Indian History
General Knowledge

Harappan or Indus Civilization

(2500 BC - 1750 BC)

Harappan / Indus Civilization (2500 BC - 1750 BC)

» The oldest name is Indus Civilization
» According to archaeological tradition, the most appropriate name – Harappan Civilization (Harappa-the first discovered site).
» According to geographical point of view, the most suitable name – Indus – Saraswati river (the largest concentration of settlement – along the Indus-Saraswati river valley; 80% settlement along the Saraswati).
» The most accepted period-2500 BC-1750 BC (by Carbon-14 dating)
» John. Marshal, was the first scholar to use term 'Indus Civilization’.
» The Indus Civilization belongs to (Paleolithic Age/ bronze age).
» The Indus Civilization was spread over Sindh, Baluchistan Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Western U.P. and Northern Maharashtra'
» Scholars generally believe that Harappa-Ghaggar-Mohenjodaro axis represents the heartland of the indus Civilization.
» The Northern most site of Indus Civilization— Ropar (Sutlaj)/ Punjab (Earlier); Manda (Chebab) / Jammu-Kashmir (Now).
The Sothern most site of Indus Civilization - Bhagatrav (Kim)/Gujarat (Earlier); Daimabad (Pravara)/Maharashtra (Now).
The Eastern-most site of Indus Civilization-Bhagatrav (Kim) / Gujarat (Earlier). Daimabad (Pravara) / Maharastra (Now).
The Western-most site of Indus Civilization-Sutkagendor (Dashk)/Makran Coast (Pakistan-Iran Border).

Capital Cities — Harappa, Mohenjodaro
Port Cities — Lothal, Sutkagendor, Allahdino, Balakot, Kuntasi
» Mohenjodaro - the largest site of Indus Civilization
» Rakhigarhi — The largest Indian site of Indus Civilization

Common Features of Major Cities

» Systematic town-planning on the lines of grid system
» Use of burnt bricks in constructions
» Underground drainage system (giant water reservoirs in Dholavira)
» Fortified citadel (exception- Chanhudaro)

Surkotada (Kutchh district, Gujarat)

The only Indus site where the remains of a horse have actually been found.

Main Crops

Wheat and Barely; Evidence of cultivation of rice in Lothal and Rangpur (Gujarat) only. Other Crops : Dates, mustard, sesamum, cotton etc. Indus people were the first to produce cotton in the world.


Sheep, goat, humped and humpless bull, buffalo, boar, dog, cat, pig, fowl, deer, tortoise, elephant, camel, rhinoceros, tiger etc.
» Lion was not known to Indus people. From Amari, a single instance of the Indian rhinoceros has been reported.
» There was extensive inland and foreign trade. Foreign trade with Mesopotamia or Sumeria (Modern Iraq), Bahrain etc.