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Old World Civilizations

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Mantej Singh

on 30 March 2018

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Transcript of Old World Civilizations

Old World Civilizations
The Indus Valley Civilization was a Bronze Age civilisation
Located in Northwest Indian Subcontinent and also in some regions in Northeast Afghanistan.
Along with Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia, it was one of three early civilisations of the Old World
The Indus Valley Civilization is also known as the Harappan Civilization, after Harappa.
There were earlier and later cultures, often called Early Harappan and Late Harappan, and pre-Harappan cultures, in the same area of the Harappan Civilization.
The Harappan civilisation is sometimes called the Mature Harappan culture to distinguish it from these cultures.
Settlement Patterns:-
Based on -
The behaviour of river providing an active flood plain and ecology
Accessibility to Natural Resources
Trade Routes

Planning was on 2 levels
Lower levels were the settlements
Upper Levels Consisted of Citadel and other important public buildings
Harappan Civilization
City walls:
Each city in the Indus Valley was surrounded by massive walls and gateways. The walls were built to control trade and also to stop the city from being flooded. Each part of the city was made up of walled sections. Each section included different buildings such as: Public buildings, houses, markets, craft workshops, etc.

The Harappans were excellent city planners. They based their city streets on a grid system. Streets were oriented east to west. Each street had a well-organized drain system. If the drains were not cleaned, the water ran into the houses and silt built up. Then the Harappans would build another storey on top of it. This raised the level of the city over the years, and today archaeologists call these high structures "mounds".Streets were broad.

Wells: Although not every Harappan house had awell, they are quite common and comprise one of the most recognizable features of Harappan urbanism. Over the years, the level of streets and houses were raised owing to the accumulation of debris which necessitated raising the height of the wells. This is the reason why very tall wells are often seen at Harappa and in the surrounding areas.
Houses :
Houses and other buildings were made of sun-dried or kiln-fired mud brick. These bricks were so strong, they have stood up to thousands of years of wear. Each house had an indoor and outdoor kitchen. The outdoor kitchen would be used when it was warmer (so that the oven wouldn't heat up the house), and the indoor kitchen for use when it was colder. In present day, village houses in this region (e.g. in Kachchh) still have two kitchens. Indoor kitchens are used mostly as store houses and are only used for cooking when it rains. Otherwise, residents prefer to use the outdoor kitchens because the dry shrub and cow dung used as cooking fuel are very smoky, making indoor cooking difficult.There was a well in all houses

Lack of temples

So far, no unequivocal examples of temples have been found at sites belonging to the Indus Valley Civilization. Archaeologists do not know yet what religion was practiced in the Indus Valley Civilization. Community water pools (swimming or bathing) do exist, which may be linked with religious practice. Water plays an important role in Hindu sacred places, and pilgrimage to such places often involves sacred bathing (apart from theGanges). The architecture of water pools used by Hindu pilgrimage and in Harappan cities are similar, although scholars disagree whether such similarities are functional, or cultural, in nature.
Harappan architecture is the architecture of the Harappans, an ancient people who lived in the Indus Valley from about 3300 BCE to 1300 BCE. The Harappans were advanced for their time, especially in architecture
Harappa is located near the Ravi River, which is a tributary of the upper Indus region.


Cities like Harappa, which lie on the periphery of the known Indus Valley Civilization, served as gateway cities into the main region.
Divided into 2 parts - Lower part consisting of settlements and upper part consisting of Public buildings
The defining feature of overall town planning of the cities is the cardinal orientation, with the longer grid aligned north-south to take advantage of prevailing winds.
This organization of space into grids is seen not just in town planning in this area but also in house plans, designs on pottery, diagrams on seals and even the designs of the individual script characters.
The town planning was achieved through the development of compass, plum bob and scale, tools which are still found to be in use today.
Walled areas were spread around a central depression that might have been a reservoir and each major mound was surrounded by a mud brick wall, with brick gateways and bastions located at intervals on every face like modern forts.
Cities Of Harappa & Mohenjo-Daro
Large Cities Divided into 2 parts- upper and lower
Square in plan with Defensive Walls
Planning suggests a government with organization and Bureaucratic capacity
Streetlayout grid iron pattern
Streets roughly divided the city into 12 blocks
Basic unit of blocks was a house of varying size and storeys, constructed with brick walls; roofed by bricks tiles over timber rafters
Extensive Drainage
Small drains of brick slabs
Larger drains with corbelled arches with manholes at regular intervals
There were street furniture like Dustbins,Seating, etc.
Situated in Larkana district, Sindh Pakistan
Indus river is situated to the east of the site
The City is divided into 2 parts
1) Citadel - Smaller in area but highly developed.
2)Lower Town - Larger but less developed
The Citadel owes its height to the fact that the buildings were constructed on mud brick platforms almost 12m high
The Lower town is made up of several lower mound that lie to the east and represent multiple walled neighbourhoods
Lower town is organized on a grid system with four avenues running north to south and four running from east to west

Town Planning

Mohenjo-Daro is famous for its well planned sites.
Grid Iron of Main Streets Running from North to South & East to West.
Dividing the area into blocks of roughly equal size.
Two Main Streets at Right Angles
Mostly parallel Streets
Windows are Rare from Fragments of Gratings or Latices of Alabaster and Terracotta Probably represent window screens
City Citadel
Mostly the central block of western side.
In Mohenjo-Daro made of baked bricks, 12m higher than city level.
Had terraces at various levels approached by ramps

Timber shed built over 27 seperate blocks of masonry leaving sufficient criss - cross ventilation at the base

Great Bath
Tank was waterproffed with asphalt
System for supply and drainage of water.
like a pool
Had Staircase entering the pool
Around the bath were rooms

The End Of Harappan Civilization

Harappan Civilization ended by the early 1700's' BC
Perhaps Invaders/Natural Disasters Caused Civilizations to Collapse
Climate Shift: the monsoon patterns
Destruction of forests
Migration of new people - Aryans

Mantej Singh ----------------143701322
Teki Om Swarup ------------143701290
Himangshu Jana ------------143701264
Prabhangshu Changkakaty - 143701272
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