House Plans of Harappans


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House Plan of Harappans
    136 CHAPTER-III HOUSE PLAN AND PUBLIC BUILDINGS The Harappan cities were divided into different parts like citadel and lower town. They were also divided into sub-sections. The houses of different types were constructed in all the blocks. In the citadel area residenusor palaces were constructed for rulers. In the lower town the houses for common people were constructed. Some commercial houses or industrial complexes like warehouses; Dockyard, Bead factory, etc. were constructed at different sites. ( a ) GENERAL HOUSE PLAN The Harappan people were master in civil engineering. The  plan of city was based on modern style. They constructed their house on the both sides of the lanes and streets. Generally the doorways of the houses did not open in main streets. Their gateways open in the lanes. The houses in the harappan settlements had two to five rooms, kitchen, bathroom, verandah and courtyard. A few houses had latrine or privy at some sites. The common houses in the Harappan cities were constructed with mud and mud-bricks. In some houses baked  bricks and stones were used by the people. The large sized houses were occupied by the rich people while people of some poor  background lived in dwelling pits. A well protected house was found in DK area at    137 Mohenjodaro. It has four rooms and a courtyard. Its doorway was 4ft. 10ins wide and opens in a lane. A stair case, 3ft. 9ins, was also found which indicates that it was a double storied house. A large room was divided into two rooms by a wall. This wall has a communication door between the two but the dividing wall was not interlocked with the main walls of the rooms. Two rooms of this house were set on their longer edges. 1  On the floor of a room five basin-like depressions were found, which indicate that they were the depressions of large jars. These were constructed with wedge shaped bricks set slantwise in a circle. It is considered that it might be a place of refreshment or a large family house. A hearth was found in south-east corner of the courtyard which indicates that the food was cooked in open area. One house in the First Street has doorway of 3ft. 6ins wide. The doorway opens in a paved floor which was well laid that  protected by a wainscot on three sides. Near the doorway there was an aperture soak pit in the main street. A room of this house was 16ft. 9ins long and 15ft. 2ins wide. In the centre of the floor there was a circular depression which was lined with wedge-shaped bricks placed slantwise. An open pit was found near the north- east corner of this room. This pit was connected with a small covered drain. 2  Another house was found in DK Area which has a very considerable height and the building was again used by the 1  E.J.H. Mackay E.I.H. (1998), Further excavation at MohenJo-Daro,  p. 103. 2   Ibid,  p. 63.    138  people. There was a pavement of burnt bricks (11.65×5.65 ×2.9ins, in size). There was no direct communication in the rooms of the houses which indicates that the building was not used for dwelling. 3  It is considered that the building might be used by the dwellers as store room. A well preserved room was situated in the south-west corner of the large court. The measurement of this room is 11ft. 10ins long by 7ft. 9ins wide. This room was entered from the other room of the building through short doorway of 3ft. wide. 4  The doorway in the building indicates that the well was constructed by the dwellers of the building but the doorway in the lane suggests that the well was for the public use also. At Diamabad the houses were constructed with mud walls, so they were not in preserved condition. One house measures 4m long and 2.6 m broad. The width of the walls of the room was 30cm. In this house a circular hearth of 50cm in diameter was found which indicates a kitchen in this house. To the south of the room there was an open space. The floor of the room was plaster with mud of reddish brown colour. 5  The mud bricks, 32×16×8ins, were used in the construction of this house. The room was used for sleeping by the dwellers. One another house, measuring 6.3m north-south and 6 m east-west was, found at Diamabad. It was a plan of a simple 3  John Mashal (1931), Mohenjodaro and Indus civilization , p. 77 4   Ibid,  p. 55 5  S.A.Sali (1986), Diamabad 1976-79 , p. 88.    139 house. It was also constructed with mud bricks (32×16×8ins). 6  The waste water of the house came out through an aperture and a  private drain took it into large jar placed in the street along the wall. The poor type of construction of the house indicated that the dwellers were belonging to the artisan community. A house was found at chanhudaro which has lanes in two sides, one in eastern and other in southern side. The entrance from the lane on the south was 3ft. 7.5ins wide. The measurement of a room of the house was 7ft. 11ins long by 5ft. 6ins wide. The eastern wall of the room made up of mud bricks in English Bond technique and still stood 4ft. 4ins. high. This room was separated from the other room with a wall, which was not interlocked with the main walls of the room. One doorway in the northern side of this room was 3ft. 2ins. wide. 7  The average height of the walls was 3ft. and all they were well preserved. One smaller room to the south of the verandah was used as kitchen. One house was found at Chanhudaro it was entered from the west. The measurement of a room of this house was 6ft. 10ins long by 5ft. 5ins wide. The mud-bricks of various sizes were used in the construction of this room. The house also had a courtyard. 8  It was an ordinary room and was used for sleeping. A mud brick house near the street 1 was found at Lothal. It has a large verandah, two rooms and a large hall. The fire altars of burnt bricks indicate that the room was used for fire-worship. 6   Ibid,  p. 89 7  E.J.H. Mackay (1976), Excavation at Chanhudaro,  p. 42 8   Ibid,  p. 44
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