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RLG205H5 Lecture Notes - Dravidian Languages, Indus River, Harappa

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Ajay Rao

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Sept 14th
Indus Valley Civilization
-Egypt, Mesopotamia, Indus Valley – 3 oldest civilizations
-Indus River in Pakistan
-lots of material objects, but no texts
-ancient cities – Harappa and Mohanjo-Daro
-3rd and 4th millennia B.C. (2000-3000 B.C.)
-very sophisticated civilization
ostructural elements
oseparated by 350 miles but show similarities
oboth cities have the major elements of a city – central planning
thus must have a central state structure – co-ordination of the
construction of the cities
ex. Mohanjo-Daro: The Great Bath
ex. Mohanjo-Daro: Granery – agriculture, economy
-Indus Valley Seals
owhat do they mean?
-Dravidian language family – spoken in the southernmost part of India (Tamil, Telugu
otheory of the seals is based on how language works
olanguages are related to each other
otheory is that old script in the seals is modern Dravidian
-how did the civilization die and there is no connection?
omany theories…
ounlike regards to the script, we have better evidence to judge the theories
-what are the major theories?
oinvasion (old theory)
ointernal collapse (famine, economic, natural disaster)
-theory of invasion/conquest
oIndus Valley civilization was replaced by the Vedic Civilization
onatural idea is that there must have been a conquest of the Indus people by the
Vedic people
obut when archaeologists looked at the ancient world, there is no evidence to
show for any violence
oVedic are called Aryans – came into Asia after
othus there is a new hypothesis
-theory of internal collapse
orelated to changes in environmental conditions – mainly flooding
oeconomic issues – over-grazing and deforestation
Where did the Aryans come from?
-debate about the origins of the Vedic Aryans
owere they indigenous or did they come from somewhere
-language is the best evidence to prove they came from outside
otheir language (Sanskrit) is very closely related to other European languages
(Indo-European language family) – German, Latin, Greek, Spanish, etc.
-languages cant be related to each other unless the people are related to each other
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