Meetathal

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Harappa Civilization seal

Meetathal (मीताथल) (Mitathal, Mithathal) is a Jat Village of tahsil Bhiwani, District Bhiwani in State of Haryana. It is a Site of Indus Valley Civilization.

Location

  • It is situated 7K.M from Bhiwani city.

Jat Gotras

Site of Indus Valley Civilization

The nearby archeological site dates to the Indus Valley Civilisation (7,500–2,600 BCE). It was excavated in 1968 by the archaeologist, Suraj Bhan.[1]

Mitathal is situated on the alluvial plain near a channel between the Chautang and the Yamuna Rivers and is 25 to 30 kilometres from the hilly outcrops of Kaliana and Tosham, which are rich in quartzite and meta-volcanic rocks respectively. The site lies approximately 120 kms west-northwest of New Delhi, 10 kms northeast of the district headquarters Bhiwani and 1.5 kms northwest of Mitathal village.


Mitathal is an important site for scholars investigating what Possehl (1992) has called the "Eastern Domain" of the Indus Valley or Harappan Civilization.

Recent studies have provided a fresh glimpse into this ancient settlement and the surrounding region during the later part of what is commonly termed the Mature Harappan period (ca. 2600-1900 B.C) of the Indus Valley Civilization.

Periods:

  • pre-Mature Harappan
  • Mature Harappan
  • Period I -c. 2000-1900 B.C.
  • Period II- c. 1900-1500 B.C.

Prior to excavation conducted by Kurukshetra University in 1968, under the direction of Suraj Bhan (Bhan 1969, 1975), copper artefacts, Indus-style pottery, beads and faience bangles were discovered at Mitathal.

Bhan’s excavations, although small in scale, revealed much about the site and the region. He identified a pre-Mature Harappan phase related to the Kalibangan I. Also he identified an early phase at the site of Harappa, which has been described as a ‘pre-defense’, 'or Kot Diji Phase'. This is also known in Haryana as 'Late Siswal culture'.

This was followed by a continuous sequence going through a Late Harappan phase. Bhan also defined the later Period I and Period II phases as belonging to c. 2000-1900 B.C. and c. 1900-1500 B.C., respectively. Classical phase

The classical phase of the Indus Civilization (Mature Harappan) was indicated at the site by the presence of well-planned mud-brick structures, beads of carnelian, faience, steatite and terracotta, toy-cart wheels, wheeled toys, sling balls, discs with tapering ends, marbles and triangular cakes of terracotta as well as stone objects such as balls, hammer stones, saddle querns and mullers, and cubical stone weights.

The uppermost level (IIB) was designated the “Mitathal” culture (Late Harappan). Some Siswal/ Kalibangan ceramic traditions survived and important finds from this phase include a celt, a parasu or axe, copper harpoon and a copper ring, which are known as Copper Hoards.[2]

Bhan suggested that Indus culture transformed into the Ochre Coloured Pottery culture (OCP) and hinted that the possible genesis of the OCP lay in the Siswal phase (Bhan 1975: 3).

Mitathal’s twin mounds were christened as 1 and 2 by Suraj Bhan. He recorded Mound 1 as being 150 x 130 m in area and 5 m in height, while Mound 2 was 300 x 175 m in area and 3 m above the agricultural fields. The two mounds whose northern periphery was demarcated by a modern irrigation canal (the Dang Minor) were 10 m apart. Recent research (2010)

Recent surveys show that large portions of the mounds have been destroyed due to agricultural activities. Mound 1 has been reduced both in the south and to the north.

On the south, the mound was levelled for nearly 40 metres and a section of nearly 1 metre is exposed. Mound 2 has likewise suffered extensive damage. A huge chunk measuring roughly 50 by 50 metres has been lost on its eastern side just in the past few years. Although this ongoing destruction is lamentable, it has provided a wealth of fresh archaeological materials for surface investigation.[3]


A large number of blue-green faience bangle fragments are found on the site’s surface; most are very fragmentary. Parallels are found for some Bangle types in the Harappa Phase (Period 3) levels at Harappa.[4]

Ash pits and kilns of considerable size were observed on the northwestern and eastern peripheries of the site. One among these was a feature that is suspected to be a series of faience kilns. Their furnace walls exhibit vitrification indicative of extremely high temperature craft activities.

In his discussion of Indus faience production Kenoyer mentions (1994: 37) the discovery of white rocky quartz at the site of Harappa, which might have been the raw material crushed to make the silica powder. It's found along with the kilns. This, and the unusually large numbers of faience objects suggest that Mitathal might have been a major faience production centre.

Other common surface finds were small bits of copper and some copper-alloy objects such as bangle fragments.

Broken pieces and a few complete examples[6] of stone querns and mullers were also abundant. The large majority of these stone artefacts were composed of a reddish-coloured quartzite with distinctive thin black seams.

Harappan Seal: A broken steatite seal of Mature Harappan period was discovered here in 2010. While a Harappan seal was collected previously from the surface of Rakhigarhi, no seal or sealing was found in Mitathal itself.

"The seal recovered is rectangular in shape, trapezoidal in section and inscribed on one side. The surviving portion measures 15.50 x 14.51 mm. The section of the top and bottom suggests that it was, when complete, convex backed with a perforated hole through the width. Seals of this type were used at the site of Harappa only during Period 3C (Meadow and Kenoyer 2001: 27) and this surface is dated to ca. 2100-1900 BC or the later part of what is commonly called the Mature Harappan Phase of the Indus Valley Civilization."[5]

History

Meetathal is one of the important pre-historic hitherto discovered in northern India. Meetathal came in to limelight for the first time in 1913 when a horade of coins of coins of Samudra Gupta, one of the most illustrious king of Gupta dynasty , was found here in this village.During 1965 to 1967 , beads and copper implements were discovered at Meetathal. This gave it the credit of yielding proto- historical material. Archaeological Survey of India in 1968 undertook the excavation of Meetathal and provided cultural sequence to pre-Harrapan and Late- Harrapan times. Result of excavation has thrown light Copper-Bronze age culture complex of the Indo- Gangetic divide 3rd-2nd millennia B.C.During 1968 excavation Meetathal site has yielded a variety of antiquities such as beads, terracotta, stone, shell, copper, ivory and bone objects.

Scattered Dadri villages in British territory surrendered

Lepel H. Griffin writes:[6] There were 14 villages, Chang, Mithathal; Bamla, Naorangabad, Bhund, Rankouli, Aon, Bas, Ranela, Saifal, Khairari, Jawa, Bijna, and Changrour, belonging to the Dadri territory but scattered in the Rohtak and Jhajjar districts. The first nine of these had been administered by the District Officer of Rohtak, both as regarded the collection of revenue and criminal jurisdiction, for varying periods, one village having been so administered since 1858, and three since 1853. The criminal jurisdiction of the ninth village, Saifal, had, since 1845, been vested in the Deputy Commissioner of Rohtak, though the Nawab of Dadri had collected


[Page-396]

the revenue, and the four last villages, both in fiscal and criminal administration, had been subordinate to the Nawab.

For the convenience of both States, and to preserve a satisfactory boundary, a transfer was proposed of these villages to the British Government, in exchange for others of equal value in the Budhwara and Kanoudh Pargannas of the Jhajjar district. The revenue of the Dadri villages, amounted to Rs. 10,641, and the transferred villages made over to the Raja, viz.: Churkli, Nanda, Tiwali, Siswala, Pachobah Kalan, Pachobah Khurd, and Todhi, were worth Rs. 10,850 a year. The Raja was perfectly satisfied with the transfer, which was approved by the Government of India and carried into effect.

भिवानी क्षेत्र पर कुषाणों तथा अन्य जाटों के शासन का कुछ विशेष ब्यौरा

दिलीपसिंह अहलावत लिखते हैं - भिवानी जिले के मीत्ताथल गांव में की गई खुदाइयों से पता चला कि इस गांव की बनावट,


जाट वीरों का इतिहास: दलीप सिंह अहलावत, पृष्ठान्त-488


वास्तु-कला और शिल्पकला के नमूने पूर्व हड़प्पा सभ्यता से मिलते हैं। प्रथम बार यह स्थान उस समय रोशनी में आया जब 1913 ई० में वहां से समुद्रगुप्त (धारण गोत्र का जाट) सम्राट् के समय के सिक्कों का बड़ा भंडार मिला।

महाभारत से इस बात का प्रमाण मिलता है कि इस जिले में पांडवों का भी पदार्पण हुआ। नकुल ने अपनी दिग्विजय के दौरान यहां के लोगों का मुकाबला किय और उस पर विजय पाकर शासन भी किया। तोशाम की पहाड़ी भी इस बात की साक्षी है कि पांडव इस स्थान से जुड़े रहे। इस पहाड़ी पर सूर्यकुण्ड, व्यासकुण्ड, पाण्डुतीर्थ तथा अन्य कई पवित्रस्थान बने हैं और यह विश्वास किया जाता है कि यह स्थान पाण्डवों के समय में एक तपोभूमि था, जहां साधु लोग घोर तपस्या किया करते थे। यही तोशाम पृथ्वीराज चौहान के समय में दिल्ली का एक हिस्सा भी रहा। महाभारत युद्ध के बाद यह जिला कुरुराज्य (जाटवंश) का एइ हिस्सा बना। कुरुराज्य तीन सीमाओं में बंटा था - 1. कुरुक्षेत्र 2. कुरुदेश 3. कुरुजंगल।

भिवानी क्षेत्र कुरुजंगल का हिस्सा बना और इस क्षेत्र पर पहले राजा परीक्षित और उनके बाद उनके पुत्र जनमेजय ने प्रभावशाली ढ़ंग से शासन किया। कुरु शासन के पतन के साथ इस क्षेत्र में कई जातियां जैसे जाट अहीर, भदनाकस तथा यौधेय (जाटवंश) आकर बस गईं। ये जातियां काफी ताकतवर, सुदृढ़ और शक्तिशाली थीं तथा उनका मुख्य धन्धा खेतीबाड़ी ही रहा।

इस क्षेत्र में मौर्य-मोर (जाटवंश) राजाओं का शासन होने का भी आभास होता है। तोशाम तथा नौरंगाबाद की खुदाई से मिले सिक्कों से पुरातत्त्वज्ञों ने यह पाया है कि यह क्षेत्र मौर्य शासन में व्यापार का केन्द्र रहा। नौरंगाबाद से मिले इण्डो-ग्रीक सिक्कों से इण्डो-ग्रीक के शासन होने के भी चिन्ह मिलते हैं। (गांधार कला को ही ‘इण्डो-ग्रीक कला’ कहा जाता है क्योंकि इनका विषय भारतीय होते हुए भी शैली (ढंग) पूर्णतया यूनानी थी। गांधार जाटवंश है और यहां इस जाटवंश का शासन था)। गाधार शासन पर बाद में कुषाणवंश (जाटवंश) ने अधिकार कर लिया।

कुषाणवंश ने इस भिवानी क्षेत्र पर लगभग 150 वर्षों तक शासन किया। इस बात की पुष्टि कनिष्क और उसके बेटे हुविष्क के उन सिक्कों से होती है जो नौरंगाबाद में मिले।

तत्पश्चात् इस क्षेत्र पर 350 ईस्वी तक यौधेयों (जाटवंश) का राज्य रहा और बाद में गुप्त वंश (धारण गोत्र के जाट) के शक्तिशाली राजा समुद्रगुप्त ने यौधेयों को हराकर अपना शासन स्थापित किया। समुद्रगुप्त के शासन में भी नौरंगाबाद तथा तोशाम महत्त्वपूर्ण स्थान थे। नौरंगाबाद एक राजनैतिक केन्द्र के रूप में महत्त्वपूर्ण था तो तोशाम धार्मिक स्थल के रूप में प्रसिद्ध था। (दैनिक ट्रिब्यून, बुधवार, 11 फरवरी 1987, लेखक रमेश आनन्द)[7]

Further Reading about Meetathal Excavation

Reader kindly go to following mentioned link to enrich your knoweledge about historical importance of Meetathal for detailed reading.

References

  1. Habib, Irfan (14 August 2010). "People's historian". Frontline.
  2. Haryana State Gazeteer
  3. V.N. Prabhakar, Tejas Garge, Randall Law (2010) Mitathal: New Observations based on Surface Reconnaissance and Geologic Provenance Studies. Man and Environment XXXV (1): 54-61, ISSN 0258-0446 academia.edu
  4. Kenoyer 1992: 87, Fig. 3
  5. V.N. Prabhakar, Tejas Garge, Randall Law (2010) Mitathal: New Observations based on Surface Reconnaissance and Geologic Provenance Studies. Man and Environment XXXV (1): 54-61, ISSN 0258-0446 academia.edu
  6. The Rajas of the Punjab by Lepel H. Griffin/The History of the Jhind State,pp.395-396
  7. Jat History Dalip Singh Ahlawat/Chapter V (Page 488)

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