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Ancient metallurgists' repertoire: Sarasvati smithy

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  • Srinivasan Kalyanaraman
    Ancient metallurgists repertoire; recurring messages on tablets using glyphs Mirrored at: http://sarasvatismithy.blogspot.com/ The suite of Sarasvati
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 1, 2005
      Ancient metallurgists' repertoire; recurring messages on tablets using glyphs

      Mirrored at: http://sarasvatismithy.blogspot.com/

      The suite of Sarasvati hieroglyphs relate to smithy or artisans' workshops.

      At least four or five tablets are seen to contain repetitive pictorial
      glyphs on molded tablets. The following are good examples from Harappa
      discovered during the excavations between 1996 to 2000 by Kenoyer and
      Meadow. The glyphs are:

      1. A buffalo
      2. Looking backwards
      3. A tiger
      4. A lizard
      5. A tree
      6. A person (woman?) seated on the branch of a tree
      7. A person kicking the buffalo on its head and
      8. spearing the animal with his upraised arm
      9. A seated person in a yogic posture with a horned head-dress
      10. A woman holding back two jackals rearing on their hindlegs
      11. An elephant
      12. A knave of a six-spoked wheel

      Homonyms which depict the glyph and its rebus substantive related to
      metals (copper, iron, pancaloha – alloy of five metals, molten cast)
      and furnaces (furnace, goldsmith's portable furnace), smithy or
      blacksmith's workshop or mint or artisan's workshop are as follows;
      the general appearance of animals on glyphs is related to pasaramu 'an
      animal'; rebus: pasra 'smithy':

      buffalo: homa = bison (Ko.); soma = electrum (Skt.); hom = gold (Ka.)

      look backwards: krammar-a = to turn, return; krammar-incu = to turn or
      send back (Te.) kamar = blacksmith (Santali) kamma_rsa_le =
      blacksmith's workshop (Ka.)

      lizard: kuduru d.okka = a kind of lizard (Pa.)(DEDR 1712) kuduru = a
      goldsmith's portable furnace (Te.) [kakr.a = common lizard (Santali);
      kan:gar= large brazier (K.)]

      tree: kut.i = tree (Te.); kut.hi = furnace (Santali)

      tiger, pair, woman: kol = metal; pancaloha (Ta.) kol = tiger (Santali)
      ko_la = woman (Nahali) kol = a pair (planets) (Ta.) sagal.a = pair
      (Ka.) ; saghad.i_ = furnace (G.) kolsa = to kick the foot forward
      (Santali) kola = killing (Te.) ib = two (Ka.); ib = iron (Santali)

      yogic posture: kamad.ha = person in penance (G.) kammat.a-ku_t.am =
      mint (coiner, i.e. seal-maker) workshop (Ta.)

      mer.go = with horns twisted back (Santali) mlecchamukha = copper
      (Skt.) melukka (Pali) ko_d.u = horns (Ta.); kod. = artisan's workshop
      (Kuwi)

      spy: eraka = any metal infusion (Ka.Tu.) heraka = spy (Skt.); eraka
      (G.) er-aka = upper arm (Te.) era = female (Santali)

      elephant: ibha = elephant (Skt.) ib = iron (Santali)

      knave of spoked wheel: erako = nave; erako = molten cast (Tu.)

      pasaramu = an animal (Te.); pasra = smithy (Santali.Mundari)
      http://www.harappa.com/indus5/page_440.html Slide 440. Figure 440.
      Indus narrative tablet. Although neither of these specific molded
      terracotta tablet pieces comes from Trench 11, four less well
      preserved examples from the same mold(s) were found in debris outside
      of the perimeter wall in that area, clearly establishing a second half
      of Period 3B date for these tablets. Note the rear of the buffalo and
      the front of the gharial in the left tablet which overlaps with the
      iconography of the right tablet, although in this case they do not
      seem to come from the same mold. (See also Images 89 and 90.
      http://www.harappa.com/indus/slideindex.html Slide 89. Figure 89.
      Molded tablet. Plano convex molded tablet showing an individual
      spearing a water buffalo with one foot pressing the head down and one
      arm holding the tip of a horn. A gharial is depicted above the
      sacrifice scene and a figure seated in yogic position, wearing a
      horned headdress, looks on. The horned headdress has a branch with
      three prongs or leaves emerging from the center.

      O n the reverse (90), a female deity is battling two tigers and
      standing above an elephant. A single Indus script depicting a spoked
      wheel is above the head of the deity.

      Material: terra cotta
      Dimensions: 3.91 length, 1.5 to 1.62 cm width
      Harappa, Lot 4651-01
      Harappa Museum, H95-2486
      Meadow and Kenoyer 1997

      http://www.harappa.com/indus/slideindex.html Slide 90. Figure 90.
      Molded tablet. Plano convex molded tablet showing a female deity
      battling two tigers and standing above an elephant. A single Indus
      script depicting a spoked wheel is above the head of the deity.

      On the reverse (89), an individual is spearing a water buffalo with
      one foot pressing the head down and one arm holding the tip of a horn.
      A gharial [crocodile] is depicted above the sacrifice scene and a
      figure seated in yogic position, wearing a horned headdress, looks on.
      The horned headdress has a branch with three prongs or leaves emerging
      from the center.

      Material: terra cotta
      Dimensions: 3.91 length, 1.5 to 1.62 cm width
      Harappa, Lot 4651-01
      Harappa Museum, H95-2486
      Meadow and Kenoyer 1997

      The cultural continuity of Sarasvati civilization is emphatic in
      Bharat which is consistent with the code of Sarasvati hieroglyphs
      which uses homonyms from the languages of Bharat in a linguistic area
      circa 5300 years Before Present (when the first inscription was
      created at Harappa). One example underscored by Kenoyer relates to the
      hindu tradition of wearing sindhur in the parting of the hair.
      Nausharo: female figurine. Period 1B, 2800 – 2600 BCE. 11.6 x 30.9
      cm.[After Fig. 2.19, Kenoyer, 1998]. Hair is painted black and parted
      in the middle of the forehead, with traces of red pigment in the
      part.This form of ornamentation may be the origin of the later Hindu
      tradition where a married woman wears a streak of vermilion or
      powdered cinnabar (sindur ) in the part of her hair. Choker and
      pendant necklace are also painted with red pigment, possibly
      http://www.hindunet.org/saraswati/hindu1.pdf Page 10. The find of the
      figurine is by Jarrige. BB Lal also attests to this evidence of
      terracotta female figurine from Nausharo as an emphatic marker of
      continuity of culture from Sarasvati civilization days to present-day
      hindu cultural practices.

      The continuity of the metallurgical tradition from the days of
      Sarasvati civilization in Bharat, and the code of the hieroglyphs
      explain why many glyphs continue to be used on punch-marked metallic
      coins -- the mint-masters continue to show their tools of trade and
      raw materials used in creating wealth for the guild and providing
      metallic and other tools and artefacts for trade by sea-faring
      merchants, s'a_tava_hana (horse-rider caravans led by sanghvi_), for
      example. It is not mere coincidence that bharatiyo in Gujarati means
      'caster of metals'. Bha_ratam Janam ! invoked by Vis'vamitra Gathina
      in R.gveda.

      S. Kalyanaraman
      1 March 2005
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