The Indus Valley Civilization By Marianne Nacanaynay
The Discovery • Charles Masson was traveling in India when he came upon a mysterious brick mound. His real name was James Lewis, and he was a runaway from the British Army. • The next people to discover it were railroad workers, and they took some bricks to build the railroad. • Excavation of the site did not start until the 1920’s.
Geography • Valleys are u-shaped or v-shaped pieces of land, usually formed by weathering. • The Indus Valley takes its name from the Indus River, which starts from the Himalayan Mountains and down into the Arabian Sea. • The Indus Valley civilization extends into Pakistan and part of India.
Daily Life • Homes were either one room or many rooms surrounding a courtyard. • No windows extended out into the main street, preventing excess noise. • Roofs were flat, good for sunbathing or relaxing on a hot night. • About 9 out of 10 people lived in small villages rather than the big city.
Communication • There has been little progress on deciphering the language after the civilization was found. • There are many competing theories of related languages to the Indus Valley script. • The average number of symbols on a script is five, the longest known twenty-six.
Religion/Leaders • It is not known if the Indus Valley people had a leader. They did have priests, however, and there are theories about a certain statue. • The priest-king is a statue that archaeologists found. They predict that he might have ruled the Indus people.
Trading/Bartering • Seals were given to travelers when they stopped at a trader’s booth. • Popular trade items included terracotta pots, beads, cotton cloth, gold and silver, gem stones, minerals, lead and copper, jade, cedar tree wood, seashells, and pearls. • Indus Valley seals have been found in Mesopotamia, which means that they traded there.
Entertainment • Pets were common entertainment for all ages. You could have a monkey, birds in cages, lizards, snakes, baby deer, wild pigs, lambs, dogs, and baby goats. • Older people, however, enjoyed gambling. • There were some toys, games similar to Frisbee. • Frisbee is a game played between two or more players, with a disc going between them.
The End of the Indus Civilization • In 1900 B.C. to 1700 B.C. the civilization started to fall apart. • It is not known how the civilization ended. • There are many theories, like it ended from natural disasters, floods, war, famine, and disease. • The leading theory is natural disasters, and that invaders moved in afterwards.
Contributions • They might have created the first dice and chess boards. • Every ancient civilization gives a gift to the world. The ancient Egyptians the pyramids, the ancient Chinese the Great Wall of China. The Indus Valley people showed us how to live peacefully, which they did for over 500 years.
Interesting Facts • Did you know that the Indus Valley drains are probably the best drain system and cleanliness of all other ancient civilization’s drains? • If you were Indus, 50 years old would seem like you were 90-100 years old! If you were in your thirties, that would count as fifties. • The Ancient Indus Civilization was bigger than Ancient Egypt!