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The Indus Valley civilization is an ancient culture that flourished in the Indus River Valley around 1800 BCE. This civilization built sophisticated cities, invented sewage systems, and traded long distance with Mesopotamia. But they also experienced climate change, and by the time of their decline, they had moved to smaller villages in the Himalayan foothills. Researchers at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution have been studying the civilization for the last several years.
Artifacts from the Indus Valley civilization include pottery and seals with motifs used in rituals. They have also uncovered unique objects like cubical stone weights and seals with Indus writing. These inscriptions show a much higher level of craftsmanship than other artistic artifacts from the civilization.
The Indus civilization is notable for its high level of material culture and tight-knit administration. This resulted in extensive internal trade within its state. Although evidence of actual exportation of objects is still sketchy, it's clear that trade was important in the Indus civilization. For example, the massive Sukkur site strongly suggests trade. Also, the similarity of bronze carts found in Harappa and Chanhu-daro suggests a common source.
More excavation may help us understand the people of the Indus Valley and the origins of the Indus script. However, the site at Mohenjo-Daro is at risk from tourism, pollution, and soil salination. Nevertheless, plans for excavation are under way and funds should be available soon.
The DNA of the people of the Indus Valley Civilization has recently been found in a sample from the town of Rakhigarhi, which is located in what is now the state of Haryana, India. The DNA was buried four to five millennia ago. It pointed to a cosmopolitan civilization whose people shared genetic links to both ancient Iranians and Southeast Asian hunter-gatherers. However, this does not mean that the population of Rakhigarhi was actually from Iran.
Genetics has shown that the populations of the Indus Valley were genetically diverse, even though they were closely related to each other and to other populations. Their ancestry was more similar to those of other groups living in the region, such as the Bronze and Copper Age populations.
The early Indus valley civilization traded with other ancient civilizations. Some sources say that the Harappans traded with the Sumerians in the Gulf of Aden. However, it is not clear whether this trade actually took place. The Mesopotamians had no direct access to the Magan copper mine, so there is little evidence for direct trade between the two.
The Indus valley civilization was highly reliant on trade. They traded with other civilizations in the area, such as Mesopotamia and Persia. They traded in various goods, including terracotta pots and pottery, metals, and seashells.
One of the major mysteries of ancient Indus civilization is its religion. It is difficult to understand the exact nature of this religious tradition, because the Indus script is not deciphered. However, there are some known features of the culture that archaeologists are trying to interpret. These features include the underlying concepts of non-violence and karma.
The religion of the Indus Valley civilization was essentially a goddess-centered, indigenous religion. It is considered the lineal forerunner of Hinduism. Many female terracotta figurines have been discovered at the site, and they are believed to be representations of the Great Mother Goddess. Other important aspects of the religion include the use of animals as a sacred offering, the importance of ritual baths, and the importance of water in religious practice.
Scientists at the University of Georgia are using sediment cores from a small lake in the Himalaya to study climate change and hydroclimate changes during the Indus Valley Civilisation. The sediments contain detailed data on the rise and decline of the civilization over an extended time period. The researchers believe that the changes in climate may have affected the behaviour of humans in these societies.
The climate of the Indus valley region was relatively variable, characterized by substantial differences between winter and summer rainfall patterns, and by steep rainfall gradients. The Indus civilization was located near a deep lake, the Kotla Dahar, and a subtropical climate with mainly monsoon seasons.
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