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  • Popplestone, Ann
    ... From: Hugh W. Jarvis [mailto:hjarvis@ACSU.BUFFALO.EDU] Sent: Monday, June 05, 2000 12:49 PM To: ANTHRO-L@LISTSERV.ACSU.BUFFALO.EDU Subject: The Deciphered
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      FW: The Deciphered Indus Script - One Recent Title (fwd)

      -----Original Message-----
      From: Hugh W. Jarvis [mailto:hjarvis@...]
      Sent: Monday, June 05, 2000 12:49 PM
      To: ANTHRO-L@...
      Subject: The Deciphered Indus Script - One Recent Title (fwd)

      FYI. Details below. Hugh

      ---------- Forwarded message ----------
      Date: Mon, 05 Jun 2000 16:39:27 +0500
      From: k.k.agencies <kkagen@...>
      Subject: The Deciphered Indus Script - One Recent Title
                                                       E/Editor's Pick: 190

      Here is a grand work, just published, which could be of interest to you.

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      Jha, Natwar,
      The Deciphered Indus Script : Methodology, Readings, Interpretations /
      Natwar Jha and N. S. Rajaram.  1st ed. Delhi, Aditya Prakashan.  2000.
      xxviii, 269 p. ills. 29 cm.
      List Price: $ 63.30     Your Price: $ 57
      ISBN: 8177420151                KK-10943


      The Indus Valley Civilization, known also as the Harappan, is one of the
      most important civilizations of antiquity. Ever since its discovery by
      Indian and British archaeologists beginning in 1921, this civilization has
      been extensively studied by archaeologists, historians, anthropologists and
      of course, Indologist. Of particular interest are several thousand seals
      found at these sites containing both writing and images on them. These have
      been objects of intensive study for over seventy years. In spite of this,
      the script has remained undeciphered, and the writing unread. This is a
      major gap in our knowledge of the past though there is no shortage of
      theories that purport to explain the civilization.

      The deadlock has been created by the theory of an Aryan invasion of India
      in the early second millenium BC: the achievements of the Harappan
      Civilization have been attributed to a people called Proto Dravidians who
      never existed, speaking a language that also never existed. The writings
      that they left behind have been sought to be read by imposing this
      non-existent language on these imaginary people inhabiting this very real
      civilization. In the process, the immense body of literature left behind by
      the ancient Indians is sought to be totally divorced from the writings.

      The present volume is devoted to the study of the Indus script and its
      decipherment. It offers a methodology for reading the Indus script by
      combining paleography with ancient literary accounts and Vedic grammar.
      These illustrate the methodology and also help shed new light on the
      Harappans and their connections with the Vedic Civilization. The language
      of the seals is Vedic Sanskrit, with a significant number of them
      containing words and phrases traceable to the ancient Vedic glossary
      Nighantu, compiled from still earlier sources by Yaska. The language is
      less archaic than that of the Rigveda, and corresponds closely to that of
      the later Vedic works like the Sutras and the Upanishads.

      The scope of the work is somewhat broader than what the title may suggest,
      and extends to placing the Harappans in their proper historical context.
      The Harappans, who until now had remained a silent enigma, speak to us
      again, and speak to us in a language and idiom that we can all comprehend
      -- the Vedic. The converse is also true: we now have an archaeological and
      geographic context for the Vedic Aryans. The Harappans belong to the later
      Vedic Age.

      The implications of these findings go beyond the borders of India --
      leading to a possible change in our viewpoint on the origin of civilization
      itself. Since Dholavira, according to Bisht, has shown planned cities
      dating to the fourth millennium, the Vedic Civilization of the Sarasvati
      heartland must go back at least to the fifth. Thus, the idea of the birth
      of Civilization in the river valleys of Mesopotamia is no longer tenable.
      The cradle of civilization -- assuming there was such a thing -- can now be
      claimed for the Sarasvati Valley.

        The decipherment and its significance
        Contents of the seals: writings and images
        Scope of the work
        Decipherment and the readings
        Methodology and program

                                    Part 1
                          Steps Towards Decipherment

      1. The Changed Historical Context
      2. Language of the Indus Seals
      3. The Indus Script and Ancient Writing
      4. Indus Seals and the Vedic Literature

                                       Part 2
                             The Deciphered Indus Script

      5. Decipherment I: Basics and Methodology
      6. Decipherment II: Steps towards Interpretation
      7. Meanings and Symbolisms

                                   Part 3
                            Technical Supplements

      8. Readings and References
      9. Readings and Explanations
      10. Comparison with other Ancient Scripts

      Appendix 1: Example of Pre-Harappan Writing?
      Appendix 2: Corrections


      Dr. Natwar Jha studied Vedic literature at Shyama Vidyapeeth, Mandar Ashram
      in Bounsi, Bhagalpur, Bihar. He continued his higher studies in Sanskrit
      literature at Darbhanga University, and obtained a Ph.D. from Bihar
      University at Muzaffarpur. He is one of the world's foremost Vedic scholars
      and palaeographers who has deciphered the 5000 year-old Indus (Harappan)
      script, thereby solving what is widely regarded as the most significant
      technical problem in historical research in our time.

      Dr. N. S. Rajaram was born in Mysore, India in September 1943. He holds a
      B.E. degree in Electrical Engineering from B.M.S. College in Bangalore and
      Ph.D. in Mathematical Sciences from Indiana University in Bloomington,


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