When the peoples of ancient Mesopotamia and Egypt were developing urban civilizations, they were wrestling with the same chal enges -- food production, the building of cities, political administration, and questions about human life and the universe.
Like the Near East, the earliest Indian civilization centered on a river.
After the decline of civiliza tion, a very different Indian society emerged.
The Indian caste system and the Hindu religion were key features that aided the spread of Buddhism in Indian society into modern times.
When Buddhism and Jainism were founded, Bridgeman Art Library was established and the Aryans developed into Hinduism.
The Mauryan Dynasty emerged in the wake of the Greek invasion of north India.
India was politically divided for several centuries after the empire broke up.
Even though India never had a single language and only a periodical government, cultural elements from the ancient period, such as the caste system and the early epics, spread through trade and other contact.
After 185 b.c.e., how did political disunity affect Indian life?
The warm waters of the Indian Ocean juts southward into the subcontinent of India.
In India, the possibilities for both agriculture and communication have always been shaped by geography.
Some regions of the subcontinent are among the driest on the planet.
Most of India is warm during the year.
The monsoon rains come from the Indian Ocean.
The lower reaches of the Himalayas in the northeast are covered by dense forests.
The centers of India's great empires can be found immediately to the south of the river.
The flat terrain of Rajasthan and southeastern Pakistan allowed invaders to sweep into India from the northwest.
The jungle-clad Vindhya Mountains and the dry, hilly Deccan Plateau are south of the great river valleys.
India's long coastlines and predictable winds fostered maritime trade with other countries.
The Neolithic settlement of the Indian subcontinent occurred later than in the Near East, but agriculture followed a similar pattern of development.
The domesticated form of wheat and barley came from the Middle East.
Farmers domesticated animals and learned to make pottery.
Three hundred Harappan cities and many more Valley civilization have been discovered by archaeologists.
It was a literate civilization, like those of Egypt and Mesopotamia, but no one has been able to decipher the hundreds of symbols on stone seals and copper tablets.
The most flourishing period of the civilization was from 2800 to 1800 b.c.e.
The Harappan civilization was marked by a uniformity.
There are figurines of pregnant women found throughout the area.
Harappan cities were centers for crafts and trade and were surrounded by extensive farm land.
Cotton cloth was so abundant that goods were wrapped in it for shipment.
There was a lot of trade.
The cities of Harappa, 400 miles to the north, and Mohenjo-daro, in southern Pakistan, were huge for this pe riod, with populations estimated at 35,000 to 40,000.
The surrounding plain was defended by great citadels that were up to 50 feet high.
The cit ies were built before being settled.
Granaries held food.
Many of the houses were two stories tall.
The iron age is well preserved.
Persians don't want to be collected and are likely to use it asfertilizer on Valley and Kashmir fields.
The founding of Buddhism and the Sanitation system.
The city of Harappan was built with fired mud brick.
The drain pipes were installed to carry away waste.
A Mahayana small ceramic figurine shows a woman with six necklaces.
In Egypt, agriculture was aided by a long, hot growing season and constant sunshine.
The political, intellectual, and religious life of the Harappan people are largely unknown because their written language has not been deciphered.
There was a political structure with the authority to organize city planning and facilitate trade, but we don't know if there were hereditary kings.
There are clear differences between Harappan and Sumerian civilization.
The Harappan script was incised on clay tablets and seals, but it has no connection to the Sumerian script, and the artistic style of the Harappan seals is distinct.
Many cities were abandoned and others only had a small population.
There are many explanations for the decline of Harappan.
The arrival of powerful invaders cannot be blamed for the decline.
It was internal.
A shift in the course of the river could be the result of an earthquake.