The Indus Valley Civilization
The Indus Valley Civilization was at its height circa 2600 – 1900 BCE and was not discovered by historians until the 1920’s when excavations uncovered the city of Harappa. The civilization itself was geographically located along the Indus River in present-day Pakistan and India. The Indus Valley Civilization is difficult for scholars to study because there are no written records of the civilization and the way of life of the people.
All that scholars know is because of archaeological excavations and interpretation of the artifacts found in these digs. There was some form of written language but it is debatable whether it was a language or simply symbols, and no one can decipher it. Everything that historians now know about this civilization is from how they interpret the evidence found in archaeological digs and this means that they cannot know about a lot of things for which they do not have evidence, like political system, classes, or religious system.
While there is a lot that scholars do know about the Indus Valley Civilization, there is still a lot that they cannot know or that they are simply guessing about because of the evidence that they do have and because of similar civilizations of the same time period. If it wasn’t for archaeology no one would know about the Indus Valley Civilization at all. Artifacts such as a scale let historians know that the people of the Indus Valley had precise measurement systems, and beads found show that they had an artisan class.
There are also materials from other regions used in their seals and beads, which means that they traded with other civilizations. Overall, everything known about the Indus Valley Civilization has been found by a close study of the materials left behind by the people and that is why it is difficult to understand its place in history.
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