Stone Age in India

Introduction

India civilization is very old. This old civilization has come through evolutions and reached the present stage. We have in hand some very valuable archaeological samples of very ancient Indian civilization from the excavation made in different places of India. Archaeologists have analyzed the specialties of these samples and divided old Indian civilization in three different stages.

Old Stone Age :

 It is very difficult to ascertain the exact time period of this civilization. It was in existence during 4,00,000 B.C. to 2,00,000 B.C.  In Swan valley of Pakistan and Madras (Chennai) of Deccan, some samples of Old Stone Age have been found. Archaeologists have termed them as Swan culture and Madresian culture. In this age, men did not know agriculture or use of fire. They lived in caves or near the rivers. Raw meat of wild animals and fruits were their diet. They used rough stove weapons to protect themselves. Negritos men were more in number at that time.

New Stone Age:

Last of the archaeological division was new Stone Age. Nomadic men started building their own house to live in. Men learned agriculture and started using fire. Their lives improved. But then, the main weapon was made of stone. They knew the art of making such weapons sharper. From 6000 to 2000 B.C. this new Stone Age was in existence. This age’s civilization was discovered in Mehergarh at present in Baluchistan. Besides Mehergarh, in Koeta valley, Kashmir, Andhra and Karnataka samples of new Stone Age have been found. Gordon Child has termed this age as revolution of New Stone age.

After that men learned the use of copper and urban civiliza­tion developed. The period before this age was prehistoric age and this age came to be known as historic age.

Mehergarh Civilization

In Indian subcontinent, Mehergarh was the main centre of new Stone Age. On the banks of Bolan river in Baluchistan, this civilization had a span of 500 acres of land. From this archaeologi­cal centre, we get the idea of development of village in new Stone Age. It has been proved that there was a village during 7000-5000 B.C. The houses were built by sun-dried bricks. It has also been proved that men of this era knew cultivation and animal husbandry. They were hunters. They developed the system of room heating.

Historians think that in the 2nd stage of Mehergarh civiliza­tion, people knew cotton cultivation and copper casting. They also developed potters, wheels and knew the use of burnt bricks for construction of buildings etc.

Later on, very big rooms were constructed. Side by side other developments took place. From this Mehergarh civilization, it has been proved that before the Aryan invasion there was a very high standard of civilization in India.

Also read, Harappan Civilization

By Amit Agarwal