(RAS) Ancient History of India

The Bronze Age in the Indian subcontinent began around 3300 BCE. The Indus Valley region was one of three early cradles of civilization in the Old World; the Indus Valley civilisation was the most expansive, and at its peak, may have had a population of over five million.

The following are the important topics to study from Ancient Indian History:

  • Prehistoric India
  • Historic India
  • Indus Valley Civilization
  • Vedic India
  • Mahajanapadas
  • Buddhism and Related Topics
  • Mauryan Empire, Administrative Structure, Rulers and Legacy
  • Gupta Empire, Rulers and Legacy
  • Invasions from Central Asia
  • Kingdoms, States and Dynasties of South India, Their Rulers and Legacy

The Pre-historic period can be classified as:

  • Paleolithic Age – Old Stone Age (BC 1 0000 years ago)
  • Neolithic Age- New Stone Age (BC 10000 -BC 4000)
  • Chalcolithic Age- Copper Stone Age (BC 3000-BC 1 500)
  • Iron Age – Iron Age (BC 1500-BC600)

The era of some important events

  • The beginning of the Earth -4.6 Billion years ago
  • The appearance of man – 4000 years ago (Homosepians)
  • The beginning of the city’s -4700 years ago

Old Stone Age: (Paleolithic Age)

  • They were nomad
  • They discovered fire by using the flint stone.

New Stone Age: (Neolithic Age)

  • The first animal they tamed was a dog
  • They used polished, carved, sharp stone weapons.
  • The wheel was invented.
  • Copper was the first metal used by them.

Places in India where the Old Stone Age tools were found:

  • Pimpet Ca, Mageshwa
  • Rajasthan – Luni Valley
  • Karnataka – Pagalkha
  • Andhrapradesh – Kurnool caves
  • Tamilnadu – Vadamadurai, Athirambakkam, Pallavaram, Kanchipuram, Vellur, Thiruvallur

Copper Age: (Chalcolithic Age)

  • They made tools out of copper as well as small stones.
  • They drew colorful pictures with geometrical patterns
  • The Harappan culture belonged to this age

Iron Age

  • The period, when the tools were made up of iron, was called Iron Age

Indus Valley Civilization

In 1 921, archaeologists found out that it was the ancient city of India.

Harappa in Sindhi means ‘Buried City’.

This civilization flourished in India about 4700 years ago.

The Great Bath:

  • The most important structure found in the citadel was the Great Bath.
  • There were steps on both the sides of the pool
  • There were rooms on all the sides of the pool for changing clothes.
  • Fed by water from a well and the dirty water was emptied by a huge drain.


  • Houses were built in grid system
  • Houses which had two rooms
  • Multi-strayed houses, public hall, granary and public buildings built out of bricks.
  • No windows in the houses.
  • They had a well and a bathroom.
  • There were dustbins in front of the houses

Town Planning:

The northern part of the town was narrow and elevated.

The excavators considered that those were constructed on the security basis.

The eastern side was broad and lowered

Applied Science

  • The science and technology such as construction
  • Selections of lands
  • Measurement of plots
  • Foundation, selection of quality building materials & Geometrical figures were in use

Drainage system:

  • The drains from the houses were covered.
  • They ran along the sides of the streets which were connected to the street drains.
  • They had manholes at regular intervals for cleaning


  • The public drainage system
  • The Great Bath
  • The public hall
  • The street lights
  • The provisions of dustbins show that the administrative system was well organized.


  • There would have been workers like
  • Document writers,
  • Seal maker
  • Carpenters

  Doll makers

  • Masons and other artisans
  • Dolls made out of terracotta
  • They used copper and bronze to make weapons
  • Weights were made out of a kind of stone.

Terracotta seals:

  • Hundreds of rectangular seals were discovered here
  • Pictographic writings were written on them
  • The script had not been deciphered yet.
  • Bulls, cart, dove, boats and a figure of a human meditating are seen


  • Terracotta planks discovered here were engraved with letters
  • They were pictographic writing.
  • These writings are related to the ancient Tamil writings.


  • Agriculturists
  • Artisans
  • Traders
  • Traders
  • Potters
  • Blacksmiths

Agriculture was their main occupation, they cultivated wheat and barley, stored the surplus grains in the granary


  • People wore cotton and woolen dresses
  • Men wore a garment similar to the ‘dhoti
  • Shawl as upper garment


To make ornaments they used

  • Gold
  • Silver
  • Ivory
  • Precious stones


  • Experts in making pots out of terracotta
  • The figures of birds, animals, images of male and female
  • The figures of birds, animals, images of male and female
  • Pots and bowls were discovered


  • The statue of a dancing girl made out of bronze found in Mohenjo-Daro
  • Statue of a man with beard made out of limestone are examples of the excellent sculptures


  • The articles excavated in Mohenjo-Daro tell us about their religious Practices
  • They worshipped Lord Shiva represented as Pashupati
  • Mother Goddess, Lingam, Trident and trees.

Causes for the decline of the towns:

  • Wooden articles would have got destroyed by fire
  • Rivalry because of the civil war
  • Natural calamities and the change in the course of River Indus would have buried things.
  • The Aryans would have destroyed these towns in order to succeed
  • The heap of bones discovered in Mohenjo-Daro is evidence of the invasion of the foreigners

Read more: Ancient Indian History | Art Culture & History | Civil Services Exam | History of India

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