History notes for SSC : Harappan Civilization/ Indus Valley Civilization

The stone age ended as soon as the first metal “copper” was discovered. This lead to the start of the Chalcolithic period. Soon copper was mixed with tin to get bronze which was more strong and durable than copper. The Harappan Civilization belonged to this Bronze age (2500-1700 BCE). It was one of the ancient civilizations of the whole world.

The four ancient contemporary Civilizations were:

  1. Egyptian Civilization: Along river “Nile”
  2. Mesopotamian Civilization: Along river Tigris and Euphrates
  3.  Chinese Civilization: Along river Huang Ho
  4. Indus  Valley/ Harappan Civilization: Along River Indus, saraswati and its tributaries

Indus Valley Civilization was the largest among the four.

Some important facts about IVC were:

  1. IVC is also called Harappan Civilization as Harappa was first site discovered
  2. IVC is also called Bronze Age Civilization as Bronze was the most prominent metal used
  3. It existed between 2500-1700 BCE
  4. Harappa was discovered by excavator “Dayaram Sahni” in 1921
  5. 2nd site discovered was Mohenjodaro, by “RD Bannerjee” in 1922
  6. The exacavation was lead by John Marshall
  7. IVC was 1st in the world to grow cotton
So as mentioned in the notes above we will study this chater in different parts. So lets start the first part:

Town Plan

  • Indus Valley Civilization had a very Planned way of constructing their cities following a grid pattern.
  • Main roads were in North-south Direction while the alleys were in the East-west direction
  • Doors opened in alleys and not on the main roads
  • Underground covered drains were present with manholes
  • houses were:
    • 1 to 2 storey high
    • Made of burnt bricks
    • size of brick was in ratio 1:2:4

Agriculture and Domestication

  • Main food crop/staple food crop: Wheat and Barley
  • Rice husk found in Lothal and Rangpur which proves growth of Rice as well
  • 1st people in the world to grow cotton
  • Sheep, goats, buffalows, oxen, dogs were domesticated
  • No remains of Cow and lion were found

Religious beliefs

  • Chief male god: Pashupati( believed to be Shiva)
  • Chief female god: Mother goddess( a plant growing from woman’s womb)

Trade and measurements

  • Tin and precious stones: imported from Iran and Afganistan
  • Gold imported from Karnataka
  • Copper from Rajasthan and Oman
  • cubical Stone weights were used in the multiple of 16(Concept of annas)

Indus Valley Sites

There were many sites discovered and are still being discovered. We will look only at some of the important sites of IVC

With this we come to an end of Indus Valey Civilization. If you want to see the video tutorial of the chapter, do visit our youtube page and like our videos and subscribe to our channel.

Thank you

To go to next chapter: Who were Aryans: Click here