Harappan Civilization - India
This civilization belonged to the Chalcolithic period. In this age, a new metal called bronze by mixing tin and copper came to be produced. It was harder and better suited to meet the needs of the people. The better tools led to intensive cultivation. Iron was not known to the Indus Valley people. According to Sir John Marshall, the Hindus Valley Civilization may be dated between 3250 B.C. arid 2750 B.C.
The first people seem to have reached India from Africa around 40,000 BC. At first they were hunters and gatherers, like other people around the world at this time. But by around 4000 BC, these people had begun farming and by 2500 BC settled in the Indus river valley [View map] , where they began to live in cities and use irrigation to water their fields. This is a little later than in West Asia, probably because India was not as crowded as West Asia [View map] at this time. A lot of people think that the reason they began to farm, and then build cities was that a gradual warming trend was making it harder to get water, and harder to find wild plants to eat, every year. So every year more and more people moved into the Indus river valley, where there was still plenty of water. When it got really crowded there, people began to build cities.
During this period, the climate of the region was moist with humid land; dense forests grew where animals like tiger, elephants and rhinoceros roamed. The forests provided timber for brick kilns, which supplied bricks to the cities.
There were two main cities that we know of, Harappa [View map] and Mohenjo-Daro [View map] , about 400 kilometers (250 miles) away. Both are in modern Pakistan [View map] . The people of these cities lived in stone houses two and three stories high, and had sewage systems. They used bronze tools. They may have learned to make bronze from the Sumerians.
The Harappa people used an early form of writing based on hieroglyphs, like the Egyptians. But we can't read it, because there isn't very much left of it.
The Papal tree was used as a religious symbol. They worshipped Pasupathi (Siva) and Mother Goddess Mother Goddess represented fertility. There are no temple structures among the remains. The Indus people believed in life after death. They buried their dead in huge earthen pots along with food and ornaments. The articles used by them in then’ daily life were also kept in those pots.
By around 2000 BC, though, the Harappan civilization had collapsed. We don't know what caused this collapse. Most people think the most likely reason is that the warming trend continued until there wasn't enough water even in the Indus river valley to support these cities and the farmers who fed them. Some people probably starved to death, while others moved up into the hills, where it was cooler and some rain fell.
But by 1500 BC, the Indus river valley saw an invasion of Indo-Europeans, like similar invasions in Greece and Italy a little earlier.