Indian Science Seen Through Archaeology

Archaeological findings throw light on many scientific developments of India. Presented here are a few such findings.

1. Wedge shaped stone blocks excavated from Dholavira site Dated: ~2600 BCE. The  Wedge shaped stone blocks were most likely used in circular structure may be lining walls of well or arched gate structure. 


2. A Terracotta fragment with fabric impression, Harappa.

Remains of textile found at Mehrgarh dates back to 6th millenium BCE. By 4th millenium BCE India exported cotton to as far as Jordan as archaeological remains from Dhuweila (Jordan) suggest.



3. A "Sheffield of Ancient India: Chanhu-Daro's Metal Working Industry photos of copper knives, spears , razors, axes and dishes.

 Note the fluted vase (left, second row) is one of the finest metal work of ancient India. Published in The Illustrated London News (1936)


4. Stonemasonry work from Dholavira Dated: ~3-2 millenium BCE.  Note the  excellently cut and polished pieces of stone forming base of pillar. Fergusson argued that stonemasonry was introduced in India by Greeks hence he dated every stone structure after ~4 century BCE (Sanchi Stupa etc).

(The actual reason for European historians to place most historical things after 4th millinium BC is belief of adam and eve as first humans and who first arrived on earth ~6000 years ago. This is approved by church and they can't go against it. Everything should be after that)


5. Gold work from Dholavira archeological site.  

Dholavira has yielded 123 thin gold foil, 116 beads, 6 rings and disc. 

 Dated: 3-2nd millenium BCE. They knew controlled heating focused on small region.



6. Polished pillar from Harappa.

 This type of pillar is perhaps only of its kind. Wavy elements stacked one over other forms pillar. History of polished pillars in India dates back to 3-2nd millenium BCE. Excavation at Dholavira also yielded similarly polished pillar elements.


7.  Pillars meet in one dot !!

1212 pillars meet in one dot.

Build by Indian engineers 1740 yrs ago at Rameshwaram Temple.


8.  A well lined with wedge shaped bricks from Harappa, Sindhu-Saraswati valley civilization Dated: ~3rd millenium BCE.

Note wedge shaped bricks stabilized wall. It is very clear that ancient Indians were aware of arch action even back then which involves knowledge of trigonometry.


9. Another well lined with specially moulded trapezoidal bricks, Lothal. Ancient Indians were certainly aware of 'arch action' when external force applied. Here same principle is used. In vertical arch, gravity is perpetual external force. Wells lined with such bricks resist collapse.


10. Model of surgery, Kaushambi Dated: ~2nd century CE or older. The figurine shows the dissected stomach with the intestine peeping out. Probably it served as a model for the students of surgery.


11. Birdman subjugating Snake (Naga), Bronze, BMAC (Bactria - Margiana Archeological Complex) Northern Afganistan, 2000-1500 BCE. This bronze sculpture resembles most to typical Indian Garuna-Naga theme.


12. A very interesting artifact from Kaushambi dating back to 2000 BCE. Here goddess is depicted flanked by two Brahman bulls. Her hands rest on the bulls’ humps. She wears a small circular crown-like fitting atop her head. Seems early depiction of 'Prithvi'?


13. A rare piece of ivory carving depicting 'Chandra' in his chariot with attendants. 

Chariot is pulled by 4 antelopes. Dated: ~2nd century BCE or older (From  West Bengal)


14.  A crystal bowl adorned with decorative pattern carved with utmost fineness, Begram (Now in Afghanistan) Dated: ~1st century CE Begram is famous for ivory carvings of same time period likely imported from North India.



a. Nandi bull carved in ivory, Bagram (Afganistan). Note the tapering columns having Kumbham (pot) as base conforming to Shilpa-Shastra(s). 

b. Elaborately carved ivory depicting two women (probably royal).

Note throne and ornate scrollwork. Dated: ~2nd century CE



16.  Fantastic musical pillars of ancient Nellaiappar Temple, Tirunelveli.

When tapped these pillars produce the sound of classical music notes. These pillars are testimony to ancient Hindu understanding of sound and physical properties of rocks.



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