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Wednesday, 21 February 2018

Archaeological and anthropological studies on the Harappan cemetery of Rakhigarhi, India

Vasant S. Shinde  , Yong Jun Kim , Eun Jin Woo , Nilesh Jadhav , Pranjali Waghmare, Yogesh Yadav, Avradeep Munshi, Malavika Chatterjee, Amrithavalli Panyam, Jong Ha Hong, Chang Seok Oh, Dong Hoon Shin 
Published: February 21, 2018

An insufficient number of archaeological surveys has been carried out to date on Harappan Civilization cemeteries. One case in point is the necropolis at Rakhigarhi site (Haryana, India), one of the largest cities of the Harappan Civilization, where most burials within the cemetery remained uninvestigated. Over the course of the past three seasons (2013 to 2016), we therefore conducted excavations in an attempt to remedy this data shortfall. In brief, we found different kinds of graves co-existing within the Rakhigarhi cemetery in varying proportions. Primary interment was most common, followed by the use of secondary, symbolic, and unused (empty) graves. Within the first category, the atypical burials appear to have been elaborately prepared. Prone-positioned internments also attracted our attention. Since those individuals are not likely to have been social deviants, it is necessary to reconsider our pre-conceptions about such prone-position burials in archaeology, at least in the context of the Harappan Civilization. The data presented in this report, albeit insufficient to provide a complete understanding of Harappan Civilization cemeteries, nevertheless does present new and significant information on the mortuary practices and anthropological features at that time. Indeed, the range of different kinds of burials at the Rakhigarhi cemetery do appear indicative of the differences in mortuary rituals seen within Harappan societies, therefore providing a vivid glimpse of how these people respected their dead.
Yog .  


tim drake said...

What about aDNA studies from rakhigarhi ? Any ideas about it's publications? Why is Harvard group delaying it ;)?

Nirjhar007 said...

Hi Tim,

According to this , aDNA will be out this very month .

tim drake said...

Oh thanks, I hope tentative date of publication comes out to be true. Continuity with the haryanvi jats ,eh !! What are your expectations with respect to Y-chromosome haplogroups ? I think R1a1-Z93 , H1-M52 and L1a are going to be there ! On an interesting note ,the jagran news link is also attested in the facebook aDNA India page which seems to be maintained by CCMB hyd so one cannot reject it outright.

Nirjhar007 said...

I think J2 should be there too .Don't expect much ASI . Important will be quality of the samples .

andrew said...

Rumorville favors predominantly Y-DNA L. I can't vouch for how reliable the rumors are although they are purportedly from an insider.

Nirjhar007 said...

Lets see , maybe today or tomorrow.

tim drake said...

"Don't expect much ASI" --- You once commented on the possibility of two ASI - northern ASI and a south-eastern one . Do you still hold that view ? How else would Ust_ishim and Mal'ta Buret boy have considerable % of ASI ?

Nirjhar007 said...

Yes, I still consider it as possible too :) .

abhijeet nene said...

Dear Sir,
I am planning a visit to Rakhigarhi on Sunday, 7 May. I am an amateur enthusiast in this field and also because my daughter is writing a project for her Class XII on the subject Town Planing in Harappan Civilisation.

Any tips on the visit and the project too. Thanks