Excavations unearth a new narrative to Megalithic era

Recent discoveries by Dept of Archeology and Museums will provide a new dimension to the narrative of that period in Telangana

Published: 26th June 2017 03:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 26th June 2017 08:40 AM   |  A+A-

Artifacts found in two previous excavations carried out by the Department of Archeology and Museums at Palamakula and Narmetta villages | Sathya Keerthi

Express News Service

HYDERABAD: The recent discoveries by the Department of Archaeology and Museums after the Megalithic excavations in Jangaon and Siddipet districts in Telangana will provide a unique and new dimension to the narrative of that period in the state.

Two simultaneous excavations started in March this year - Narmetta in Jangaon and Palamakula in Siddipet - are not just rare but also have several ‘firsts’ to the department’s credit. The excavation from the Megalithic period - 1500 BC to 500 AD - throw light on the artistic and aesthetic sense of that era. The excavation in Narmetta, that is widely popular for the Kolanupaka temple, a religious destination of the Jains, led to the finding of what is being considered as the biggest capstone ever discovered in South India, according to the Department officials. “It is the biggest and also unique as it was arranged in an anthropomorphic manner where only the body weighs 42 tonnes. Another piece of the capstone is in the form of a human head. This is the first time in the Department’s history that we have unearthed something like this,” informed NR Visalatchy, director.

This apart, over 22 stone pieces, the highest till date, which are predicted to have been dismantled from a neck piece, were also excavated. The consistency of these diamond-shaped pieces in their precise and uniform cutting points to the artistic sense of people of that era, said the director. Fire stands, uniquely heavy bottomed and with holes to let out smoke, were also discovered at Narmetta.

Meanwhile, the discovery of a cist grave, made out of four stone slabs, with another cist within, at Palamakula village reiterates the belief of life after death of the Megalithic people.
Bones and a human skull were found buried in it.  “The careful arrangement of a cist within a cist and bone remnants is also a first time discovery and it signifies that extra care was taken in case of the burial,” pointed the director.

Pre-mended pottery, where broken pots stuck together with some kind of adhesive and buried back again, were also excavated. While all of these belong to the Megalithic period, the Department has sent samples for scientific dating to the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology.

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