Dr. K.Y. Chen's Laboratory - The Five Original Writing Systems

Harappan

harappanArchaeological and linguistic evidence indicates that the Dravidians were the founders of the Harappan culture which extended from the Indus Valley through northeastern Afghanistan, on into Turkestan. The Harappan civilization existed from 2600-1700 BC. The Harappan civilization was twice the size the Old Kingdom of Egypt. In addition to trade relations with Mesopotamia and Iran, the Harappan city states also had active trade relations with the Central Asian peoples.

To compensate for the adverse ecological conditions, the Harappans first settled sites along the Indus river. (Fairservis 1987:48) The Dravido-Harappans occupied over 1,000 sites in the riverine Indus Valley environments where they had soil and water reserves. The Harappan sites are spread from the Indus Valley to Ai Kharnoum in northeastern Afghanistan and southward into India. In Baluchistan and Afghanistan Dravidian languages are still spoken today. Other Harappan sites have been found scattered in the regions adjacent to the Arabian sea, the Derajat, Kashmir, and the Doab.

The Indus region is an area of uncertain rains because it is located on the fringes of the monsoon. Settlers in the Indus Valley had to suffer frequent droughts and floods. Severe droughts frequently occurred in the Indus Valley so the people dug wells to insure for themselves a safe supply of water.To compensate for the adverse ecological conditions, the Harappans settled sites along the Indus river.The Mature Harappan civilization is divided into two variants the Sorath Harappan and the Sindhi Harappan. The Sindhi Harappan sites are sites characterized by elaborate architecture, fired brick construction, sewage systems and stamp seals. The Sindhi Harappan styles have been found in Gujarat, Kutch, the Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh. The major Sindhi cities include Mohenjodaro, Lothal, Rangpur, Harappa, Rangpur, Desalpur, Shirkotada, Manda, Ropar, Kalibangan and Chanhudaro.

The Sindhi Harappans possessed writing, massive brick platforms, well-digging a system of weights-and-measures, black-and-red ware (BRW), metal work and beads. (Possehl 1990:268) The Harappans were masters of hydraulic engineering.They were a riverine people that practiced irrigation agriculture. They had both the shaduf and windmills.(Fairservis 1991) In the Harappan sites domestic quarters and industrial areas were isolated from each other. The Sorath Harappan sites lack stamp seals, ornaments and elaborate architecture. Sorath is the ancient name for Saurashtra. The Sorath Harappan sites are located in Saurashtra, Kulli, and the Harappan style of Baluchistan and Gujarat. The Dravido-Harappans occupied over 1,000 sites in the riverine Indus Valley environments where they had soil and water reserves. The Harappan sites are spread from the Indus Valley to Ai Kharnoum in northeastern Afghanistan and southward into India. In Baluchistan and Afghanistan Dravidian languages are still spoken today. Other Harappan sites have been found scattered in the regions adjacent to the Arabian sea, the Derajat , Kashmir and the Doab.