Archaeological sites in Pakistan

Last updated

Pakistan is home to many archaeological sites dating from Lower Paleolithic period to Mughal empire. The earliest known archaeological findings belong to the Soanian culture from the Soan Valley, near modern-day Islamabad. Soan Valley culture is considered as the best known Palaeolithic culture of Central Asia. [1] Mehrgarh in Balochistan is one of the most important Neolithic sites dating from 7000 BCE to 2000 BCE. The Mehrgarh culture was amongst the first culture in the world to establish agriculture and livestock and live in villages. [2] Mehrgarh civilization lasted for 5000 years till 2000 BCE after which people migrated to other areas, possibly Harappa and Mohenjo-daro. [2] Harappa and Mohenjo-daro are the best known sites from the Indus Valley civilization (c 2500 - 1900 BCE). [3]

Contents

Archaeological ruins at Mohenjo-daro, Sindh, Pakistan Mohenjo-daro.jpg
Archaeological ruins at Mohenjo-daro, Sindh, Pakistan

Stone Age

Lower Paleolithic (Pre-Soanian)

View of Soan valley and Soan River in background, near Adiala Soan near Adiala.JPG
View of Soan valley and Soan River in background, near Adiala

Pre-Soanian culture in Pakistan corresponds to Oldowan culture dating back to the Mindel glaciation. Some findings in Punjab belong to this period. [4]

Lower to Middle Paleolithic (Soanian)

Early Soanian sites correspond to the Acheulean period. Different stone artifacts have been discovered from these sites from all over Pakistan. [4] Sites in Soan Valley and Potohar Plateau from this period include; [5]

Neolithic

Mehrgarh (c. 7000 BCE - 2000 BCE), from Neolithic age, in Balochistan is one of the earliest sites with evidence of agriculture and village structure. [2]

Pre Harappa

Pre-Harappan farming communities date back to Neolithic time which ultimately evolved into urban Harappan civilization. [6] [7] Explorations and archaeological findings establish the dateline of Pre-Harappan culture from 2700 BC to 2100 BC followed by Harappan period from 2100 BC onwards. [8] Some of the regions showing pre-Harappan culture include;

Bronze Age

A large well and bathing platforms from Harappa occupation, Punjab, Pakistan WellAndBathingPlatforms-Harappa.jpg
A large well and bathing platforms from Harappa occupation, Punjab, Pakistan
Early Harappan
Indus Valley civilization

Iron age

Dharmarajika stupa at Taxila ruins Dharmarajika stupa,Taxila.jpg
Dharmarajika stupa at Taxila ruins

Middle age

Classical age

Late medieval age

Islamic era

Islamic influence in the region started as early as 7th Century.

See also

Related Research Articles

Cemetery H culture culture of the Indus Valley Civilization

The Cemetery H culture was a Bronze Age culture in the Punjab region in the northern part of the Indian subcontinent, from about 1900 BCE until about 1300 BCE. It was a regional form of the late phase of the Harappan civilisation.

Harappa Archaeological site in Punjab, Pakistan

Harappa is an archaeological site in Punjab, Pakistan, about 24 km (15 mi) west of Sahiwal. The site takes its name from a modern village located near the former course of the Ravi River which now runs 8 km (5.0 mi) to the north. The current village of Harappa is less than 1 km (0.62 mi) from the ancient site. Although modern Harappa has a legacy railway station from the British Raj period, it is a small crossroads town of 15,000 people today.

Mehrgarh old archaeological site in Balochistan, Pakistan

Mehrgarh is a Neolithic site, which lies on the Kacchi Plain of Balochistan, Pakistan. Mehrgarh is located near the Bolan Pass, to the west of the Indus River valley and between the present-day Pakistani cities of Quetta, Kalat and Sibi. The site was discovered in 1974 by an archaeological team directed by French archaeologists Jean-François Jarrige and Catherine Jarrige, and was excavated continuously between 1974 and 1986, and again from 1997 to 2000. Archaeological material has been found in six mounds, and about 32,000 artifacts have been collected. The earliest settlement at Mehrgarh—in the northeast corner of the 495-acre (2.00 km2) site—was a small farming village dated between 7000 BCE and 5500 BCE.

Indus Valley Civilisation Bronze Age civilisation in South Asia

The Indus Valley Civilisation (IVC) was a Bronze Age civilisation in the northwestern regions of South Asia, lasting from 3300 BCE to 1300 BCE, and in its mature form from 2600 BCE to 1900 BCE. Together with ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia, it was one of three early civilisations of the Near East and South Asia, and of the three, the most widespread, its sites spanning an area stretching from northeast Afghanistan, through much of Pakistan, and into western and northwestern India. It flourished in the basins of the Indus River, which flows through the length of Pakistan, and along a system of perennial, mostly monsoon-fed, rivers that once coursed in the vicinity of the seasonal Ghaggar-Hakra river in northwest India and eastern Pakistan.

Mohenjo-daro archaeological site in the province of Sindh, Pakistan

Mohenjo-daro is an archaeological site in the province of Sindh, Pakistan. Built around 2500 BCE, it was one of the largest settlements of the ancient Indus Valley Civilisation, and one of the world's earliest major cities, contemporaneous with the civilizations of ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia, Minoan Crete, and Norte Chico. Mohenjo-daro was abandoned in the 19th century BCE as the Indus Valley Civilization declined, and the site was not rediscovered until the 1920s. Significant excavation has since been conducted at the site of the city, which was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1980. The site is currently threatened by erosion and improper restoration.

Indus script Short strings of symbols associated with the Indus Valley Civilization

The Indus script is a corpus of symbols produced by the Indus Valley Civilization. Most inscriptions containing these symbols are extremely short, making it difficult to judge whether or not these symbols constituted a script used to record a language, or even symbolise a writing system. In spite of many attempts, the 'script' has not yet been deciphered, but efforts are ongoing. There is no known bilingual inscription to help decipher the script, and the script shows no significant changes over time. However, some of the syntax varies depending upon location.

Dholavira archaeological site in Kutch, Gujarat in western India

Dholavira is an archaeological site at Khadirbet in Bhachau Taluka of Kutch District, in the state of Gujarat in western India, which has taken its name from a modern-day village 1 kilometre (0.62 mi) south of it. This village is 165 km (103 mi) from Radhanpur. Also known locally as Kotada timba, the site contains ruins of an ancient Indus Valley Civilization/Harappan city. Dholavira’s location is on the Tropic of Cancer. It is one of the five largest Harappan sites and most prominent archaeological sites in India belonging to the Indus Valley Civilization. It is also considered as having been the grandest of cities of its time. It is located on Khadir bet island in the Kutch Desert Wildlife Sanctuary in the Great Rann of Kutch. The 47 ha quadrangular city lay between two seasonal streams, the Mansar in the north and Manhar in the south. The site was thought to be occupied from c.2650 BCE, declining slowly after about 2100 BCE, and that it was briefly abandoned then reoccupied until c.1450 BCE, however recent research suggests the beginning of occupation around 3500 BCE (pre-Harappan) and continuity until around 1800 BCE.

Kot Diji archeological site that predates the Indus Civilization

The ancient site at Kot Diji was the forerunner of the Indus Civilization. The occupation of this site is attested already at 3300 BCE. The remains consist of two parts; the citadel area on high ground, and outer area. The Pakistan Department of Archaeology excavated at Kot Diji in 1955 and 1957.

Amri, Sindh ancient settlement in Sindh province of Pakistan

Amri is an ancient settlement in modern-day Sindh, Pakistan, that goes back to 3600 BCE. The site is located south of Mohenjo Daro on Hyderabad-Dadu Road more than 100 kilometres north of Hyderabad, Pakistan.

Several periodisations are employed for the periodisation of the Indus Valley Civilisation. While the Indus Valley Civilisation was divided into Early, Mature and Late Harappan by archaeologists like Mortimer Wheeler, newer periodisations include the Neolithic early farming settlements, and use a Stage-Phase model, often combining terminology from various systems.

Chanhudaro human settlement in Pakistan

Chanhu-daro is an archaeological site belonging to the Indus Valley Civilization. The site is located 130 kilometers (81 mi) south of Mohenjo-daro, in Sindh, Pakistan. The settlement was inhabited between 4000 and 1700 BCE, and is considered to have been a centre for manufacturing carnelian beads. This site is a group of three low mounds that excavations has shown were parts of a single settlement, approximately 5 hectares in size.

Muhammad Rafiq Mugal is a Pakistani archaeologist, engaged in investigating of ethnoarchaeological research in Chitral, northern Pakistan. He has been responsible for the direction, technical support and supervision for restoration and conservation of more than thirty monuments and excavated remains of the Islamic, Buddhist and Proto-historic periods, in Punjab, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan. He is currently a Professor of Archaeology and Heritage Management and the Director of Undergraduate Studies at Boston University.

Bhirrana Place in Haryana, India

Bhirrana, also Bhirdana and Birhana, {{hi: भिरड़ाना}} is a small village located in Fatehabad District, in the Indian state of Haryana. Its history stretches back to pre-Harappan times, as revealed by archaeological discoveries.

Harappan architecture

Harappan architecture is the architecture of the Indus Valley Civilization, an ancient people who lived in the Indus Valley from about 3300 BCE to 1300 BCE.

Sheri Khan Tarakai is an ancient settlement site located in the Bannu District of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province, Pakistan. Bannu District makes up a part of the topographic region known as the Bannu basin, which sits adjacent to the hills of Afghanistan and Waziristan to the west and the Indus River floodplain on the east.

Sanitation of the Indus Valley Civilisation

The ancient Indus Valley Civilization of South Asia, including current day Pakistan and Northwest India, was prominent in infrastructure, hydraulic engineering, and had many water supply and sanitation devices that were the first of their kind. Most houses of Indus Valley were made from mud, mud bricks or clay bricks. The urban areas of the Indus Valley civilization included public and private baths. Sewage was disposed through underground drains built with precisely laid bricks, and a sophisticated water management system with numerous reservoirs was established. In the drainage systems, drains from houses were connected to wider public drains. Many of the buildings at Mohenjo-daro had two or more stories. Water from the roof and upper storey bathrooms was carried through enclosed terracotta pipes or open chutes that emptied out onto the street drains.

Kanmer Archeological site in Gujarat, India

Kanmer, locally known as Bakar Kot, is an archaeological site belonging to Indus Valley Civilization, located in Rapar Taluk, Kutch District, Gujarat, India.

Archaeology in Pakistan

Pakistan contains some of the oldest archaeological discoveries of the world. The country is home to many archaeological sites dating from Lower Paleolithic period to Mughal empire. The earliest known archaeological findings belong to the Soanian culture from the Soan Valley, near modern-day Islamabad. Soan Valley culture is considered as the best known Palaeolithic culture of Central Asia.

Indus–Mesopotamia relations

Indus–Mesopotamia relations are thought to have developed during the second half of 3rd millennium BCE, until they came to a halt with the extinction of the Indus valley civilization after around 1900 BCE. Mesopotamia had already been an intermediary in the trade of lapis lazuli between South Asia and Egypt since at least about 3200 BCE, in the context of Egypt-Mesopotamia relations.

References

  1. Masson, V. M. (1999). "Lower Palaeolithic cultures". The History of Civilizations of Central Asia (Vol.1). Motilal Banarsidass. p. 50. ISBN   9788120814073.
  2. 1 2 3 West, Barbara A. (2009). "Mehrgarh, Pre-Harappan culture". Encyclopedia of the peoples of Asia and Oceania. New York: Facts On File. p. 519. ISBN   9781438119137.
  3. Possehl, Gregory L. (2002). "Ancient Indian Civilization". The Indus civilization : a contemporary perspective (2. print. ed.). Walnut Creek, Calif.: Altamira Press. p. 1. ISBN   9780759101722 . Retrieved 24 March 2013.
  4. 1 2 Ikawa-Smith, Fumiko (1978). Early Paleolithic in South and East Asia. Walter de Gruyter. p. 89. ISBN   9783110810035 . Retrieved 24 March 2013.
  5. Parth R. Chauhan. "An Overview of the Siwalik Acheulian & Reconsidering Its Chronological Relationship with the Soanian". Archived from the original on 4 January 2012. Retrieved 24 March 2013.
  6. 1 2 Sen, Sailendra Nath (1999). Ancient Indian history and civilization (Second ed.). New Delhi: New Age International. p. 27. ISBN   9788122411980 . Retrieved 25 March 2013.
  7. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Gopal, Lallanji (2008). History of agriculture in India : (up to c. 1200 AD) (1. publ. ed.). New Delhi: Concept. p. 791. ISBN   9788180695216 . Retrieved 25 March 2013.
  8. 1 2 Bhattacharya, B. (2006). Urban development in India : since pre-historic times (2nd rev. ed.). New Delhi: Concept Pub. Co. p. 22. ISBN   9788180692406 . Retrieved 25 March 2013.
  9. 1 2 3 "The Bannu Archaeological Project". Department of Archaeology & Anthropology, University of Cambridge. Archived from the original on 1 July 2013. Retrieved 25 March 2013.