After 1900 BC, it began to decline.
Excavations at the bottom of the Indian ocean has helped climate scientists to find new evidence that the legendary first civilization of the Earth in the valley of the Indus river disappeared due to the sudden change of climate and precipitation patterns. Their findings were published in the journal Climate of the Past.
“History of Indian civilization – a good lesson for all of us. Look at Africa or Syria – people are leaving them because of similar climate change.
In the past, people could cope with such problems, having moved to another place, but what to do for the residents of the southern United States and the coast of Bangladesh, which soon could be submerged in the sea?”, said Libya Josiah (Liviu Giosan) from the Oceanographic Institute in woods hole (USA) the Indus, or Harappan, civilization – one of the three most ancient civilizations, along with ancient Egyptian and Sumerian. It originated about five thousand years ago in the Indus river valley on the border between modern India and Pakistan, and flourished in 2200-1900 years BC.
During this period there was a system of inter-city and “international” trade, planning of urban settlements, sanitation facilities, standardized weights and measures, and the influence of Indian civilization spread throughout the subcontinent.
After 1900 BC, it began to decline, disappearing completely in a few centuries – the ancient cities of the Indians were empty, and their tribes settled in a small village in the foothills of the Himalayas. Many historians and archaeologists attribute its death to climate change in the region, which is due to the weakening of the monsoon was cooler and drier at the beginning of the second Millennium BC.
On the other hand, recent data on the Earth’s climate over the past ten thousand years, show that the climate of the Indian subcontinent was radically changed and in an earlier historical era. This forces scientists to argue about why the Indus civilization disappeared before and how it really affected the drought, the disappearance of rivers and other climatic disasters.
Josiah and his colleagues tried to resolve these disputes, conducting excavations at the site of Mohenjo-Daro, Rakhigarhi and other centers of Indian civilization, and at the bottom of the Indian ocean, in different parts of the coast of Pakistan.
The fact that deposits of shells of plankton, shellfish and other types of sedimentary rocks are a kind of climatic “Chronicles”, which very clearly reflects the changes the Earth’s climate at a time when they were formed.
For example, the proportion of “heavy” and “light” isotopes of oxygen can tell us about the temperature fluctuations on Earth, the concentration of “heavy” carbon – biodiversity and mass extinction, and the proportion of calcium and other metals about the level of acidity and other properties of the oceans.
Using this information, as well as fragments of the DNA of the plankton, the scientists were able to see how much fresh water came into the coastal waters of the ocean, and how changing rainfall during winter and summer.
As shown by these observations, the end of Harappan civilization was not associated with the onset of drought, and the fact that the character of rainfall has changed drastically and winter monsoon was more abundant, and the summer rains began to fall less and less. It is not so much changed the total rainfall, but did the Indus valley almost uninhabitable large groups of people within big cities.
Such changes, in turn, was related to the fact that the climate at that time was yet another “little ice age”, reduce the temperature in all parts of the world. It is cold gradually changed the nature of the movement of winds and currents in the Indian ocean, which was one of the key factors in the disappearance of the first civilizations of Earth, the scientists conclude.
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