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Indus Valley Civilization

Chapter – 1

The Indus Valley Civilization

A. Answer the following Questions:

1) Name any two important sites of the Indus Valley?

Ans> Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro.

2) Why is the Indus Valley Civilization sometimes called the Harappan culture?

Ans> The first and the best example of the Indus Valley Civilization was found Harappa; so this civilization is sometimes called as Harappan Civilization or Harappan culture.

3) What is the approximate date of the Harappan culture?

Ans> The approximate date of the Harappan culture is between 3250 BCE to 2750 BCE.

4) Give any two features of the town planning

    of the Indus Valley people.

Ans> i) The main streets followed a grid pattern running from north to south or from east to west.

ii) The houses ranged from single room to bigger houses with courtyards having up to twelve rooms.

5) Mention any two features of the drainage system of Indus Valley people.

Ans> i) Each house had its own small drains

which were directly connected with the          street drain.

ii) The drains were covered and underground.

6) How can you say that civic organization of the Indus Valley people was well organized?

Ans> Buildings were not allowed to encroach

upon the public roads. The system of watch and ward at night also existed. All these indicate the existence of some civic organization which was well organized.

 7) Mention any two features of the Great Bath.

Ans> i) The Great Bath is 55mt. long and 35 mt. wide.

ii) There are galleries and rooms all-roundthe swimming pools.

8) Mention why seals are important?

Ans> Much of the information regarding theIndus Valley people has been drawn from these seals. These seals also throw light on the commercial activities of the Induspeople.

9) What is the nature of the Indus script?

Ans> Indus script is pictographic in nature. It is assumed that each letter stands for some idea, sound or object.

10) Name the two Indian archaeologists related with the excavation of the Indus Valley Civilization?

Ans) Rakhaldas Banerjee andDayaram Sahani.

11) Give the extent of the Indus Valley Civilization.

Ans> Lothal in Gujarat, Kalibangan in Rajasthan, Alamgirpur in Uttar Pradesh an Mitathal in Hissar.

12) State two features of the religious beliefs of the Indus Valley people.

Ans> The Indus Valley people worshipped Mother Goddess or Shakti that reveals that people believed in female energy to be the source of all creation. They also believed in life after death.

13) What is known about the social life of the Indus Valley people?

Ans> The Indus Valley people lived in a well-planned city with a developed civic organization. Health and sanitation toowere taken care of.

14) Write about the amusement of Indus

Valley people.

Ans> Dice was a popular game. People were also fond of music and dance.

15) What cause the decline of Indus Valley Civilization?

Ans> The reasons for the decline are not

       clear. But historian believe it was flood,

       epidemic, earthquake or Aryan invasion.


1.  With reference to town planning of the Harappan civilisation.

a) Discuss their perfectly planned drainage system. b) Write about the construction of houses.

Ans. a) The Indus Valley towns had a well-developed drainage system.

i) Each house had a soak-pit from where water flowed into the underground drains.

ii) The drains were made of mortars, lime andgypsum.

iii) The drains over covered.

iv) There were manholes at regular intervals for inspection.

v)   The drainage system was based on scientificlines.

Ans. b) Indus Valley people constructed their houses according to a plan.

i) All the houses were solid, brick made, plain and far from artificial decoration.

ii) House were built on raised platforms.

iii) Walls were thick, strong, plastered and coloured, houses had few windows.

iv) Every house had a well, bathroom, kitchen,courtyard, drains and soak pits.

2. a) Briefly describe a stone object of sculpturefrom the Indus Valley.

b) What is the importance of the seals foundat Indus Valley sites?

Ans. a) A fine specimen of the Indus Valley sculpture is the head of a shawl-clad yogi,made of soap stone is drapped in a shawlworn over the left shoulder and under the right arm. His eyes are long and half closed inmeditation. The nose is well formed and of amedium size, mouth is average size, with a close- cut moustache, short beard and whiskers etc.

b)  More than 2000 seals have been found from the Indus Valley civilisation. They tell us about thephysical features of the men and women, birds and animals in the Indus Valley towns. They also give information about the dress, ornaments, hair-styles, religion, commercial activities of the IndusValley people.

3)   Write short description of the following—

       a) the Great Bath

       b) the Great Granary

       c) the Assembly Hall

Ans. a) The Great Bath-> The Great Bath was excavated from Mohenjo-Daro. It resembled a large swimmingpool. It was 55m. long and 35m. wide. It had rooms and galleries all around. It was fed a nearby well and dirty water was taken out through a huge drain. This pool was very strong and water tight.

b) The Great Granary -> The Great Granary has been discovered at Mohenjo-Daro. It is 45.71m. long and 15.23m. wide. It was used for storing grains.

c) The Assembly Hall-> The Assembly Hall has been excavated at Mohenjo-Daro. It was high pillared Assembly Hall. It was used for conducting the business of the state.

4)   Sometimes, the Indus Valley Civilisation is called the Harappan Culture, why?

Ans. The first and the best example of the Indus ValleyCivilisation was found at Harappa; so, this Civilisation is sometimes called as Harappan Culture.

5)   Mention the main occupations of the Indus Valley people and give evidence that they had a developed industry.

Ans. Agriculture, domestication of animals, spinning and weaving pottery and jewellery making, metalworks, ivory works, trade and commerce etc.,were some of the main occupations of the IndusValley people.Discovery of metal works, weights, jewellery, beads, and armlets, tools, pottery items etc. showsthat the Indus Valley people had a developedindustry.

6)  What does Mohenjo-Daro mean? Name some other centers of the Harappan culture except Harappa andMohenjo-Daro.

Ans. Mohenjo-Daro is a Sindhi word meaning ‘Mount of the Dead’.ChanhuDaro (Pakistan), Lothal (Gujrat), Kalibangan (Rajasthan), Alamgirpur (Uttar Pradesh) are some other centres of the Harappan Culture.

7) Describe the ornamentation and make-up of IndusValley people.

Ans. Indus Valley men and women, both, used to wearornaments like necklaces, finger-rings, armlets fillets etc. Women wore ear-rings, nose-studs, girdles, anklets, bangles etc. These ornaments werevery charming beautiful, in various shapes and design and were made of gold, silver, copper, ivory,shells, bones, precious stones etc. Indus Valley people used cosmetics also. This is clear from thediscovery of toilet jars. Women also used the facepoint, lipstick, perfumes etc.

8)  Describe the religion of the Indus Valley people with reference to the following:

       a) Worship of Mother Goddess.

       b) Worship of Lord Shiva.

Ans. a) Shakti or Mother Goddess was perhaps themost important deity of the Indus Valley people. Some seals bearing her figures are smoke-stained. This shows that people burnt incense whileworshipping her.

       b) Lord Shiva was worshipped as Shiva Pashupati.In one of the seals, he has been shown sitting on araised platform, cross-legged, in meditation, witheyes fixed at the nose tip. This deity has three faces and a Trishul on the crown of the head. Animals surround him. He was also worshipped in the Linga and Yoni form.

9)    What was the use of the seals of the Indus Valleypeople?

Ans. Indus Valley people used their seals to depict theirGods and Goddesses, to mark stamps on certain goods, etc. Possibly these seals were used as the medium of exchange in trade and commerce.

10) Give the main features of the religion of the IndusValley people?

Ans. The main features of the religion of the people of the Indus Valley people are as follows:

a) They worshipped Mother Goddess or Shakti.

b) They also worshipped Lord Shiva as Pashupati.

c) Indus people were nature worshippers.

d) They also worshipped tress and animals.

e) They had faith and charms and amulets.

f)  Both cremation and burial of dead bodies were prevalent.

g) They believed in life after death.

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