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Social Life of Indus Valley Civilization

Updated on December 18, 2019

Indus Valley Statue

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Social Life

Nature of Society- Information about various types of occupations of the people of that time has been obtained from the items found in the excavations at various centers of Indus civilization. On the basis of this information, it can be said that the social status of all people in the Indus society was not the same. The society was divided into several classes. Priests, officials, astrologers, doctor and magicians, these people must be considered to be of high class. Farmers, carpenters, potters, seafarers, shepherds etc. would have been of the lower class.

Family- The building found in the excavations and the plan of living separate families in them suggests that the family was the basic unit of society during the Indus Civilization period. The scholars estimate that the joint family system would have been prevalent even at that time. And in each family, parents, brothers, sisters, sons and daughters lived together. At that time the family had a tradition of patriarchal or matriarchal. Nothing can be said about this. Nevertheless, it is inferred from the sculptures of the women found during the excavation that at that time the place of mother in the family was paramount.

Lady's Place- Due to lack of concrete evidence during the excavation, it is not possible to shed light properly in place of the woman. Nevertheless, scholars have speculated that women were indigenous in the Indus society. She was considered to be the head of the family and nurturer. That main task was to raise children and do their domestic work at home in their spare time.

Way of Life- It is an indication that the Indus people were peaceful and wished to have a prosperous life due to the small amount of weapons found in the excavations. Horses, urns, plates, bowls, baskets, glasses, spoons etc., found in the excavation, the beds, chairs etc. on the postures reveal their wealth. While most of the sculptures have been found naked during the excavation, it can be said from the receipt of cotton clothes that the Indus people wore clothes. The people of the general class certainly wore clothes up to the waist. And the upper class people covered the upper part of the waist with a shawl. Clothing was used according to the seasons.

Food and Drink- The food level of the Indus people must have been of a high level. Wheat, barley, rice, lentils, sesame and miscellaneous fruits and vegetables were their main food items. There is also evidence of their carnivores from the pictures inscribed in the pieces. Probably they used to eat fish, sheep and chicken meat. Used to drink cow, buffalo and goat milk.

Fancier- Indus people were fond of fun. Fishing and hunting were his favorite means of entertainment. On a stamp, some people are shown hunting a Barasinga with arrows. Another stamp shows the man fighting with two legs. He was also interested in sports and exercise. A person is shown exercising on a stamp. The Indus people also used to play chess. His gambling was also an entertainment tool.

Dance and Music- It was the main source of fun for the Indus people. A beautiful idol made of metals was found. Tabla and dhol are the trumpet motifs on some postures. Thus it can be inferred that at that time people would have been very popular with dance and music. At that time, the Indus people were also suitable means to entertain their children. Many toys for children to play have been found in the excavation, in which the toys of whistles, rattles, male-female and animal-birds are the main ones.

Education- The Indus people knew how to read and write and they must also have developed a course of education for their children and youth. The work of writing was done on the main placards. Some placards have also been found in the excavation. These wooden tablets were written with a wooden pen. Based on the majority of toys found in the excavations, scholars estimate that they were used to provide direct knowledge to children.

By certain means of weighing and measuring, it is estimated that children were taught arithmetic. Based on the decimal units of the divisions found in the excavations, it is also estimated that the Indusians were familiar with the decimal system. It is clear from the definite plan of building and city building that students were taught higher principles of geometry.

Art- We have already mentioned the city building and building construction art of Indus civilization. Details of music, dance and hairstyle have also been seen, pottery and sculptures have also been mentioned at the place. Sculptures made of stone and metal are particularly notable in the field of sculpture. An idol of the dancer found in Mohanjodaro is so beautiful that it looks absolutely alive. The dancer appears to be ready to dance in a triangular pose.

Funeral Ceremony- No dead bodies or mausoleum have been found in Mohanjodaro. In Harappan Kalibanga, tombs have been found at some places required. Whose body was kept in the north direction. Keeping the head of the body in the north direction will be the basis of any religious faith. Numerous ornaments have been found on the bodies of the Indus people, from which it can be inferred that they must have wished for happiness and prosperity in the hereafter.

Indus people performed the last rites of dead bodies in three ways. The first complete generalization, in which the body was completely buried in the ground. The second partial settlement, in which the dead bodies were eaten after the animals and birds had eaten. The third fire ceremony, in which the corpse was burnt and its ashes were buried. At the time of excavation, the ashes and bones of dead bodies have been found in the urns.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2019 Devendra Kumar

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    • devendrakumarsharma profile imageAUTHOR

      Devendra Kumar 

      3 months ago from india

      At that time, the Indus people had knowledge of the direction.

    • profile image

      Tushar Gupta 

      3 months ago

      Thanks for this helpful information which you provides us. I want to ask you one things that how did the harappan peoples know the direction to buried the deadbody?

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