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Tuesday 26 May 2015

Ancient Iron Works From South India

I came to know about the discovery from this website ,it also reminds me the case of  Hallur Horse.

Rare discovery pushes back Iron Age in India

Siddharth Tadepalli 

HYDERABAD: Iron Age may have come into existence in Telangana much before the rest of the world. At least that's the conclusion reached by archaeologists excavating the University of Hyderabad campus who found iron artefacts dating back to roughly 2,200 BCE.

The team of archaeologists, led by professor KP Rao, has found several artefacts, including small knives and blades besides earthen pots. "The implements that were found were tested at the National Geophysical Research Institute (NGRI) using a method called Optically Simulated Luminescence (OSL). The metal objects were dated to anywhere between 1800 BC and 2,400 BCE. So we are assuming they were made during 2200 BC," Prof KP Rao told TOI.

This, he said, predates the existing understanding about the advent of the Iron Age in the country. Worldwide, experts have put the dawn of the age around 1200 BC, marking the time when humans started exploiting metals to make basic tools.

"In India, it was understood that the Iron Age came into being around 1,800 BC in the Lahuradeva site in Uttar Pradesh. But this latest development shows that the Iron Age started much before that, at least in our country," Rao said.

"It only goes to show that our ancestors had a rudimentary yet good knowledge about wielding weapons made of metals. We had estimated that the only metal that was moulded was copper, but due to its scarce nature it was not a feasible option. The idea of using abundant iron ore for tools and weapons is a landmark achievement," he added.

The idea of using iron has only come to lead to more and more developments. "It is because of their advancements did we reach the space-age," he said.

Currently, archaeologists have excavated 25 burial sites in the UOH area and the samples have been subjected to DNA analysis.
Related News-

Sunday 3 May 2015

Evidence for Patterns of Selective Urban Migration in the Greater Indus Valley (2600-1900 BC): A Lead and Strontium Isotope Mortuary Analysis

  •  Benjamin Valentine,George D. Kamenov,,
  • Jonathan Mark Kenoyer,,
  • Vasant Shinde,
  • ,Veena Mushrif-Tripathy,
  •  Erik Otarola-Castillo,
  • ,John Krigbaum


Just as modern nation-states struggle to manage the cultural and economic impacts of migration, ancient civilizations dealt with similar external pressures and set policies to regulate people’s movements. In one of the earliest urban societies, the Indus Civilization, mechanisms linking city populations to hinterland groups remain enigmatic in the absence of written documents. However, isotopic data from human tooth enamel associated with Harappa Phase (2600-1900 BC) cemetery burials at Harappa (Pakistan) and Farmana (India) provide individual biogeochemical life histories of migration. Strontium and lead isotope ratios allow us to reinterpret the Indus tradition of cemetery inhumation as part of a specific and highly regulated institution of migration. Intra-individual isotopic shifts are consistent with immigration from resource-rich hinterlands during childhood. Furthermore, mortuary populations formed over hundreds of years and composed almost entirely of first-generation immigrants suggest that inhumation was the final step in a process linking certain urban Indus communities to diverse hinterland groups. Additional multi disciplinary analyses are warranted to confirm inferred patterns of Indus mobility, but the available isotopic data suggest that efforts to classify and regulate human movement in the ancient Indus region likely helped structure socioeconomic integration across an ethnically diverse landscape.
Fig 1.  Map of the Indus Civilization culture area with locations mentioned in the text.

From The Conclusion-
A consideration of the isotopic data and their bioarchaeological context allows certain inferences to be made about the proposed Indus institution. Isotopic [12] and osteological [13] distinctions between males and females at Harappa and the timing of migration at Farmana suggest certain hinterland individuals from distinct genetic populations took up residence with new corporate groups at a very young age. The inclusion of modest burial wealth may indicate they were treated with respect by local groups, whereas sex-based distinctions in provenience suggest migrants were selected according to the preferences of their natal groups rather than the whims of Indus urbanites. Thus the Indus institution of immigration was integrative, accommodating various ethnic or cultural groups within a standardized set of practices reserved exclusively for a class of first generation immigrant. Furthermore, the scarcity of cemetery inhumations and their potential association with resource-rich regions suggests the institution may have been limited in scope to the economic interests of specific mercantile groups rather than all segments of society. Ethnography from the nearby Hindu Kush Range suggests one possible analogy for the Indus institution. Asymmetric systems of fosterage employed by fractious historical kingdoms to build hierarchical political alliances [86] may be broadly comparable to Indus practices, such that fostered individuals literally embodied the relationships between urban and hinterland groups. Whether or not this particular model is borne out by additional multi-disciplinary analyses, however, our isotopic inferences of migration define key parameters in any future investigation of Indus Civilization inter regional interaction.