Burnt Ancient City in India

Burnt remnants of ancient city found from era of the Mahabharata‏

(Read the article on one page)

In May last year, archaeologists in India unearthed evidence of a 2,500-year-old planned city in Tarighat, Chhattisgarh, complete with water reservoirs, roads, seals and coins, buried 20ft below the ground, in a discovery billed as India’s biggest archaeological find in recent memory. Now at the same site, researchers have found remnants of a “gutted settlement” which had been completely devastated by a huge fire in around the 2 nd century BC, according to a new report in the Deccan Chronicle . The discovery adds to the mystery of the ancient site, as archaeologists try to piece together its ancient past.

Excavations at Tarighat over the last year have revealed that it was a rich trading centre where its residents enjoyed an affluent lifestyle. Female terracotta figurines recovered from the site, indicate that women were fond of different hairstyles and rich costumes. In total, twelve different hair styles were identified among the figurines. In addition, numerous Indo-Greek coins were discovered, along with more than 15 varieties of beads found in large number in almost 2,000 unusual sizes, styles and shapes, which suggests that Chhattisgarh served as a significant bead manufacturing centre. Pendants, ornaments, bangles of gold, silver and copper have also been unearthed from site which had to be placed under supervision of department guards.

Atifacts - India

Some of the artifacts recovered at the site. Photo source .

The archaeological site spreads over five acres and experts now believe that it is one of the earliest urban trading centres in the country. The Tarighat site provides evidence of four continuous cultural sequences including the Gupta period (sixth century AD), Satavahan period (third century AD), Kushan period (1st-2nd century AD) and early history period (1st-2nd century BC).

“These were among the most interesting times in early India,” said Abhijit Dandekar, an archaeologist at the Deccan College, Pune. “It was the end of the period of the 16 mahajanapadas (loosely translated to great kingdoms) when the Mahabharata was supposedly set, and the beginning of the Maurya empire. There’s very little known about urban structures in this period, in regions spanning modern-day Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh.”

The facts surrounding the great fire which destroyed much of the settlement are unknown, but researchers are hoping that further excavation work, which given the extent of the site may take another 5 – 10 years, will help unravel the mystery.

Featured Image: Excavation in progress at Tarighat archaeological site in Chhattisgarh. Credit: Deccon College

By April Holloway


angieblackmon's picture

i've been very interested in the mahabarata for a while now. i'd like to get my hands on a copy and read it! :)

love, light and blessings


Register to become part of our active community, get updates, receive a monthly newsletter, and enjoy the benefits and rewards of our member point system OR just post your comment below as a Guest.

Ancient Technology

All Giza Pyramids in one shot.
Ever since humans could look up to see the sky, we have been amazed by its beauty and untold mysteries. Naturally then, astronomy is often described as the oldest of the sciences, inspiring people for thousands of years.

Our Mission

At Ancient Origins, we believe that one of the most important fields of knowledge we can pursue as human beings is our beginnings. And while some people may seem content with the story as it stands, our view is that there exists countless mysteries, scientific anomalies and surprising artifacts that have yet to be discovered and explained.

The goal of Ancient Origins is to highlight recent archaeological discoveries, peer-reviewed academic research and evidence, as well as offering alternative viewpoints and explanations of science, archaeology, mythology, religion and history around the globe.

We’re the only Pop Archaeology site combining scientific research with out-of-the-box perspectives.

By bringing together top experts and authors, this archaeology website explores lost civilizations, examines sacred writings, tours ancient places, investigates ancient discoveries and questions mysterious happenings. Our open community is dedicated to digging into the origins of our species on planet earth, and question wherever the discoveries might take us. We seek to retell the story of our beginnings. 

Ancient Image Galleries

View from the Castle Gate (Burgtor). (Public Domain)
Door surrounded by roots of Tetrameles nudiflora in the Khmer temple of Ta Phrom, Angkor temple complex, located today in Cambodia. (CC BY-SA 3.0)
Cable car in the Xihai (West Sea) Grand Canyon (CC BY-SA 4.0)
Next article