How do archaeologists prove that two settlements belonged to the same civilization?

How do archaeologists prove that two settlements belonged to the same civilization?



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Suppose I found two different settlements named A and B. These settlements are located near the river X. The distance between A and B is so that it would take at least M months of continuous travel to go from A to B.

What are the things I need to look at to prove that the two settlements belongs to the same civilization (say C) ?

If nuclear dating establishes that the two settlements,

(a) existed around the same time. (i.e. range given by nuclear dating merge)

(b) were separated by some time T years. (obviously T > least count of nuclear dating technique)

Kindly answer it in a very general sense so I can understand the basic underlying assumptions.


EDIT Okay, now a much specific question.

How can we say that Mohan-jo-daro, Harappa and Kalibangan belong to same category ? I mean what is the evidence to support this claim?


Several factors will have to come together:

  • They look at patterns in the artifacts. How do they build their houses, make their tools, etc.? When many techniques match, they're assumed to be the same culture. Consider the Beaker Culture. Just one technique could be coincidence, but if many techniques match there seems to be a common culture.
  • They detect patterns in the remains. Burial grounds, middens, and so on. What did they eat?
  • They examine written records, if any. Not just from A and B but also from C and other civilizations D. Of course they have to ask themselves if D knew what it was talking about. Caesar is an important source on Gaul, even if he was a Roman.

In the end it is a judgement call based on the preponderance of evidence, not a clear-cut answer.


This is a very good question, but not easy to answer.

- "Civilization" is a term connected to the idea of an evolutionary progress of societies. It is sometimes still used as a synonym for "culture", but what you are really interested in is the concept of "archaeological cultures".

- Cultures are a classification system of the very beginning of archaeology. The assumption was that similarities in material culture indicate similarity in culture, and "a culture" is the same as "a people" or race. In a very simplified form, entire cultures were often grouped around a single type of pottery or grave, or language. In a more complex form, entire assemblages of finds (found in the same context) are used for these comparisons.

- These days archaeologists recognize cultures as a modern construct, which might or might not correspond to a common cultural identity in the past (which, likewise, is a social construct). What constitutes a culture and which similarities are important for this classification depends on your definitions of "culture".

- The original cultures defined during the 19th/early 20th century are still used, since we did not really come up with anything better. There is an ongoing and heavy debate around this topic.

- Cultures are often divided into chronological periods, i.e. Late, Middle, Early, or A1, B1, B2 and so on. Some differences in the material are related to chronology, while there are still similarities that are sufficient to classify it at the same culture. This too is an archaeological construct which rests on several assumptions and cross-references (and sometimes turns out to be wrong). This means that two settlements can be separated by several hundred years, yet still belong to the same culture. Only when there are very hard breaks in material culture (often connected to assumed migration events), archaeologists declare a culture to have "ended".

- In specific archaeologies all of this can differ greatly, so you will have to look this up for your specific case. I do not know much about Indian archaeology, but from a short literature review it seems like the Indus valley culture was classified around the first major excavation of Harappa. This formed the basis to which all other sites were later compared to. I would say that the criteria are:

  • similarities in material culture, in particular pottery (form and style), figurines and jewellery
  • use of seals with distinct symbols
  • use of the Indus script (possibly a writing script, maybe just signs)
  • use of the same language (linguistic assumption)
  • planned, fairly sophisticated cities, with similar layout
  • long distance trade network
  • similar religious ideas (this seems to be a heavily discussed topic)

Archaeologists of the 19th century were impressed enough by all of this to call the Indus valley culture a "civilisation". I would however not be surprised if there are people who disagree with this classification. There is probably also a discourse about the early work of British archaeologists in occupied India and how they introduced these Western concepts and ideas about culture, civilization, and so on.


Proof: Archaeology Proves the Bible

S o much scientific research today is done under the relatively modern assumption that God does not exist—that science is incompatible with God and with the Bible. Even those scientists who do harbor some belief in God cast those beliefs aside once they enter the office at work.

Is science incompatible with God? Is the Bible really just a handful of made-up stories set against a backdrop of real-life places? You ought to know!

Over the past several years, I have been privileged to participate in the field of archaeology. And I can tell you that this corner of science alone—this unearthing of historical fact—absolutely proves the biblical record. It shows that the Bible can be counted on more than any other history book to shed light on the true events of history.

Of course, this is not the only field of science that proves God’s existence, but it is one that continues to demonstrate the perfect record of the Holy Bible and its authority as a reliable and inspired document.

Let’s examine several examples of how archaeology proves the Bible.

Evidence of Individuals

You have probably heard the names of many of Israel’s and Judah’s biblical kings. Do you know just how many have had their existence proved, independently, through archaeology? These are the names of kings that have turned up in early, original contexts: David, Omri, Ahab, Jehu, Joash, Jeroboam ii , Uzziah, Menahem, Ahaz, Pekah, Hoshea, Hezekiah, Manasseh and Jehoiachin. The existence of these kings has been verified through scientific discovery by the most stringent of analytical standards.

Several years ago, the personal seal impression of King Hezekiah was found during excavations on Jerusalem’s Ophel mound. The tiny stamped clay piece reads: “Belonging to Hezekiah, [son of] Ahaz, king of Judah.” This impressive find is one of many that refer to King Hezekiah. His name also turns up in inscriptions belonging to his arch-nemesis, Assyria’s King Sennacherib.

King David has been a sticking point for critics. They suppose that he was only a mythical king, yet when the Tel Dan Stele, called the “victory stone,” was found in 1993, their skepticism collapsed. The ninth-century b.c . stele inscription contains a phrase that reads: “I killed [Ahaz]yahu son of [Joram kin]g of the house of David.” This was not only a reference to David, but an established kingly line that descended from him. (This inscription also depicted the events of 2 Kings 8, which led to the deaths of kings Ahaziah and Joram.)

The artifact faced intense scrutiny, more than just about any other, in order to ascertain its legitimacy. Its legitimacy was proved. And now we have two further near-certain references to King David: One on the Mesha Stele (a ninth-century b.c. large stone inscription that parallels a biblical story in 2 Kings 3) and the other on an Egyptian Negev inscription (10th century b.c .). Beyond just finding the name of King David, we have also found several constructions that the Bible attributes to him.

These Israelite kings were the contemporaries of many leaders in other regions described accurately in the Bible, likewise verified through archaeology. Among them are the pharaohs Shishak, So, Tirhakah, Necho and Hophra. There are the Syrian kings Hadadezer, Ben-hadad, Hazael and Rezin. Also, the Moabite King Mesha. Assyrian kings Tiglath-Pileser, Shalmaneser, Sargon, Sennacherib and Esarhaddon. Babylonian kings Merodach-Baladan, Nebuchadnezzar, Evil-Merodach and Belshazzar. Persian kings Cyrus, Darius i , Xerxes, Artaxerxes and Darius ii . Not only were these kings described accurately in the Bible, but their accomplishments were also described. That is a lot for a supposedly “fallacious” book to get right.

And it’s not just the kings. Archaeology has shed light on biblical princes such as Jehucal and Gedaliah. There is also evidence of the Prophet Isaiah, the false prophet Balaam and even a tantalizing artifact that may well refer to the Prophet Elisha.

While the ancient titles of kings, princes and prophets are quite clearly understood, the Bible describes some other, unusual ranks. One is governor of the city (Jerusalem). It seems odd this position would even be necessary when there was a king reigning over the city. Nevertheless, the title was confirmed in 2017 during archaeological excavations just outside Jerusalem’s Wailing Wall. A small seal impression was found with the inscription “Belonging to the governor of the city.” The seal dates to the eighth century b.c .—perhaps it even belonged to Joshua, who was governor during the reign of Josiah (2 Kings 23:8).

Then there is the unusual, specific description of the sixth-century b.c . individual named Tatnai: “governor on this side the river” (Ezra 6:13). This man and his office have likewise been confirmed through a number of inscriptions, recorded as “Tattenai, Governor of Across-the-River.” An unusual title—yet extraordinary archaeological corroboration of the biblical account.

Or is it so extraordinary, if the Bible really is a legitimate, factual document?

Evidence of Cities

What about biblical cities: The Bible contains many descriptions of towns and cities where the individuals listed above lived, along with the events that happened there. Just how accurate are these descriptions? Over the last century, archaeology has had much to say.

Remember the walls of Jericho that “came tumbling down”? The remains of those crumbled city walls have been discovered. They litter the base of the ancient site of Jericho, providing remarkable insight into the beginning of Joshua’s conquests. (You can read more about Joshua’s attack against Jericho at watchJerusalem.co.il/30).

The great city of Jerusalem has been known for millennia and documented in many historical sources. But the Bible’s description of the city, and what happened there, has been confirmed repeatedly through archaeology.

There is the famous tunnel of Hezekiah (2 Chronicles 32:3-4, 30 2 Kings 20:20). This impressive tunnel has been found, snaking 1,750 feet deep in the bedrock of Jerusalem. There is the palace of David, a structure that has also been found. Jerusalem’s wall, built by King Solomon (1 Kings 3:1): found. The wall Nehemiah constructed in the fifth century b.c .: found. Along with many other features.

The Bible describes Solomon’s nationwide building projects. 1 Kings 9:15 states that Solomon built “the wall of Jerusalem, and Hazor, and Megiddo, and Gezer.” Uncannily (or is it?), at the sites of Hazor, Megiddo and Gezer, construction has been found dating to Solomon’s period showing exactly the same building patterns. These architectural features are known as “Solomon’s Gates” or “Six-Chambered Gates.” They help confirm that during this early Solomonic period in the 10th century b.c ., there was a strong, centralized government regulating the building programs over the wider region of Israel.

Then there is the Timna mines. This is an amazing biblical site, though not directly mentioned in the Bible. The Timna mines were situated in the southern kingdom of Edom. They are the world’s oldest copper mines. Strangely, during the 10th century b.c ., copper production peaked. Why? The Bible tells us that during that period, Israel’s temple and royal buildings were being built, for which Solomon used immense quantities of copper. Not only that, Scripture reveals that by that time, Israel had conquered and controlled all of Edom (2 Samuel 8:13-14). In 2017, petrified donkey manure discovered at Timna was analyzed. The scientists discovered that the donkeys’ feed had originated from the Jerusalem area! Timna is just one example of a city not even mentioned in the Bible that still proves the accuracy of the biblical record.

The Bible describes many cities that have been found and confirmed through archaeology. Israelite cities such as Samaria, Megiddo, Hazor, Shechem, Dan, Beth Shean, Jericho, Gezer and Shiloh. Judean cities like Jerusalem, Hebron, Lachish and Beersheba. The five Philistine cities of Gath, Ashdod, Ashkelon, Ekron and Gaza. Egyptian cities. Assyrian cities. Babylonian cities. Persian cities. There are literally dozens more biblical cities that have been discovered archaeologically—along with an accurate representation of what happened in them.

Evidence of Civilizations

Zooming out even further, there are the civilizations. And likewise, we find accurate depictions in the Bible of the civilizations extant at the time various events were recorded. There are numerous examples. We will highlight just one.

The Hittite civilization is mentioned often in the Bible. Scripture describes Abraham burying his wife in land purchased from Hittite merchants. The Hittites were allied with the king of Israel in fending off the Syrian Empire. Yet until the 20th century, no evidence of the Hittite civilization had been uncovered. Historians said it probably never existed, and even if it did, it couldn’t have been a very strong regional power.

In 1906, however, an immense, sprawling fortified city found in modern-day Turkey was confirmed to have been the Hittite capital, Hattusha. A royal library of around 10,000 tablets helped prove to archaeologists that these people were indeed the people of the land of Hatti, the kingdom of Kheta in the Egyptian texts, and the Hittites of the Bible. This massive empire controlled what became modern-day Turkey, and its power and influence expanded as far south as Syria and around parts of northern Canaan, just as described in the Bible.

It is one thing for historians to criticize the existence of a biblical figure. It is another for them to dismiss the existence of an entire empire.

Archaeology has confirmed the accuracy of many of the Bible’s descriptions of civilizations, cultures and their customs. Beside the Hittites, there are the Canaanites, Egyptians, Assyrians, Babylonians, Persians, Philistines, Moabites, Edomites, Ammonites, Syrians and more that have been corroborated by archaeology. Again—that is a lot to get right.

It Just Keeps Coming!

The Bible has received more criticism than any history book known to man. Yet no other book is like it: having been written so long ago, by so many different authors, in so many different locations, and being proved accurate time and again. Truly, the Bible is a magnificent historical record, matching perfectly with scientific discoveries. As much as people try to discredit the Bible through science, nothing has proved it false. The skeptics are either proved sorely wrong, or they have merely disproved preconceived misbeliefs about what the Bible really says.

And if some biblical event, place or person hasn’t yet been confirmed through archaeology, just wait! Arguments from “silence”—the absence of evidence—are a classic pitfall of overzealous skeptics. New discoveries are being made constantly. The veracity of the Bible has been—and is still being—dramatically revealed!

Consider what this means for your life. The Bible is true, and you can prove it. It is right about all these historical, geographical and cultural details. This is undeniable evidence that it is also accurate and trustworthy regarding the plans, expectations and commands of its Author, and our Creator.

“All scripture is given by inspiration of God,” says 2 Timothy 3:16, “and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.” Believe that doctrine. Accept that reproof and correction. Apply that instruction in righteousness! You can prove the Bible true. Ought you now to live by it?


Archaeological Theories

As already discussed, archaeology is not simply about digging up past human remains and preserving it for people to enjoy, wonder at and feel a sense of shared identity. Academic archaeology is about interpreting the meaning of these finds, what their users thought about the objects and monuments, how they might have been used, by whom and when. This is especially important for artefacts whose meanings have been lost or where there are no written records to explain their contact.

Antiquarianism

The earliest theoretical stance that antiquarians and archaeologists held was one of supernatural young earth creationism. All findings were expected to fit into this framework. In the middle of the 17 th century, the Archbishop of Armagh James Ussher examined biblical texts extensively and deduced that the Earth was created in 4004BC (17). This biblical dating fueled ideas about the past. There had been theological debate about the age of the Earth until that point, but Ussher finally pinned a date on it that religious thinkers accepted. Most importantly for the study of humanity's past, it was believed that the social structures, hierarchies and human nature were near-identical (18, p118). The well-to-do of Europe's past were essentially treasure hunters, typically looking to prove a right to rule and look for signs of the antiquity of existing class divisions. Biblical historians toured the Holy Land looking for monuments and artefacts to prove the events in the Bible, particularly in the narrative-rich Old Testament.

But what of the mysterious artefacts for which they had no explanation? Extinct creatures such as mammoth, giant birds, and even dinosaurs found on the great plains of North America and Europe were worked into a biblical chronology. They were considered giants and dragons spoken of in the Old Testament books (18, p103). Artefacts we now know as the stone tools of ancient cultures were considered natural phenomena, probably the by-product of storms (18, p54). But a movement was growing and though Charles Darwin is its figurehead, he was not the first to suggest an Old Earth hypothesis.

Culture-Historical Archaeology

The 1860s saw the birth of the new movement. Fueled by Charles Darwin's Evolutionary Theory and Charles Lyell's (18, p92-93) Uniformitarianism (the idea that laws of science are universal) fueled a kind of nationalistic early archaeology. Though deeply flawed in its belief in hierarchies, natural orders, class, race and gender division, it did pave the way for modernism in archaeology. It brought a sense of scientific investigation that did not exist in previous antiquarian-fueled movement (18, p118). It was this movement that first proposed three-age systems that were applied with enthusiasm. These early archaeologists saw biological and cultural evolution as linear and a progress from chaos to perfection. It was believed that all cultures would evolve from barbarism to noble savagery, and finally to civilization (19).

Culture-Historical Archaeology's main contribution to the modern discipline allowed for the concept of migration. The idea that ancient cultures could be categorized into homogeneous groups by geographical locations is sound in principle and it is here that we see the first stirrings of archaeology overlapping with history and the study of past events influencing human culture. Diffusion theory, as it is called, still proposed a harmonious and linear approach to technological and cultural evolution where interdependent groups spread ideas to others for the greater advancement of the whole. It has its uses, but had its critics through its simplistic approach (20).

The model gave birth to several other types of archaeological theory including:

  • Historical Particularism almost the opposite of the linear model - that even neighboring cultures were not fully influencing each other towards a greater whole, that we must consider each cultural evolution in an individualist context.
  • National Archaeology is a natural by-product of the national identity and exceptionalism, the idea of a people being “special”. This attempted (and to a certain degree still does) uses the past to instill a sense of national or regional pride
  • Soviet Archaeology looked at the social aspects of the past, typically from a communistic model. This challenged the individualistic and class-based nature of the earlier model. It was (understandably) popular in the Soviet nations of the early 20 th century and it made its own contribution to later theories

Processual Archaeology (Also Known as New Archaeology)

Perhaps the USA's (21, p57) greatest contribution to archaeological theory, this is one of two major models still applied today. Its proponents often enjoy a great and sometimes furious academic rivalry with the model that followed (Post Processualism). Processual Archaeology began in the late 1950s with two seminal works by American archaeologists who argued that “American archaeology is anthropology, or it is nothing”. That is, the ultimate goals of both archaeology and anthropology are the same - to discover and explain the human past and human society through the examination of different aspects of the human past. It applied far greater scientific rigor than any previous theoretical model attempted.

The main argument of the New Archaeology proponents was that, with the application of a solid scientific method, we may break free from the limitations of the physical remains of the study of the archaeological record and come to understand the lives of the people who interacted with them every day. It was as much about the study of the past of humanity as it was about the material remains that our ancestors left behind. It promotes cultural evolutionism, the idea that we can understand the people of the past through their relics. Most interestingly for academics in other disciplines, this was the first time archaeology began to examine environmental adaptation as an agent for societal change.

The old linear model of natural progression from barbarism and chaos to civilization and order was abandoned. In its place came ideas of functionalism, utility and agency. Early pioneers such as Colin Renfrew, Paul Bahn and Lewis Binford called for better quality of data in archaeology (21, p58). But it would prove to have limitations of its own, some of which would be challenged in the emerging theoretical model of the late 20 th century.

Post-Processualism

Post-modernism grew out of the limitations and (not always unjustified) criticisms of processual archaeology being too positivist (21, p116). Positivism is the demand for quantifiable data and evidence for everything, even that which is not quantifiable or from which it will be difficult to extract evidence. It was largely influenced by post-modernism of the 1970s and its major proponents were the British archaeologists Ian Hodder, Michael Shanks, Christopher Tilley and Daniel Miller. It would give rise to many other movements including experimental archaeology, ethnoarchaeology, and feminist archaeology, all of which are explained in a later section.

Post-Processualism sought to revolutionize and critique the New Archaeology while complementing it (20, p42). It aimed to put humanity back at the experience of archaeology and anthropology through understanding thoughts, actions and feelings, including spirituality, cultural behavior, ethics and morals, and superstition, irrational behavior, group and individual psychology at the heart of research. After all, humans are not mindless drones who always act rationally and have no thoughts beyond merely the pragmatic empiricism does not always apply (22, p122). We know that superstition, imagination and art are core to human intellectual development too.

The argument from processualism is that we cannot ever fully understand thoughts and feelings without physical evidence and that we can only theorize. Further, it challenged the notion that archaeology could come to rational and objective conclusions, untainted by the bias of the individual's culture. In Europe, post-processualism is viewed as in opposition to processualism, while in North America, the perception is that the two movements are complementary or even non-overlapping.

Key to post-processualism is the notion of inherent bias on the part of the archaeologist when he or she is examining an artefact, monument or cultural landscape - one's country of birth, region of birth, religious belief, political affiliation, ethnic identity, sexuality and even age will color one's perception. While post-processualism accuses processualism of being too positivist, processualism equally complains of post-processualism's attempts to quantify the unquantifiable, leaping to conclusions, navel-gazing, and in some cases, abject refusal to draw any sort of conclusions.

Processual Plus

Archaeology is now in a state where it is converging the two models of processualism and post-processualism. The largely science-based empiricism is limiting the largely experiential archaeology focus of post-processualism has its flaws too - largely focusing on the unprovable and sometimes, wishful thinking. That is why in the 21 st century, there is a movement to converge the two interpretation models to create one that looks for empirical evidence while considering aspects of human psychology, group identity, gender and beliefs, cultural transmission, trade and technological adoption. Processual Plus allows for subjective interpretation of scientific data (29) accounting for hard data and applying a perception-based interpretation.


Samacheer Kalvi 6th Social Science Indus Civilisation Textual Evaluation

I. Choose the correct answers:

Question 1.
What metals were know to the people of Indus Civilisation?
(a) Copper, bronze, silver, gold, but not iron
(b) Copper, silver, iron, but not bronze
(c) Copper, gold, iron, but not silver
(d) Copper, silver, iron, but not gold
Answer:
(a) Copper, bronze, silver, gold but not iron

Question 2.
Indus Civilization belonged to ………………..
(a) Old Stone age
(b) Medieval stone age
(c) New Stone age
(d) Metal age
Answer:
(d) Metal age

Question 3.
River valleys are said to be the cradle of civilisation because.
(a) Soil is very fertile
(b) They experience good climate.
(c) They are useful for transportation
(d) Many civilisations flourished on river valleys.
Answer:
(d) Many civilisations flourished on river valleys.

II. Match the statement whit the reason. tick the appropriate answers:

Question 1.
Statement : Harappait civilization is said to be ait urban civilizations,
Reason : It has well planned cities with advanced drainage systems.
(a) Statement and reason are correct.
(b) Statement is wrong.
(c) Statement is true, but the reason is wrong.
(d) Both statement and reason are wrong.
Answer:
(a) Statement and reason are correct.

Question 2.
Statement : Harappan civilisation belongs to Bronze age.
Reason : Harappans did not know the use of iron.
(a) Statement and reason are correct.
(b) Statement is wrong.
(c) Statement is correct, but the reason is wrong.
(d) Both statement and reason are wrong.
Answer:
(a) Statement and reason are correct.

Question 3.
Statement : The engineerring skill of Harpones was remarkable
Reason : Building docks after u careful study Of tides, waves and currents.
(a) Statement and reason are correct.
(b) Statement is wrong.
(c) Statement is correct, but the reason is wrong.
(d) Both statement and reason are wrong.
Answer:
(a) Statement and reason are correct.

Question 4.
Which of the following statements about Mohenjo – Daro is correct?
(a) Gold ornaments were unknown.
(b) Houses were made of burnt bricks.
(c) Implements were made of iron.
(d) Great Bath was made water tight with the layers of natural bitumen
Answer:
(b) and (d)

Question 5.
Cosidering the following statement:
1. Uniformity in layout of town, streets, and brick siz
2. An elaborate and well laid out drainage system
3. Granaries constituted an important part of Harappan Cities
Which of the above statement are correct?
(a) 1&2
(b) 1&3
(c) 2&3
(d) all the three
Answer:
(d) all the three

Question 6.
The odd one
Answer:
Oxen, sheep, buffaloes, pigs, horses

Find out the wrong pair
(b) Citadel – Granaries
(a) ASI John – Marshall
(c) Lothal – dockyard
(d) Harappan civilisation – River Cauvery
Answer:
(d) Harappan civilisation – River Cauvery

  1. ________ is the oldest civilisation.
  2. Archaeological Survey of india was founded by ________
  3. ________ were used to store grains.
  4. Group of people ________ form
  1. Mehergarh is a Neolithic site.
  2. Archaeological Survey of India is responsible for the preservation of cultural monuments
  3. in the country.
  4. Granaries were used to store grains
  5. The earliest form of writings was developed by the Chinese.
  1. Mohenjo Daro – (i) raised platform
  2. Bronze – (ii) red quartz stone
  3. Citade – (iii) alloy
  4. Carnelian – (iv) mound of dead

VI. Answer in the one or two sentences:

Question 1.
What are the uses of metal?
Answer:

  1. Gold and Silver were used to make ornaments.
  2. They used copper and bronze to make weapons and vessels.
  3. Bronze was used to make statues. ( Example: Statue of a dancing girl.)

Question 2.
Make a list of baked and raw food that weat.
Raw food : Fruits and vegetables like apple, carrot, cucumber etc.
Baked food : Bread, Bun, Cake, Cookie, Pudding etc.

Question 3.
Do we have the practice of worshipping animals and trees?
Answer:
Yes, people belonging to some religions worship animals and trees.

Question 4.
River valleys are cradles of civiftatfun, why?
Answer:

  1. River valley had fertile soil. Agriculture grew well in these regions.
  2. Fresh water was available for drinking, Watering livestock and irrigation.
  3. Easy movement of people and goods was possible.

Question 5.
Just because a toy moves it doesn’t mean it’s modern. What did they use instead of batteries?
Answer:
They used wheels.

Question 6.
Dog was the first animal to be tamed. Why?
Answer:
Humans started breeding dogs to help with hunting, herding, standing guard and carrying stuff.

Question 7.
If you were an archaeologist, what will you do?
Answer:
If I were an archaeologist I would go to Adichanallur which is located in our district and do excavation there.

Question 8.
Name any two Indus sites located in the Indian border?
Answer:

Question 9.
In Indus civilisation, which features you like the most? Why?
Answer:

  1. I like the drainage system very much.
  2. Most of the drains were covered with slabs or bricks. Even after nearly 5000 years many of the modern cities don’t have covered drains.
  3. It is said that each house had its own soak pit, which collected all the sediments and allowed only the water to flow into the street drain. I like this system very much.

Question 10.
What instrument Is used nowadays to weigh things?
Answer:
Weighing scale or spring balance is used nowadays to weigh things.

Question 1.
What method is used to explore buried buildings nowadays?
Answer:

  1. To see under the ground, the archaeologists may uSe a magnetic scanner.
  2. The presence and absence of archaeological remains can be detected by Radar and Remote Sensing Method.

Question 2.
Why did the Indus civilization call Bronze age civilization?
Answer:
Indus civilisation is called Bronze age civilisation because it is a historical period characterized by the use of articles made of bronze.

Question 3.
Indus Civilisation is called urban civilisation. Give reason
Answer:
Indus Civilisation is called urban civilisation because

  1. There was well-conceived town planning.
  2. Astonishing masonry and architecture were found.
  3. Priority was given for hygiene and public health.
  4. They used Standardised weights and measures
  5. They had solid agricultural and

Question 4.
Can you point out the special features of their drainage system?
Answer:

  1. The cities had covered drains.
  2. They were covered with slabs or bricks.
  3. There were manholes at regular intervals to clean the drains.
  4. Every house had its own soak pit, which collected all the sediments and allowed only the water to flow into the street drain.

Question 5.
What do you about great the great bath?
Answer:

  1. The great bath was a large, rectangular tank in a courtyard. It may be the earliest example of a waterproof structure.
  2. The bath was lined with bricks, coated with plaster and made watertight using layers of natural bitumen.
  3. There were steps on the north and south leading into the tank.
  4. There were rooms oh three sides.
  5. Water was drawn from the well, located in the courtyard and drained out after use.

Question 6.
How do you know that Indus people traded with other countries?
Answer:

  1. King Naram – sin of Akkadian empire has written about buying jewellery from the land of Melukha which is a region of the Indus valley.
  2. The same types of seals found in Mesopotamia have been also found in the Indus area.
  3. A naval dockyard has been discovered in Lothal in Gujarat. All these things show that Indus people traded with other countries.

VIII. HOTS:
Observe the following features of Indus Civilisation and compare that with the present day.
a. Lamppost
b. Burnt bricks
c. Underground drainage system
d. Weights and measurement
e. Dockyard
Answer:

  1. In Indus Valley archaeologists have discovered lamp posts at intervals. This suggests the existence of street lights.
  2. Today street lighting commonly uses high intensity discharge lamps often HPS—high pressure sodium lamps.

(i) In Harappan Civilization, the houses were built using baked bricks and ’mortar. Sun dried bricks were also used, Most of the bricks were of uniform size. They used the burnt bricks which were strong, hard, durable, resistant to fire and would not dissolve in water.

(ii) Even at present, brick is the most basic and favoured material for common construction through out the world. Nowadays bricks are available in different sizes and shapes. Kiln burnt bricks are used.

(c) Underground drainage system

(i) In Indus Civilization, they had covered drains. The drains were covered with slabs or bricks. Each drain had a gentle slope. Manholes were provided at regular intervals to clear the drain.

(ii) At present our cities and town are so populated and congested that conducting any infrastructural improvement over ground or underground is becoming difficult.

(d) Weights and measurement,

(i) Indus people used standardised weights and measures. They used sticks with marks to measure length.

(ii) In the modem world, we use electronic weighing machine to have accuracy in weighing. Floor scales and Platform scales are used in industries and small scale industries respectively.

(i) A naval dockyard has been discovered in Lothal in Gujarath. It shows the maritime activities of the Indus people.

(ii) In modem days, there are may well developed ports in India. To quote a few, Chennai port, Kandla port, Tuticorin port, Cochin port, Paradip port etc.

Question 2.
Agriculture was one of their occupations. How can you prove this? (with the findings)
Answer:

  1. Agriculture was one of their main occupations. They cultivated wheat, barley, millets, sesame and pulses.
  2. There were granaries to store food grains. A granary has been discovered in a village in the state of Haryana. Ploughs have been unearthed. All these things show that agriculture was one of their occupations.

Question 3.
Many pottery and Its pieces have been discovered from Indus sites. What do you know from that?
Answer:

  1. Pottery was practised using the potter’s wheel. It was well fired.
  2. Potteries were red colour with beautiful designs in black.
  3. The broken pieces of pottery have animal figures and geometric designs on it.
  4. All these reveal the fact that the Indus people had very good artistic skill, colour concept and rich imagination.

Question 4.
A naval dockyard has been discovered in Lothal. What does it convey?
Answer:
A naval dockyard shows the maritime activities of the Indus people. It stands as a proof for their maritime trade.

Question 5.
Can you guess what happened to the Harappans?

  1. By 1800 BCE, the Harappan culture had started declining.
  2. It is assumed that the civilization met with

(a) repeated floods
(b) ecological changes
(c) invasions
(d) natural calamity
(e) climatic changes
(f) deforestation
(g) an epidemic might have disturbed the civilization.

Question 1.
Prepare a scrap book,
(Containing more information about objects collected from Mohenjo-Daro and Harappa.)
Hints :

(i) Mohenjo-Daro Findings – Notable Artefacts- seated and standing figures, copper and stone tools, balance scale and weighs, gold and Jasper jewellery, children Toys. The Dancing girl statue at National Museum, Delhi.

(ii) Harappan findings – seal with yogic picture representing Pashupathi toys, house hold implements, pottery displayed in Harappan gallery, National Museum, Delhi.

Question 2.
You arc a young archaeologist working at a site that was once an Indus city. What will you collect?
Hints:

  1. As a young archaeologist with Indus site, will examine the artefacts found, followed by documenting and preserving them,
  2. Compile the information collected with photos. Then analyses the findings from different angles with the help of

Question 3.
Crossword puzzle.

  1. Director General of ASI
  2. _______ is older than Mohenjo-Daro
  3. This is _______ age civilisation
  4. Each house had a _______


Left to Right

  1. Place used to store grains
  2. A dockyard has been found
  3. _______ is unknown to Indus people
  4. It is used to make water tight.

X. Rapid Fire Quiz (Do it in groups)

Question 1.
Which crop did Indus people use to make clothes?
Answer:
Cotton.

Question 2.
Which was the first Indus city discovered?
Answer:
Harappa.

Question 3.
Where was Indus Civilisation?
Answer:
Banks of River Indus.

Question 4.
Which animal was used to pull carts?
Answer:
OX, Buffalo.

Question 5.
Which metal was unknown to Indus people?
Answer:
Iron.

Question 6.
What was used to make pots?
Answer:
Potter’s wheel.

Question 7.
Which is considered the largest civilisation among four ancient civilisations of the
world?
Answer:
Indus Valley Civilization.

  1. Mark any four Indus sites located within the Indian border.
  2. On the river map of India, colour the places where Indus civilisation spread.
  3. Mark the following places in the given India map:

(a) Mohenjo-Daro
(b) Chanhudaro
(c) Harappa
(d) Mehergarh
(e) Lothal

Samacheer Kalvi 6th Social Science Indus Civilisation In-Text Question

Observe the picture and fill the tabular column.


Samacheer Kalvi 6th Social Science Indus Civilisation Additional Question

I. Choose the correct answer:

Question 1.
Indus valley civilization is great, because
(a) It had advanced sanitation and drainage system.
(b) Repeated floods affected this area.
(c) Indus people maintained a big army.
(d) They did not use iron
Answer:
(a) It had advanced sanitation and drainage system.

Question 2.
The assembly hall was located at ……………
(a) Harappa
(b) Mohenjo – Daro
(c) Lothal
(d) Kalibangan
Answer:
(b) Mohenjo – Daro

II. Match the statement with the Reason. Tick the appropriate answer:

Question 1.
Statement : Harappans knew the art of writing.
Reason : Harappans wrote on seals and pottery.
(a) Statement and Reason are correct
(b) Statement is correct, Reason is wrong.
(c) Statement is wrong, Reason is correct.
(d) Both statement and Resonance wrong
Answer:
(a) Statement and Reason are correct

Question 2.
Statement: The Harappan city had two planned areas.
Reason : Each house was with one or two storeys.
(a) Statement and Reason are correct
(b) Statement and Reason are wrong.
(c) Statement correct Reason wrong.
(d) Statement wrong Teason correct.
Answer:
(a) Statement and Reason are correct

Question 3.
Which one of the following is correct?

  1. Indus valley civilisation is an urban civilisation.
  2. In urban civilisatin people shift from rural areas to urban areas.
  3. They live a settled life.

(a) (i) and (ii) are correct
(b) (ii) and (iii) are correct
(c) (i) and (iii) are correct
(d) (i), (ii), and (iii) are correct
Answer:
(d) (i), (ii), and (iii) are correct

Question 4.
Which Of the following statements about Mohenjodaro is correct.
(a) People led nomadic life.
(b) Hunting was the main occupation
(c) Well planned streets were there
(d) They did not have a script
Answer:
(c) Well planned streets were there

Question 5.
Consider the following statements.

  1. Harappans used carts with spokeless solid wheels.
  2. In Harappan society there were merchants, traders, and artisans.
  3. Cotton fabrics were in common use.

Which of the above statements are correct.
(a) i and ii
(b) ii and iii
(c) i and iii
(d) all the three
Answer:
(d) all the three

Question 6.
Circle the odd one:
(a) Bangles
(b) Armlets
(c) Necklaces
(d) Seals
Answer:
(d) Seals

Question 7.
Find out the wrong pair.
(a) Lothal – Dockyard
(b) Janpath – New Delhi
(c) Mohenjodaro – Mound of dead
(d) Camelian – Pottery
Answer:
(d) Carnelian – Pottery

  1. The archaeologists began to excavate the cities of Harappa and Mohenjodaro in the ________
  2. The word civilisation comes from the ancient Latin word ________
  3. A huge public building found at Mohenjodaro was the ________
  4. Lothal is situated on the banks of a tributary of ________
  5. In Indus civilisation settlements were built on ________
  6. The earliest form of writing was developed by the ________
  1. 1920s
  2. Civis
  3. assembly hall
  4. sabarmathi
  5. elevated
  6. sumerians
  1. The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) was started in 1924.
  2. Indus Civilisation had covered 6 big cities. .
  3. Mesopotamia was modem day Iraq, Kuwait and parts of Syria.
  4. Bitumen is nothing but water-proof Tar

  1. Charles Masson – (i) Neolithic
  2. Mehergarh – (ii) First metal
  3. Radar – (iii) Explorer
  4. Copper – (iv) Remote sensing
  1. Charles Masson – (iii) Explorer
  2. Mehergarh – (i) Neolithic
  3. Radar – (iv) Remote sensing
  4. Copper – (ii) First metal

VI. Answer in or two sentences :

Question 1.
Mention the importance of Rakhigarh village.
Answer:

  1. Rakhigarh is a village in Haryana.
  2. A granary with walls made of mud, bricks, which are still in a good condition, , has been discovered here.

Question 2.
Why did they use burnt bricks for construction?
Answer:
Burnt bricks are strong, hard, durable, to resistant to fire and will not dissolve in water or rain.

Question 3.
Who governed the Indus valley people?
Answer:
Historians believe that there existed a central authority that controlled planning of towns and overseas trade, maintenance of drainage and peace in the city.

Question 4.
Write a few sentences about pot making.
Answer:

  1. The wheel was used in pot making.
  2. Pots were burnt.
  3. They were painted.
  4. They drew figures of animals on the pots.

Question 5.
What is meant by Ziggurat?
Answer:

  1. Ziggurat means temple.
  2. In Mesopotami King Ur Nammu built Ziggurat in honour of the Moon God Sin.

Question 1.
How do archaeologists explore a lost city?
Answer:

  1. Archaeologists study the physical objects such as bricks, stones or bits of broken pottery to ascertain the time that they belong to.
  2. They search the ancient literary sources for references about the place.
  3. They look at the aerial photographs to understand topography.
  4. To see under the ground, they may use a magnetic scanner.

Question 2.
What do you understand by the excavation of granary in Indus Civilization?
Answer:

  1. The granary was a massive building with a solid brick foundation.
  2. They were used to store food grains.
  3. The remains of wheat, barley, millets, sesame and pulses have been found here.
  4. It shows that they had surplus grains.
  5. To safeguard the grains stored with granary, the granary was built on a raised platform.
  6. They should have had a good standard of agriculture.

Question 3.
Was there any leader in Mohenjodaro? Explain.
Answer:

  1. A sculpture of a seated male has been un earthered in a building, with a head band on the forehead and a smaller ornament on the right upper arm.
  2. His hair is carefully combed, and beard finely trimmed.
  3. Two holes beneath the ears suggest that the head ornament might have been attached to the ear.
  4. The left shoulder is covered with a shawl-like garment decorated with designs of flowers and rings.
  5. This shawl pattern is used by people even today in those areas.

Question 1.
Why should we learn about the Indus Valley Civilization?
Answer:


Key Components of Civilization

Civilization describes a complex way of life characterized by urban areas, shared methods of communication, administrative infrastructure, and division of labor.

Arts and Music, Geography, Human Geography, Social Studies, Civics, World History

Photograph by Thomas J. Abercrombie

Cradle of Civilization
The southern part of the modern country of Iraq is called the "Cradle of Civilization." The worlds first cities, writing systems, and large-scale government developed there.

World Powers
The so-called "Group of 7" (G7) is an organization of the seven wealthiest democracies in the world. Seven of the eight countries are part of Western civilization: the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, and Italy. The only G7 member from outside Western civilization is Japan. Japan is usually considered its own civilization.

Representatives from the G7 usually meet once a year, and discuss international issues, including the spread of disease, economic development, terrorism, and climate change.

to desert or leave entirely.

sudden or quickly changing.

to oversee, manage, or be in charge of.

responsibilities and policies of the executive branch of the United States government, led by a president, his or her cabinet, and his or her advisers.

the art and science of cultivating land for growing crops (farming) or raising livestock (ranching).

system of writing in which each symbol ideally represents one sound unit in the spoken language.

organism from whom one is descended.

civilization founded on the Mediterranean Sea, lasting from the 8th century BCE to about 476 CE.

to add or incorporate land into an existing parcel, state, or nation.

person who studies cultures and characteristics of communities and civilizations.

a pipe or passage used for carrying water from a distance.

numeric symbols 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 0, introduced to Western Europe by Arabic scholars in the 12 th century.

style and design of buildings or open spaces.

rectangular reservoir or artificial lake that is a key feature in Khmer architecture.

carving or sculpture in which figures project slightly from a flat background.

statement of money owed for goods or services.

natural or artificial line separating two pieces of land.

time period between the Stone Age and the Iron Age. The Bronze Age lasted between 3000 BCE and 500 BCE.

person who follows the teachings of Siddhartha Gautama (Buddha).

city where a region's government is located.

group of people who travel together for safety and companionship through difficult territory.

program of a nation, state, or other region that counts the population and usually gives its characteristics, such as age and gender.

physical, cultural, or psychological feature of an organism, place, or object.

religion based on the teachings of Jesus of Nazareth.

complex way of life that developed as humans began to develop urban settlements.

division in society based on income and type of employment.

all weather conditions for a given location over a period of time.

gradual changes in all the interconnected weather elements on our planet.

dark, solid fossil fuel mined from the earth.

design consisting of a shield, supporters, crest, and motto, representing an individual, family, state, or organization.

sharing of information and ideas.

to work against someone or something else for an award or acknowledgment.

a disagreement or fight, usually over ideas or procedures.

Spanish explorer or conqueror of Latin America in the 16th century.

maintaining a steady, reliable quality.

one of the seven main land masses on Earth.

to prepare and nurture the land for crops.

sharing and communication between cultures, resulting in the adoption of new or borrowed behaviors.

learned behavior of people, including their languages, belief systems, social structures, institutions, and material goods.

written language developed by Sumerians and common throughout ancient Mesopotamia, made up of different collections of wedge or triangle shapes.

money or other resource that can be used to buy goods and services.

having to do with the social characteristics and statistics of a population.

to become smaller or less important.

harmful condition of a body part or organ.

period of greatly reduced precipitation.

possibly fatal disease with severe, bloody diarrhea.

performing a task with skill and minimal waste.

group of nations, territories or other groups of people controlled by a single, more powerful authority.

the art and science of building, maintaining, moving, and demolishing structures.

data that can be measured, observed, examined, and analyzed to support a conclusion.

study and investigation of unknown places, concepts, or issues.

rare and severe events in the Earth's atmosphere, such as heat waves or powerful cyclones.

spread over a great distance.

the art, science, and business of cultivating the land for growing crops.

to overflow or cover in water or another liquid.

to thrive or be successful.

food that can be prepared, stored, and eaten throughout the year.

region at the intersection of four states in the U.S. Southwest: Utah, Colorado, New Mexico, and Arizona.

time between an organism's birth and the time it reproduces.

system or order of a nation, state, or other political unit.

large island in Western Europe consisting of the countries of England, Scotland, and Wales.

food or other goods sold at a general store.

eight wealthiest nations in the world: the United States, Japan, Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Italy, Russia, and Canada. The European Union is also included in the G8.

period in the year when crops and other plants grow rapidly.

sometimes-lethal viral infection (including dengue, Ebola, and yellow fevers) characterized by fever, chills, and malaise followed by bleeding.

written language using images to represent words.

religion of the Indian subcontinent with many different sub-types, most based around the idea of "daily morality."

confrontational or unfriendly.

the study of the way human communities and systems interact with their environment.

science and methods of keeping clean and healthy.

wages, salary, or amount of money earned.

wages, salary, or amount of money earned.

landmass in south-central Asia carried by the Indian tectonic plate, including the peninsula of India.

structures and facilities necessary for the functioning of a society, such as roads.

cleverness or resourcefulness.

starting and stopping, not consistent.

an attack or move to take possession.

watering land, usually for agriculture, by artificial means.

religion based on the words and philosophy of the prophet Mohammed.

(600-1200) time period when science and art flourished in north Africa and the Middle East, where the Islamic religion is widely practiced.

hard, white substance that forms the teeth or tusks of some animals.

group of people selected to determine facts in a specific case.

knotted cord used by the ancient Incan Empire to record events, census data, and accounts. Also spelled quipu.

type of government with a king or queen as its leader, or the land ruled by that king or queen.

language of ancient Rome and the Roman Empire.

material, ideas, or history passed down or communicated by a person or community from the past.

animals raised for sale and profit.

fertile soil rich in sand, silt, and smaller amounts of clay.

region in North Africa made of five countries: Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, and Mauritania.

having to do with the ocean.

having to do with the Middle Ages (500-1400) in Europe.

land that surrounds the Mediterranean Sea.

person who sells goods and services.

ancient region between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers, today lying mostly in Iraq.

people and culture characterized by incomes between the working class and the wealthy.

to move from one place or activity to another.

to move from one place or activity to another.

movement of a group of people or animals from one place to another.

incorrect or ignorant use of resources.

trench around a castle, filled with water, to prevent or delay attack or invasion.

seasonal change in the direction of the prevailing winds of a region. Monsoon usually refers to the winds of the Indian Ocean and South Asia, which often bring heavy rains.

large structure representing an event, idea, or person.

very large, serious, and important.

legend or traditional story.

an event occurring naturally that has large-scale effects on the environment and people, such as a volcano, earthquake, or hurricane.

black glass formed as lava cools above ground.

settlement or station located in a remote area.

layers of partially decayed organic material found in some wetlands. Peat can be dried and burned as fuel.

carving or drawing on rock.

having a belief in many gods and goddesses.

people and culture characterized by very low income.

settlement with many residents, often an urban area.

branch of life science that studies patterns in the size and age of specific populations.

style of loud, energetic music.

three-dimensional shape with a square base and triangular sides that meet in a point.

to stand for a person, community, or idea.

system of government where power rests in citizens who vote and representatives who stand for those citizens. The United States is a republic.

the act of opposing something.

spoken and written forms of communication that share a root in the Latin language: Spanish, French, Italian, Catalan, Portuguese, and Romanian.

legal system of ancient Rome, mostly associated with the emperor Justinian, and adapted by most of Europe through the 18 th century.

regions with low population density and large amounts of undeveloped land. Also called "the country."

promotion of hygiene, health, and cleanliness.

overflowing of a body of water from its banks, usually predicted by yearly rains or storms.

type of slave forced to work on land owned by others in return for protection.

place of worship or spiritual devotion.

soft, strong fiber spun by some moth larvae, spiders, and other animals.

ancient trade route through Central Asia linking China and the Mediterranean Sea.

top layer of the Earth's surface where plants can grow.

to study, work, or take an interest in one area of a larger field of ideas.

tasty and aromatic plant substances used in cooking.

more than what is needed or wanted.

money or goods citizens provide to government in return for public services such as military protection.

the science of using tools and complex machines to make human life easier or more profitable.

land an animal, human, or government protects from intruders.

to develop and be successful.

person who travels for pleasure.

buying, selling, or exchanging of goods and services.

path followed by merchants or explorers to exchange goods and services.

stream that feeds, or flows, into a larger stream.

ocean waves triggered by an earthquake, volcano, or other movement of the ocean floor.

having to do with city life.

developed, densely populated area where most inhabitants have nonagricultural jobs.

seafaring people and culture native to Scandinavia between the 7th and 12th centuries.

having to do with volcanoes.

an opening in the Earth's crust, through which lava, ash, and gases erupt, and also the cone built by eruptions.

armed conflict between two or more groups of people, usually representing different nations or other political organizations.

transported or carried by water.

civilizations of European origin.

area of land covered by shallow water or saturated by water.

location recognized by the United Nations as important to the cultural or natural heritage of humanity.

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Egypt was a vast kingdom of the ancient world. It was unified around 3100 B.C.E. and lasted as a leading economic and cultural influence throughout North Africa and parts of the Levant until it was conquered by the Macedonians in 332 B.C.E. Today Egyptologists, archaeologists who focus on this ancient civilization, have learned a great deal about the rulers, artifacts, and customs of ancient Egypt. Use these resources to teach your students about the ancient Egyptians.

Ancient Rome

Some say the city of Rome was founded on the Palatine Hill by Romulus, son of Mars, the god of war. Others say that Aeneas and some of his followers escaped the fall of Troy and established the town. Regardless of which of the many myths one prefers, no one can doubt the impact of ancient Rome on western civilization. A people known for their military, political, and social institutions, the ancient Romans conquered vast amounts of land in Europe and northern Africa, built roads and aqueducts, and spread Latin, their language, far and wide. Use these classroom resources to teach middle schoolers about the empire of ancient Rome.

Demographics

Demography is the study of demographics, the social characteristics and statistics of a human population. This study of the size, age structures, and economics of different populations can be used for a variety of purposes. Political candidates use the information to inform targeted campaigns. Scientists employ the data to answer research questions, and marketing teams use it for advertising purposes. Government and business policymakers use it to craft ideas and plan for the future. Help your students understand demographics with these classroom resources.

Agricultural Communities

Agricultural communities developed approximately 10,000 years ago when humans began to domesticate plants and animals. By establishing domesticity, families and larger groups were able to build communities and transition from a nomadic hunter-gatherer lifestyle dependent on foraging and hunting for survival. Select from these resources to teach your students about agricultural communities.

Mesoamerica

The historic region of Mesoamerica comprises the modern day countries of northern Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala, Belize, and central to southern Mexico. For thousands of years, this area was populated by groups such as the Olmec, Zapotec, Maya, Toltec, and Aztec peoples. Cultural traits that define the region include the domestication of maize, beans, avocado, and vanilla, and a common architectural style. Learn more about the rich cultures and lives of these early civilizations.

Ancient Civilization: China

Ancient China is responsible for a rich culture, still evident in modern China. From small farming communities rose dynasties such as the Zhou (1046-256 B.C.E), Qin (221-206 B.C.E), and Ming (1368-1644 C.E.). Each had its own contribution to the region. During the Zhou Dynasty, for example, writing was standardized, iron working refined, and famous thinkers like Confucius and Sun-Tzu lived and shared their philosophies. During the Qin Dynasty, Qin Shi Huang commissioned the Terracotta Army, and the Ming Dynasty refurbished the Great Wall to protect the nation from Mongol attacks. Learn more about the history and rich culture of Ancient China with this curated resource collection.

Hunter-Gatherers

Hunter-gatherer cultures forage or hunt food from their environment. Often nomadic, this was the only way of life for humans until about 12,000 years ago when archaeologic studies show evidence of the emergence of agriculture. Human lifestyles began to change as groups formed permanent settlements and tended crops. There are still a few hunter-gatherer peoples today. Explore the lifestyle of hunter-gatherers in your classroom with these resources.

Ancient Civilizations: South America

Hundreds of years before the arrival of European explorers, the ancient civilizations of South America developed rich and innovative cultures that grew in and amongst the geographic features of their landscape. The most famous of these civilizations is the Incan Empire. Emerging in 1438 C.E., the Incan Empire developed along the west coast of the continent, with the Pacific Ocean forming its western border, and the formidable Andes Mountains to the east, which provided a natural barrier from outsiders. The Inca relied on the Pacific Ocean and major rivers originating in the Amazon Basin for fishing and trade, as well as rich plant and animal life that they supported. The Inca constructed inns, signal towers, roads, and massive forts such as the famous Machu Picchu, the ruins of which continue to teach archaeologists about the Incan Empire. Learn more about the history and rich culture of the Inca and the ancient civilizations of South America with this curated resource collection.

Urbanization

The development of human civilizations was supported by large numbers of people who lived in sparsely-populated rural areas defined by agriculture, fishing, and trade. Over time, as these rural populations grew, cities began to develop. Urban areas are defined by dense populations, the construction of multiple and often large buildings, monuments and other structures, and greater economic dependence on trade rather than agriculture or fishing. Even the ancient Incan, Egyptian, or Chinese civilizations, changed their environment in order to urbanize. Modern urban cities like New York City, Beijing, Dubai, and Paris are bustling centers of business, entertainment, and trade. However, the modifications humans make to their surroundings in order to urbanize such places can impact the environment in negative ways: pollution, disruption of water flow, deforestation, and desertification. Explore the effects of urbanization on the environment and help students explore how human cities impact the world around us with this curated collection of resources.

Rise of Cities

Humans relied on hunting and gathering practices to survive for thousands of years before the development of agriculture. Then arose the &ldquoNeolithic Revolution,&rdquo where crop cultivation and animal domestication began. This more reliable food supply meant humans could stay in one place and gave rise to settled communities and cities. These urban civilizations had larger populations, unique architecture and art, systems of government, different social and economic classes, and a division of labor. Learn more about the rise of cities with these resources.

Mesopotamia

Mesopotamia is thought to be one of the places where early civilization developed. It is a historic region of West Asia within the Tigris-Euphrates river system. In fact, the word Mesopotamia means "between rivers" in Greek. Home to the ancient civilizations of Sumer, Assyria, and Babylonia these peoples are credited with influencing mathematics and astronomy. Use these classroom resources to help your students develop a better understanding of the cradle of civilization.

Silk Road

The silk road was a network of paths connecting civilizations in the East and West that was well traveled for approximately 1,400 years. Merchants on the silk road transported goods and traded at bazaars or caravanserai along the way. They traded goods such as silk, spices, tea, ivory, cotton, wool, precious metals, and ideas. Use these resources to explore this ancient trade route with your students.

Ancient Greece

Ancient Greek politics, philosophy, art and scientific achievements greatly influenced Western civilizations today. One example of their legacy is the Olympic Games. Use the videos, media, reference materials, and other resources in this collection to teach about ancient Greece, its role in modern-day democracy, and civic engagement.

Civilizations

A civilization is a complex human society that may have certain characteristics of cultural and technological development.

Ancient Civilizations: Inca

Test your knowledge of the ancient Inca with this fun Kahoot!

Chimú 101

Once one of the largest cities in the Americas, Chan Chan was the capital city of the ancient Chimú civilization. How long ago did the Chimú people live, and what brought about the fall of their civilization? Learn about the artistry and ingenuity that resulted in countless adobe palaces and how the legacy of the Chimú endures today.


Designed for danger

The first impression of Shimao, even as a partially excavated site in the barren hills above the Tuwei River, is of a city designed to face constant danger. The city was built in a conflict zone, a borderland dominated for thousands of years by warfare between herders of the northern steppe and farmers of the central plains.

To protect themselves from violent rivals, the Shimao elites molded their oblong 20-tiered pyramid on the highest of those hills. The structure, visible from every point of the city, is about half the height of Egypt’s Great Pyramid at Giza, which was built around the same time (2250 B.C.). But its base is four times larger, and the Shimao elites protected themselves further by inhabiting the top tier of the platform, which included a 20-acre palatial complex with its own water reservoir, craft workshops, and, most likely, ritual temples.

Radiating out from Shimao’s central pyramid were miles of inner and outer perimeter walls, an embryonic urban design that has been echoed in Chinese cities through the ages. The walls alone required 125,000 cubic meters of stone, equal in volume to 50 Olympic swimming pools—a huge undertaking in a Neolithic society whose population likely ranged between 10,000 and 20,000. The sheer size of the project leads archaeologists to believe that Shimao commanded the loyalty—and labor—of smaller satellite towns that have recently been discovered in its orbit.

More than 70 stone towns from the same Neolithic era, known as the Longshan period, have now been unearthed in northern Shaanxi province. Ten of them are in the Tuwei river basin, where Shimao is located. “These satellite villages or towns are like moons circling around the Shimao site,” Sun says. “Together they laid a solid social foundation for the early state formation at Shimao.”

Shimao’s fortifications are astonishing not just for their size but also for their ingenuity. The defensive system included barbicans (gates flanked by towers), baffle gates (allowing only one-way entry), and bastions (a projecting part of the wall allowing defensive fire in multiple directions). It also employed a “mamian” (“horse-face”) structure whose angles drew attackers into an area where defenders could pummel them from three sides—a design that would become a staple of Chinese defensive architecture. (Here's why ancient fortifications in Europe had melted stone walls.)

Inside the stone walls, Sun’s team found another unexpected innovation: wooden beams used as reinforcement. Carbon-dated to 2300 B.C., the still-intact cypress beams represented a method of construction that scholars previously thought had only begun in the Han Dynasty—more than 2,000 years later.


Social distancing and isolation

Research at the early urban settlement of K2, part of the Mapungubwe World Heritage site, has thrown significant light on ancient pandemics.

The inhabitants of K2 (which dates back to between AD1000 and AD1200) thrived on crop agriculture, cattle raising, metallurgy, hunting and collecting food from the forest. They had well developed local and regional economies that fed into international networks of exchange with the Indian Ocean rim. Swahili towns of East Africa acted as conduits.

Archaeological work at K2 uncovered an unusually high number of burials (94), 76 of which belonged to infants in the 0-4 age category. This translated into a mortality rate of 5%. The evidence from the site shows that the settlement was abruptly abandoned around the same time as these burials. That means a pandemic prompted the community’s decision to shift to another settlement.

Shifting to another region of Africa, archaeological work at early urban settlements in central and southern Ghana identified the impact of pandemics at places such Akrokrowa (AD950 – 1300) and Asikuma-Odoben-Brakwa in the central district of Ghana.

These settlements, like others in the Birim Valley of southern Ghana, were bounded by intricate systems of trenches and banks of earth. Evidence shows that after a couple of centuries of continuous and stable occupation, settlements were abruptly abandoned. The period of abandonment appears to coincide with the devastation of the Black Death in Europe.

Post-pandemic, houses were not rebuilt nor did any rubbish accumulate from daily activities. Instead, the disrupted communities went to live elsewhere. Because there are no signs of long term effects – in the form of long periods of hardship, deaths or drastic socioeconomic or political changes – archaeologists believe that these communities were able to manage and adapt to the pandemic.

Analysis of archaeological evidence reveals that these ancient African communities adopted various strategies to manage pandemics. These include burning settlements as a disinfectant before either reoccupying them or shifting homesteads to new locations. African indigenous knowledge systems make it clear that burning settlements or forests was an established way of managing diseases.

The layout of settlements was also important. In areas such as Zimbabwe and parts of Mozambique, for instance, settlements were dispersed to house one or two families in a space. This allowed people to stay at a distance from each other – but not too far apart to engage in daily care, support and cooperation. While social coherence was the glue that held society together, social distancing was inbuilt, in a supportive way. Communities knew that outbreaks were unpredictable but possible, so they built their settlements in a dispersed fashion to plan ahead.

These behaviours were also augmented by diversified diets that included fruits, roots, and other things that provided nutrients and strengthened the immune system.


So Much Archaeological Proof!

S o much scientific research today is done under the relatively modern assumption that God does not exist—that science is incompatible with God and with the Bible. And even those scientists who perhaps do harbor some belief in God throw those beliefs to the wind once they enter the office at work.

Is science incompatible with God? Is the Bible really just a handful of made-up stories set against a backdrop of real-life places? You ought to know!

Over the past several years, I have been privileged to participate in the field of archaeology. And I can tell you right now that this corner of science alone—this unearthing of historical fact—absolutely proves the biblical record. It shows that the Bible can be counted on to a greater degree than any other history book to shed light on the true events of history. Of course, this is not the only field of science that continually proves God’s existence—but it is one that continues to demonstrate the perfect record of the Holy Bible and its authority as a reliable and inspired document. Let’s examine several important examples of how archaeology proves the Bible.

Evidence of Individuals

You’ve probably heard the names of many of Israel’s and Judah’s biblical kings. Do you know just how many have had their existence proved—independently—through archaeology? These are the names thus far that have turned up in early, original contexts: kings David, Omri, Ahab, Jehu, Joash, Jeroboam ii , Uzziah, Menahem, Ahaz, Pekah, Hoshea, Hezekiah, Manasseh and Jehoiachin. The existence of these kings has been verified through scientific discovery even by the most stringent of analytical standards.

Several years ago, the personal seal impression of King Hezekiah was found during excavations on Jerusalem’s Ophel mound. The tiny stamped clay piece reads: “Belonging to Hezekiah, [son of] Ahaz, king of Judah.” The impressive find is one of many that refer to King Hezekiah. His name also turns up in inscriptions belonging to his arch-nemesis, Assyria’s King Sennacherib.

King David has been a sticking point for the critics. He was only “supposed” to be a mythical king, yet when the Tel Dan Stele, called the “victory stone,” was found in 1993, all that had to change. The ninth-century b.c . stele inscription contains a phrase that reads: “I killed [Ahaz]yahu son of [Joram kin]g of the house of David.” This was not only a reference to David, but an established kingly line that descended from him. (This inscription also depicted the events of 2 Kings 8, which led to the deaths of kings Ahaziah and Joram.)

The artifact faced intense scrutiny, more than just about any other, in order to ascertain its legitimacy. Yet its legitimacy was proved. And now we have two further near-certain references to King David: One on the Mesha Stele (a ninth-century b.c. large stone inscription that also parallels a biblical story found in 2 Kings 3), and the other on the Egyptian Negev inscription (10th century b.c .). Beyond just finding the name of King David, we have also found several constructions that the Bible attributes to him.

These Israelite kings were the contemporaries of many leaders in other regions described accurately in the Bible, likewise verified through archaeology. Such as the pharaohs Shishak, So, Tirhakah, Necho and Hophra. Such as the Syrian kings Hadadezer, Ben-hadad, Hazael and Rezin. The Moabite King Mesha. Assyrian kings Tiglath-Pileser, Shalmaneser, Sargon, Sennacherib and Esarhaddon. Babylonian kings Merodach-Baladan, Nebuchadnezzar, Evil-Merodach and Belshazzar. Persian kings Cyrus, Darius i , Xerxes, Artaxerxes and Darius ii . Not only were these kings described accurately in the Bible, but their accomplishments were also described! That’s a lot for a supposedly “fallacious” book to get right.

And it’s not just the kings. Archaeology has shed some light on biblical princes, such as Jehucal and Gedaliah. There is also evidence of the Prophet Isaiah, the false prophet Balaam, and even a tantalizing artifact that may well refer to the Prophet Elisha.

What about other biblical positions? Titles of kings, princes and prophets are quite clearly understood. But the Bible describes some other, unusual ranks. One is governor of the city (Jerusalem). Why would this position be necessary when there was a king reigning over the city? Nevertheless, the position was confirmed mere months ago during archaeological excavations just outside Jerusalem’s Wailing Wall. A small seal impression was found with the inscription “Belonging to the governor of the city.” The seal dates to the eighth century b.c .—perhaps it even belonged to Joshua, who was the governor during the reign of Josiah (2 Kings 23:8).

Then there is the unusual, specific description of the sixth-century b.c . individual named Tatnai: “governor on this side the river” (Ezra 6:13). This man and his office have likewise been confirmed through a number of inscriptions, recorded as “Tattenai, Governor of Across-the-River.” An unusual title, yet there is extraordinary corroboration of it through archaeology! Or is it so extraordinary, if the Bible really is a legitimate, factual document?

Evidence of Cities

What about the biblical cities? The Bible contains many descriptions of towns and cities where the individuals listed above lived along with the events that happened there. Just how accurate are these descriptions? Over the last century, archaeology has had much to say!

Remember the walls of Jericho that “came tumbling down”? The remains of those crumbled city walls have been discovered! They litter the base of the ancient site of Jericho, providing some remarkable insight into the start of Joshua’s conquests. You can read more about Joshua’s attack against Jericho here.

The great city of Jerusalem has been known for millennia and documented in many historical sources. But the Bible’s description of the city, and what happened there, has been confirmed to be true repeatedly through archaeology.

There is the famous tunnel of Hezekiah (2 Chronicles 32:3-4, 30 2 Kings 20:20). This impressive tunnel has been found, snaking 1,750 feet, deep below the bedrock of Jerusalem. Then there is the palace of David—a structure that has also been found. Jerusalem’s wall, built by King Solomon (1 Kings 3:1): found. The wall that Nehemiah constructed in the fifth century b.c .: found. Along with many other features.

The Bible describes Solomon’s nationwide building projects. 1 Kings 9:15 states that Solomon built “the wall of Jerusalem, and Hazor, and Megiddo, and Gezer.” Uncanny—or is it?—that at the sites of Hazor, Megiddo and Gezer, construction has been found dating to Solomon’s period, showing exactly the same building patterns. These architectural features are known as “Solomon’s Gates,” or “Six-Chambered Gates.” They help to confirm that during this early Solomonic period in the 10th century b.c ., there was a strong, centralized government emanating throughout the land, controlling the building programs over the wider region of Israel.

Then there’s the Timna mines. This is an amazing biblical site—even though it is not directly mentioned in the Bible. The Timna mines were situated in the southern kingdom of Edom. They are the oldest copper mines in the world. Strangely, during the 10th century b.c ., copper production peaked. Why? The Bible tells us that during that time period, the temple and royal buildings of Israel were being built—for which Solomon used immense quantities of copper. Not only that, the Bible reveals that by that time, Israel itself had conquered and controlled this territory of all Edom (2 Samuel 8:13-14). In 2017, petrified donkey manure discovered at Timna was analyzed. The scientists discovered that the donkeys’ feed had originated from the Jerusalem area! Timna is just one example of a city not even mentioned in the Bible, yet it still proves the accuracy of the biblical record.

The Bible describes many cities that have been found and confirmed through archaeology. Israelite cities such as Samaria, Megiddo, Hazor, Shechem, Dan, Beth Shean, Jericho, Gezer and Shiloh. Judean cities like Jerusalem, Hebron, Lachish and Beersheba. The five Philistine cities of Gath, Ashdod, Ashkelon, Ekron and Gaza. Egyptian cities. Assyrian cities. Babylonian cities. Persian cities. There are literally dozens more biblical cities that have been discovered archaeologically—along with an accurate representation of what happened in them.

Evidence of Civilizations

Then, zooming out even further, there are the civilizations. And likewise, we find accurate representations in the Bible of the civilizations present at the time various events were recorded. There are numerous examples—we’ll just highlight one.

The Hittite civilization is mentioned often in the Bible. Scripture describes Abraham burying his wife in land purchased from Hittite merchants. The Hittites were allied with the king of Israel in fending off the Syrian Empire. Yet until the 20th century, no evidence of the Hittite civilization had been uncovered. Historians said it probably never existed, and that even if it did, it couldn’t have been a very strong regional power.

In 1906, however, an immense, sprawling fortified city found in modern-day Turkey was confirmed to have been the Hittite capital, Hattusha. A Hittite royal library of around 10,000 tablets helped prove to archaeologists that these people were indeed the people of the land of Hatti, the kingdom of Kheta in the Egyptian texts, and the Hittites of the Bible. This massive empire controlled what later became modern-day Turkey, and its power and influence expanded as far south as Syria and around parts of northern Canaan—just as described in the Bible.

It’s one thing for historians to criticize the existence of a biblical figure. It’s another thing for them to dismiss the existence of an entire empire.

Archaeology has revealed many accurate representations of civilizations, cultures and their customs described in the Bible. Alongside the Hittites, there are the Canaanites, Egyptians, Assyrians, Babylonians, Persians, Philistines, Moabites, Edomites, Ammonites, Syrians and more that have been corroborated by archaeology. Again—that’s a lot to get right.

It Just Keeps Coming!

In this modern day, the Bible receives more criticism than any history book known to man. Yet no other book is like it: having been written so long ago, by so many different authors, and in so many different locations, and to this day being proved accurate time and time again. Truly, the Bible is a magnificent historical record, matching perfectly with what has been discovered by science. As much as people may try to discredit the Bible through science, nothing has proved the Bible false. The skeptics are either proved sorely wrong, or have merely disproved preconceived misbeliefs about what the Bible really says.

And if some biblical event, place or person hasn’t yet been confirmed through archaeology—just wait! Arguments from “silence”—the absence of evidence—are a classic pitfall of overzealous skeptics. New discoveries are being made constantly. The veracity of the Bible has been—and is still being—dramatically revealed!


William F. Albright's View: Abraham and the Great Caravans

William F. Albright, formerly a professor at Johns Hopkins University, arrived at the same conclusion as Gordon and Freedman while taking a very different approach.

Albright also dates the years of Abraham very close to what appears in the Bible.

Albright relied on the work of several archaeologists, including Yohanan Aharoni, Nelson Glueck, and Beno Rothenberg, who traced the ancient caravan routes of the Middle East. These caravan routes navigated the deserts of Sinai and the Negev circa 2000-1800 BC.

Not only that, Albright notes, the caravan routes led from Egypt, Sinai, Negev, Jerusalem, Bethel, Shechem, Damascus, Aleppo, Mesopotamia, and Asia Minor, basically most of the sites referenced in Abraham's travels.

Not only that, while still in the region of Ur, Abraham lived in the important commercial center of Haran. Haran actually means "caravan city."

Abraham, therefore, spent most of his life on the main trade routes of the caravans.

Abraham also had a very large entourage. Abraham fielded an army of 318 "retainers" in the battle recorded in Genesis 14 (specifically v. 14). Along with their families, 318 retainers would mean that Abraham's entourage numbered over one thousand people.

It would have been extremely difficult for such a number to survive in the desert, if Abraham was not engaged in a lucrative and wide-ranging caravan trade.

The Bible also confirms Albright's archaeological thesis at Genesis 13:3, "And his caravan journeyed by stages from the south (Negev) to Bethel."

Nelson's New Illustrated Bible Manners and Customs

For the above sections on Abraham's role in society, I am referring to an excellent resource, which you might also enjoy: Nelson's New Illustrated Bible Manners and Customs (by using the link below to purchase you will be helping to support this site)


Ancient DNA Yields Unprecedented Insights into Mysterious Chaco Civilization

The results suggest that a maternal &ldquodynasty&rdquo ruled the society&rsquos greatest mansion for more than 300 years, but concerns over research ethics cast a shadow on the technical achievement

In 1896 archaeologists excavating Pueblo Bonito, a 650-room, multistory brick edifice in northwestern New Mexico&rsquos Chaco Canyon, found the remains of 14 people in a burial crypt. Necklaces, bracelets and other jewelry made up of thousands of turquoise and shell beads accompanied the bones. The artifacts signaled that these individuals were elite members of the ancient Chaco society, one of the most important civilizations in the American Southwest.

The excavations at Pueblo Bonito revealed the splendors of Chaco culture, which flourished between about A.D. 800 and 1250. The ancient Chacoans constructed at least a dozen great houses like Pueblo Bonito in Chaco Canyon during its heyday, and dozens of other Chacoan settlements thrived in what is today the Four Corners region where the borders of New Mexico, Colorado, Arizona and Utah meet. Soon after the excavations ended, archaeologists whisked these human remains off to the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH) in New York City, where most of them have resided ever since.

Every so often researchers take the skulls out of their cardboard storage boxes on the museum&rsquos 5th floor and remove the rest of the bones from wooden drawers lining a nearby hallway, laying them out on long tables to study them. They want to know how these people were related to one another and what this elite group might say about how Chaco society was organized. But they have had only limited clues.

Continuing excavations at Chaco over the years have suggested that most people lived in smaller adobe residences surrounding the great houses, leading the majority of archaeologists to conclude Chaco society was hierarchically structured: Elite groups had dominion over cultural, religious and political life and enjoyed special privileges. Now an analysis of DNA from the Pueblo Bonito remains is providing intimate new details about these elite groups and who belonged to them. In a paper published online this week in Nature Communications researchers report the remains belonged to a single maternal line&mdashwhat the team calls a matrilineal &ldquodynasty&rdquo&mdashthat lasted for centuries. Other scientists hailed the research as a technical tour de force that helps fulfill the promise of ancient DNA to reveal the lives of ancient peoples. But not everyone agrees with the team&rsquos conclusions, and some experts have criticized their decision not to consult with indigenous groups before going ahead with the research.

Archaeologists Douglas Kennett at The Pennsylvania State University, Stephen Plog of the University of Virginia and their colleagues took a multipronged approach to studying the Pueblo Bonito remains. They first obtained direct radiocarbon dates from 11 of the burials, which ranged from between A.D. 800 and 850 for the earliest to about 1130 for the latest. The dates established that the burials spanned a period of some 330 years.

Credit: Roderick Mickens and Adam Watson

Next the team extracted so-called mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) from the remains. Mitochondria are tiny subcellular bodies that serve as the power plants for living cells, and their DNA is only inherited via the mother. The researchers were able to sequence an average of 98 percent of the mtDNA from nine individuals spanning the entire 330-year chronological sequence. Remarkably, all nine sequences were identical, meaning that each generation descended from the same original maternal ancestor.

Finally, in an effort to tease out specific family relationships, the team sequenced nuclear DNA&mdashwhich is inherited from both the mother and father&mdashfrom six of the burials. These sequences suggested that at least two pairs of individuals were very closely related and probably represented a mother&ndashdaughter and grandmother&ndashgrandson relationship.

The authors argue this elite group, in which power and influence flowed from mothers to their children, ruled at Pueblo Bonito from the earliest days of its founding around A.D. 800. Plog says the group&rsquos clout probably stemmed from its control of ritual practices at Pueblo Bonito, as evidence by the discovery of objects such as carved wooden flutes and ceremonial staffs in the burial crypt.

The study provides &ldquoimpressively high resolution&rdquo of these matrilineal family ties, says Johannes Krause, a paleogeneticist at Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History in Germany. Jennifer Raff, an anthropologist at the University of Kansas, agrees. &ldquoPaleogenomics approaches like this one can give us insights into the lives of ancient peoples on a scale never before possible.&rdquo Neither were involved with the study.

The team&rsquos interpretation of the genetic results makes sense to a number of outside researchers. &ldquoThis indicates that hereditary leadership was present at the time of Pueblo Bonito&rsquos founding&rdquo rather than gradually developing later as some earlier studies had suggested, says Jill Neitzel, an archaeologist at the University of Delaware. &ldquoThe data show a group of related women, and some men, who can be argued to have been the persistent leaders of Pueblo Bonito for more than 300 years,&rdquo says Paul Reed, an archaeologist with Tucson, Ariz.&ndashbased Archaeology Southwest. &ldquoThis research provides some of the most important information about Chaco in many decades,&rdquo says Paul Minnis, an anthropologist at the University of Oklahoma. &ldquoWhile most every scholar recognizes that Chaco was centrally organized, the nature of that organization has remained maddeningly opaque.&rdquo

Yet Minnis and others question whether the team is right to call this elite group a dynasty, a term that usually refers to kings and queens who exercise sole rule over vast territories and populations. The Pueblo Bonito group &ldquowas clearly an important one,&rdquo says Barbara Mills, an anthropologist at the University of Arizona in Tucson. &ldquoBut was it the only one?&rdquo In her view the findings do not prove their power and influence stretched beyond Pueblo Bonito itself, to include all of Chaco Canyon or even the wider &ldquoChaco world.&rdquo

Nevertheless, the authors argue their results may resolve another longstanding question. Today&rsquos Pueblo peoples claim, on fairly firm archaeological grounds, to be the direct descendants of the Chacoans so do the Navajo, on whose land Chaco Canyon now sits. In many modern Pueblo groups, including the Hopi and Zuni of Arizona and New Mexico, respectively, descent and inheritance are determined by one&rsquos membership in a maternal clan. (A similar arrangement prevails among Orthodox and some Conservative Jews, for whom Jewish identity depends on having a Jewish mother.) Did they inherit this arrangement from their ancient Chacoan ancestors? Or, as archaeologist John Ware of the Amerind Foundation in Arizona has argued, did early kinship ties in Chaco society give way to rule by so-called &ldquosodalities&rdquo based on shared ritual knowledge and practices, such as priests and brotherhoods, in which case some modern Pueblos may have developed their matrilineal organization independently? Kennett, Plog and their colleagues argue their findings support the hypothesis of direct continuity between Chacoan matrilines and those of many Pueblo groups today.

Even as the work lends new support to the affinities between modern indigenous groups and ancient Chacoans, the researchers&rsquo efforts have landed them in a minefield of research ethics. In 1990 Congress passed the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA), which dictates human remains and other artifacts found on federal or tribal lands must be repatriated to tribal groups if they can successfully establish a direct cultural relationship to them. In some instances such as the famed controversy over the 8,500-year-old Kennewick Man from Washington State, Native Americans and researchers have fought bitterly over who had right of possession.

In the case of the Chaco remains the AMNH decided the NAGPRA did not apply, meaning the researchers were not legally required to get approval from the tribes before conducting research on the remains. In a statement approved by the paper&rsquos 14 authors, the team said that in deciding to not consult the tribes, it relied on the AMNH&rsquos determination that &ldquothe cultural complexity of the region made it impossible to establish a clear ancestor&ndashdescendant relationship with specific modern communities based on existing data.&rdquo The AMNH, in a separate statement, said &ldquothe research had considerable scientific merit with little impact on the artifacts and human remains,&rdquo adding that it had contacted &ldquopotentially affiliated tribes&rdquo during the late 1990s but that &ldquonone came forward to claim affiliation.&rdquo

Credit: Roderick Mickens and Adam Watson

But that decision does not sit well with some critics. &ldquoDespite the fact the authors&rsquo work was technically legal, the ethics here are questionable,&rdquo says Chaco researcher Ruth Van Dyke of Binghamton University in New York State. &ldquoStudies using ancient indigenous DNA should not be done without tribal consultation.&rdquo

Rebecca Tsosie, a law professor of Native American descent at the University of Arizona who specializes in tribal and U.S. Indian law, agrees. &ldquoI am dismayed that there was not an effort to engage contemporary tribal leaders prior to undertaking and publishing this study,&rdquo Tsosie says, adding that the research is a &ldquoprime example&rdquo of &ldquoa study by cultural outsiders to dictate the truth of the history and structure of governance of the cultural insiders, Pueblo Indian nations.&rdquo

Team member George Perry, an ancient DNA expert at Penn State, says that whereas the researchers did not formally consult with tribal leaders nor seek their approval to carry out the study beforehand, he is now &ldquoworking diligently to engage with multiple groups in the Southwest&rdquo to &ldquopresent and discuss the results of the research.&rdquo Getting the blessing of indigenous groups may be key to further research because there are other burials at Pueblo Bonito and other Chacoan sites yet to be studied. Moreover, some archaeologists say, some indigenous people might eventually opt to have their own DNA sequenced to see how closely related they might be to ancient Chacoan ancestors&mdasha step taken by at least one Washington State tribal group that turned out to have a close genetic affiliation with Kennewick Man. In that example the scientific evidence backed up tribal arguments for repatriation of what they call &ldquoThe Ancient One,&rdquo and its remains were reinterred by Northwest tribes on February 18 in a secret location.

Some archaeologists are hoping the new study will be just a first step toward a fuller and more detailed understanding of how the ancient Chacoans lived. &ldquoHow this matriline functioned in the ritual, social and political life of the Chacoans demands more research,&rdquo Minnis says. Until other burials can be studied, &ldquowe cannot answer the question as to whether the Pueblo Bonito matriline was recognized only by that community or by Chaco as a whole.&rdquo