Nearly 1500 Harappan sites are known so far in the Indian sub-continent. Of these, the two most important cities were Harappa in Punjab and Mohenjo-daro (literally the mound of the dead) in Sindh, both forming parts of Pakistan. Situated at a distance of 483 kilometres, they were linked together by the Indus. Other cities are Chanhudaro, about 130 km south of Mohenjo-daro in Sindh, Lothal in Gujarat at the head of the Gulf of Cambay, Kalibangan, which means black bangles, innorthern Rajasthan, and Banawali, which is situated in Hissardistrict in Haryana. Modern technique of Carbon-14 dating has been employed to calculate the date o fthe Indus Valley Civilization. Har appan seal s, whi ch have been obt ai ned from  Mesopotamia, provide additional help. The largest Indus Valley Civilization site is Mohenjodaro. The smallest site is Allahdino. The largest sites in Indiaare  Dholavira and Rakhigarhi. The three  nucleus sites are Mohenjo-daro, Harappa and Dholavira. The number of sites which areconsidered as cities is six. The Indus Valley Civilization was probably ruled by the merchant class.Note: The maximum number of sites were explored by SR Rao in Gujarat (190 sites). At present there are over 350 sites which have been excavat

Important Sites :


In the citadel of Harappa, six granaries were found.

Each granary measured 15.23 × 6.03 metres and lay within a few metres of the river bank.

Harappa also shows two-roomed barracks.

The cemetery R37, containing 57 burials, is located at Harappa.

The most important public place of Mohenjo-daro seems to be the Great Bath, comprising the tank which situated in the citadel mound. It measures 11.88 × 7.01
metres and 2.43 metres deep.

In Mohenjo-daro the largest building is the Great Granary, which is 45.71 metres long and 15.23 metres wide.

A stupa, a college hall, a hammam, assembly halls, a bronze statue of dancing girl and two bronze swords were the other structures found at Mohenjo-daro.

The maximum number of bronze figures have been found in Mohenjo-daro.

The limestone sculpture of a seated male priest was found at Mohenjo-daro.

Note: Maximum number of seals have been found in Mohenjo-daro (57%). The second maximum is at Harappa (36%

Pottery inkpots and writing tablets (leafs) were found at Chanhudaro.

Chanhudaro had no citadel.

Fire altars have been discovered at Kalibangan.

Black bangles were found here.

A house floor containing the design of intersecting circles was found at Kalibangan.

Ploughed fields were found in Kalibangan.

The lower city has been laid out in a grid pattern of streets at Kalibangan.

An atta chakki (grinding stone) was discovered at Lothal.

Rice husk was discovered in Lothal and Rangpur.

A terracotta figure of a horse has been found in Lothal.

Houses in Indus Valley civilization never opened towards the main roads. They opened towards the inside lanes. Lothal, however, was an exception.

Lothal was a major port of exit and entry.

A tiger seal was found at Banawali.

The most extensively used metal in Indus Valley Civilization was pure copper (unalloyed copper).

Amri: Situated in the Sindh region on the banks of he river

Indus; founded by MG Majumdar in 1929.

Surakotada: Situated in Gujarat; founded by Jagat Pati Joshi in 1964.

Sutkagendor: Situated along the Makran coast in Baluchistan. Founded by Aurel Stein in 1927.

Kot Diji: Situated in the Sindh region along the banks of the river Indus.

Rangpur: Situated in Gujarat along the river Madar. Founded in 1931 by MS Vats.