The Role of Indus Valley Civilization Architecture in Nation Building

Ancient civilizations have a lot to do with how we think today. Indus Civilization is a mysterious civilization. Everything that we know about Indus Civilization comes from the Archeologists. Little is known in the Indus Valley. Although Indus Valley's inhibitor has an unrecognizable writing system. The archaeologists haven't found weapons, the inhibitors didn't rely on conquest, they relied on trading which is something they can do without harming anybody. Indus Civilization in Harappa has been successful, on their trades, and on their infrastructure. About their institutions, script, and system of governance. Archaeologists have a record that Indus Civilization had trade with Mesopotamia. Indus Civilizations put an identification marker on the goods that they trade-in. Mesopotamia traded bronze to Indus Valley, and Indus Civilization traded Cotton cloth. They have a great irrigation system, Their largest building is 'The Great Bath of Mohenjo Daro' which historians are puzzled on what is the use of the building.

In the Indian subcontinent, the earliest traces of architecture belong to the Indus civilization, dated between 2600 BC to 1800 BC. About a dozen Indus towns have yielded evidence of fortifications. The major Indus cities, such as Harappa, Mohenjo-Daro, and Kalibangan, consist of two distinct elements: on the west a ‘citadel’ mound built on a high podium of mud brick, and a ‘lower city’ containing the main residential area. Not only for their residential structures but also fortifications, the Harappans used mainly bricks - both of the sun-dried as well as baked variety. The walls were very thick and the gates were flanked with bastions. The ramparts aided a dual-purpose - security from neighbouring territories and protection from floods.

The visual hierarchy of the city makes us think about what would have been the basis of segregating the city in two levels. The Citadel housed all the important public buildings like the town halls, religious structures, granaries and the great bath of Mohenjo-Daro. The lower section of the city was where the housing for the citizens was located. The shipyard at Lothal—the oldest known trade centre, formed the ancient trade route between Harappan cities of Sindh in north and the coastline of Saurashtra in the west when the Kutch desert of today was a part of the Sea. It was a vibrant and prosperous trade centre in ancient times, with its trade reaching the far corners of Asia and African subcontinent.

Overall, the architecture of Indus Valley Civilization displayed remarkable planning features in its urban towns, the public spaces and the local houses. The ideologies of the civilization concerning their country’s defence, economic policies and social life can be very well depicted through the architectural remains. Afterwards, in the 11th century with the advent of the Mongolian and Muslim invasions, there raised a need for quickly erecting structures arose the size of stones reduced. Many temples were ripped to pieces to acquire rubble for the quick building of mosques, forts, hammams, palaces etc. Many different combinations such as egg white or jaggery along with lime as binders were tried to yield plasters and mortars to suit different needs in the use of the medium that yielded interesting results and gave rise to a new style, fulfilling the prerequisites of Luxury and stature which their structures demanded.

07 July 2022
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