Brief note on Indus Valley Pottery (Harappan Pottery)

The excavations in the Indus Valley (also called Harappan Civilization) yielded a variety of pottery which is plain and decorated and contain a variety of unglazed and glazed pottery.

The pottery of Indus Valley civilization is an excellent example of ancient glazed pottery. A kiln in which pots were baked was discovered. The different shapes, made beautifully with a perfect craftsmanship supply evidence of the advance techniques known to the Indus Valley potter.

Plain undecorated pottery is more common at Mohenjo-Daro than painted ware. But the well-known painted red and black wares were adorned with black colored designs on red background.

Most popular design is a series of intersecting circles, which has probably not been used by any other ancient civilization. Other designs included tree pattern, the chase board pattern, figures of animals and birds.

The Harappan painted ware was decorated in monochrome. Polychrome pottery though rare was also found in Indus Valley. Small vessels were painted in polychrome, with red, black and green colors applied after baking of the jar. Handles are rare in pottery of Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro and so also spouts.

Thin pottery plaques, rectangular in shape found in Indus Valley. They were probably used as writing tablets, similar to the wooden tablets in current use in North India.

Pottery of ancient Indus cities is not at all primitive but is suggestive of shapes development of artistic creations and advanced techniques.

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