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Smithsonian Associates - Entertaining, Informative, Eclectic, Insightful

Lost Civilizations: The Indus

Afternoon Lecture/Seminar

Tuesday, December 7, 2021 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET
Code: 1J0121
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$20 - Member
$25 - Non-Member
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The Pashupati seal

For centuries no one had been aware of the ancient Indus civilization—even Alexander the Great, whose Greek army invaded the valley of the Indus river in the 4th century B.C. Then in 1921, its ruins began to be excavated by British and Indian archaeologists.

Today we know that the Indus civilization was as ancient and extensive as those of Egypt and Mesopotamia. It featured drainage and town planning comparable with those of modern times in cities such as Mohenjo-daro; a sophisticated naval export trade to Mesopotamia; an astonishing absence of weapons and warfare (unlike war-addicted Egypt and Mesopotamia); carnelian jewelry drilled with precision techniques; and an exquisitely beautiful but still-undeciphered writing system inscribed mainly on stone seals. It may also have been the origin of one of the modern world’s leading religions, Hinduism.

Historian and science writer Andrew Robinson introduces this tantalizing ‘lost’ civilization that uniquely combined artistic excellence, technological sophistication, and economic vigor with social egalitarianism, political freedom, and religious moderation.

Robinson is the author of many books on Indian history and culture, including The Indus: Lost Civilizations and India: A Short History, as well as archaeological decipherment, including Cracking the Egyptian Code.

Additional programs in the Lost Civilizations series

October 5 - The Aztecs

October 26 - The Sumerians

November 16 - The Barbarians

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This program is part of our
Smithsonian Associates Streaming series.