The Mysteries Of The Indus Valley Civilization.

1755 words - 7 pages

The Mysteries Of The Indus Valley Civilization

4,500 years ago in a lush, green valley in the Far East, an ancient civilization was in the midst of creation. The year was 2500 BC; the age of discovery, rulers, and conquest, and no one could have predicted what would become of the little town on the banks of the Indus River over the coming one thousand years. This little town would flourish and become a giant empire, the Indus Valley Civilization, or the Harrapan Civilization as it is sometimes referred to as, one of the greatest civilizations in the history of mankind. And yet in the short time we've excavated their ancient cities and studied their detailed artifacts, we've learned that they've been the founders of many of the world's concepts, such as democracy, and to many of the world's technologies, such as the standardized weight system. However, even with the world's brightest minds and greatest technologies, we have yet to decipher the script of these ancient and mysterious people. Therefore, we can't be sure as to what type of central government drove this amazing civilization, but, using all the information that we do know about them, we can speculate. I intend to prove that a system closely related to our modern democratic system was what these people developed by studying the organization of their cities, discussing the fact that there is no evidence of a central monarch, studying and discussing the many standards whish were evident, and discussing several other theories.

In order to discuss whether or not the civilization was powered by a democratic-like system, we must first examine the cities themselves. Now, if one were to take an aerial picture of any town or city, such as Mohenjo-Daro, one of the twin capitals, one could not help but immediately notice the grid-like layout of the streets and buildings. Much like our modern system of organizing our cities, known as "blocks," this pattern was employed to ensure free-flowing traffic and easy access to any building. Actually, this ancient system is almost identical to its modern cousin. Mohenjo-Daro has even been called a "mini-model of Manhattan" and the "earliest example of town planing." The commercial, governmental, and residential buildings were divided into three clearly separated sections. Throughout the city ran the relatively large main roads, which were about thirty feet wide in most areas and unpaved, and were almost the only route of travel through the city. Off of these main streets by the side of each building were smaller roads, almost alley ways, which led to the doors of the buildings on the side of the building. This design avoided any unnecessary congestion in the roads by diverting people down the side roads, and thus greatly increased the safety of the citizens. The cities most often visited businesses and governmental buildings and the more expensive housing lied directly next to these larger roads, while the other buildings were set back on smaller roads...

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