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Mehrgarh

Mehrgarh

Mehrgarh is among the important Neolithic sites in archeology. This place is located in Baluchistan, Pakistan, on “Kachi Plain”. In South Asia, it is considered the one of the earliest sites with the evidence of farming and herding. On the direction of a French archeologist Jean Francois and Catherine Jarrige, an archeological team discovered this site in 1974. Between 1974 and 1986, excavation was continuously done and then again from 1997 to 2000. This site is located on the west of Indus River valley and near to Bolan Pass. This site has been dated between 7000 BCE to 5500 BCE that is a small farming village.

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People of Mehrgarh used to live in mud brick houses. People of Mehrgarh were mostly indulged in crafts like tanning and flint knapping, metal working and bead production. In South Asia, Mehrgarh is the earliest known center of agriculture. In six mounds, archeological material was found and around 32,000 artifacts were collected. Occupation at Mehrgarh Village is divided in several periods by archeologists.

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Mehrgarh Period I starts from 7000 BCE and ends in 5500 BCE. It was Neolithic and aceramic. For farming, people used plants like wheat and barley and kept animals like sheep, goats and cattle. The residential houses were made of simple mud and most of the buildings had four internal subdivisions. Many goods such as stone and bone tools, baskets, pendants and bangles were found. Along with the simple figuring of women and animal, many ornaments of seashells, lapis lazuli, turquoise, limestone and sand stones have been found here.

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Mehgarh Period II starts from 5500 BCE to 4800 BCE and Mehgarh Period III encompasses 4800 BCE to 3500 BCE and were ceramic Neolithic and later chalcolithic. More advanced techniques and manufacturing activities are evident in these periods. Terracotta figures became more detailed and glazed faience beads were produced. Female figuring was used to paint and decorate with ornaments and had different hairstyles. From terracotta and bone, the first button seals were produced that had geometric design. The advanced technologies of these periods include updraft kilns, copper drills, copper melting crucibles and large pit kilns.

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Periods IV, V and VI are divided between 3500 BCE to 3000 BCE. In the VII period from 2600 BCE to 2000 BCE in favor of settlements in nearby area Nausharo this city Mehrgarh was abandoned by the people and it was the time when Indus Valley Civilization was in the middle of its development.

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Many artifacts as human figurines, pottery and copper items found there show the culture and tradition of the people lived there. Moreover, Mehrgarh is the city, from where the oldest ceramic figurines of South Asia were found.

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