CBSE Class 6 History Notes Chapter 3 In the Earliest Cities

Class 6 Notes Social Science History Chapter 3 In the Earliest Cities help you in quick revision of the chapter. Reading these notes will help you to understand the lesson more easily. Once you have understood the chapter, you can easily write the answers of the questions that may come to your exams. Ultimately, our Class 6 NCERT Notes History Chapter 3 will help you to score good marks in the exam.

In the Earliest Cities Class 6 Notes Social Science History Chapter 3

  • Man’s lifestyle changed significantly after he learned the art of using metals.  
  • Copper was the first metal to be used by man. It was followed by bronze which was made by mixing tin and copper.
  • The earliest cities in the Indian subcontinent emerged around 4,700 years in the region drained by Indus and its tributaries in the North-West.  

The Story of Harappa:  

i) British discovered a mound while building Railways.  

ii)  Archaeologists were informed.  

iii) Harappa was the first to be discovered, it became Harappa Civilisation.  

Architectural Features:  

(i) Harappan cities were well-planned.  

(ii) All houses were built of burnt bricks and were of good quality.  

(iii) The most imposing construction of Indus valley was the Great Bath at Mohenjodaro.

(iv) The Harappan settlements had small citadels. It was in citadels that structures were built for special public purposes.  

(v) The largest building excavated at Harappa was the Great Granary.  

(vi) The most striking feature of Harappa was the well-planned drainage system.  

Life of the Harappa People:  

(i) The Harappan people used common food items like wheat and barley. Animal bones found at Harappa include sheep, goat, pig, etc.  

(ii)  Pots of fine clay were made.  

(iii) Many kilns for baking bricks have been discovered.  

(iv) Of the various articles, seals were the most puzzling.  

(v) Necklaces, armlets, finger rings and bangles were worn both by men and women. Both men and women seemed to be fond of ornaments.  


(i) Trading thrived in Harappa.  

(ii) It suggests that long-distance trade existed.  

(iii) Goods coming from outside, including copper from Rajasthan, gold from Karnataka and precious stones from Iran and Afghanistan.  

(iv) Seals of Mesopotamia have been found in Indus.  

(v) Seals of Indus Valley have been found in Mesopotamia.  

Harappan Cities in Gujarat:  

i) Two famous Harappan cities of Gujarat were Dholavira and Lothal.  

ii) Dholavira was full of traces of freshwater and fertile soil.  

iii) Lothal was an important center for making objects out of stone, shell and metal.

Life in the city

Harappan city was a very busy place.

  1. Rulers were the people who planned the construction of special buildings in the city. Rulers sent people to distant lands to get metal, precious stones, and other things that they wanted.
  2. Scribes were the people who knew how to write and help in preparing the seals and perhaps write on other materials that have not survived.
  3. There were men and women, crafts persons who used to make all kinds of things.
  4. Many terracotta toys have been found in Harappan cities, which shows that children must have played with these.

New crafts in the city

  1. Most of the objects that were made and found in Harappan cities were of stone, shell and metal, including copper, bronze, gold and silver.
  2. Copper and bronze were used to make tools, weapons, ornaments and vessels.
  3. Gold and silver were used to make ornaments and vessels.
  4. The Harappans made seals out of stone which were rectangular in shape and have an animal carved on them.
  5. The Harappans also made pots with beautiful black designs
  6. Actual pieces of cloth were found attached to the lid of a silver vase and some copper objects at Mohenjodaro.
  7. Archaeologists have also found spindle whorls, made of terracotta and faience, which were used to spin thread.
  8. Many of the things that were produced at Harappan were probably the work of specialists.

In search of raw materials

Raw materials are substances that are either found naturally or produced by farmers or herders. Raw materials are processed to produce finished goods. The raw materials that the Harappans used were available locally. Whereas many items such as copper, tin, gold, silver and precious stones were brought from distant places.

  1. The Harappans probably got copper from present-day Rajasthan, and from Oman in West Asia.
  2. Tin, which was mixed with copper to produce bronze, had been brought from present-day Afghanistan and Iran.
  3. Gold had been brought from present-day Karnataka, and precious stones from present-day Gujarat, Iran and Afghanistan.

Food for people in the cities

People living in the countryside grew crops and reared animals. The Harappans grew wheat, barley, pulses, peas, rice, sesame, linseed and mustard.

  1. The plough was used to dig the earth for turning the soil and planting seeds.
  2. Water was stored and supplied to the fields when the plants were growing.
  3. Harappans reared cattle, sheep, goat and buffalo. In the dry summer months large herds of animals were probably taken to greater distances in search of grass and water.
  4. People also collected fruits like ber, caught fish and hunted wild animals like the antelope.

The city of Lothal stood beside a tributary of the Sabarmati, in Gujarat, close to the Gulf of Khambat.

  1.  The raw materials such as semi-precious stones were easily available in the city.
  2. There was also a store house in the city.
  3. Workshop for making beads: pieces of stone, half made beads, tools for bead making, and finished beads have all been found here.

The mystery of the end

Around 3900 years ago we find the beginning of a major change. People stopped living in many of the cities. Writing, seals and weights were no longer used. Raw materials brought from long distances became rare. In Mohenjodaro, we find that garbage piled up on the streets, the drainage system broke down, and new, less impressive houses were built, even over the streets.

Why did all this happen?

We are not sure. Some scholars suggest that the rivers dried up. Others suggest that there was deforestation. In some areas there were floods. But none of these reasons can explain the end of all the cities. It appears as if the rulers lost control. Sites in Sind and west Punjab (present-day Pakistan) were abandoned, while many people moved into newer, smaller settlements to the east and the south.

Decline of the Indus Valley Civilisation:  

(i) It lasted from 2500 BC to 1500 BC.  

(ii) Perhaps Indus Valley Civilisation was destroyed by earthquakes, floods or change in the course of the Indus.  

(iii) Some historians say that the invasion of Aryans led to the decline of Harappan civilization.

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