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Ancient History / Indus Valley Civilization

Introduction to Indus Valley Civilization

When we give a brief introduction to Indus Valley Civilization, it is one among the earliest civilizations of the world. Other ancient civilizations are Sumerian or Mesopotamian civilization, Egyptian civilization and Chinese civilization. It is also known as Bronze Age civilization or Harappan civilization. The site name that is discovered first, will be given as the name of the civilization. In 1921, Harappa was discovered first and hence it is called Harappan civilization.


Sometimes, Indus Valley Civilization is also called Proto-Historic civilization. Scripts that are discovered in this civilization, are unable to decipher. Hence, we cannot put it into historical period.

Most of the history of this civilization was studied by Archaeologists and hence it has to be put into proto-history (transitional history). That is it got transformed from script-less society to script society. There seems to be many problems while deciphering the scripts.

These are pictographic scripts without any alphabets. That means these are pictures rather than alphabets. Length of the inscriptions is very short consisting of hardly 3 to 4 pictures.

These inscriptions are on seals, which are nothing but pieces of stones either in rectangular or square shaped. Beautiful gods and animals are also present on the seals. The script is written in a boustrophedon style. That is, it is written from left to right and from right to left in alternate lines.

Boundaries of Indus Valley Civilization

  • Sutkagan Dor is the western boundary of Indus valley civilization that is known till now. It is in Balochistan province of Pakistan bordering Iran.

  • Alamgirpur is the easternmost site. It is located in Meerut district of Uttar Pradesh.

  • Manda is the northernmost point of Indus valley civilization. It is located on the right bank of Chenab river near Jammu.

  • Daimabad is the southernmost boundary, which is located on the left bank of the Pravara river in Maharashtra. Pravara river itself is a tributary of the River Godavari.

    Borders are not static. They keep on changing when new sites are discovered. In fact, Daimabad was discovered recently. Earlier Bhagatrav in Gujarat was the southernmost boundary.

Main builders of Indus Valley Civilization

It was a cosmopolitan civilization consisting of many races. Four different races were living together. They were Mongoloids, Alpinoids, Proto-Australoids and Mediterranean races. Mediterraneans were numerically strong and are popularly known as Dravidians.