SIVAGANGA: The ancient inhabitants of Keezhadi might have sourced semi-precious stones like agate and carnelian from lands as distant as present-day Maharashtra and Gujarat to make beads, said Deputy Director of Archaeology R Sivanandam.
He said that such beads have been unearthed from the Keezhadi archaeological site. “A terracotta seal was found from the location where weighing stones had been unearthed earlier. The hand-made seal is in the shape of a coin and has two holes on each side. It has the figure of a tortoise on it, and could have been used for stamping. This seal strengthens the assumption that industrial activity existed in Keezhadi in the ancient times,” he said.
Skeletons facing north
The State Archaeology Department, which has been carrying out excavations at Kondagai, Manalur, and Agaram for the first time, has made 29 quadrants in 9 trenches in Kondagai. Forty burial urns, one pit burial, and sixteen surface burials have been identified at the site so far.
“The department does not have any plan to extend the number of trenches in Kondagai, but we will be exploring the trenches already dug more thoroughly,” he said. The DD said that a smoking pipe was unearthed in Agaram.
It has a small container to keep the substance at the top and a hole in the bottom; in its original form, the pipe might have had a tube extending from this hole. The blades and lunates of microlithic tools found in Agaram were made in the area. As for the skeletons unearthed from the site, all had their skulls facing north, he said.
The status report on the ongoing archaeological excavations in the State released by Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami in Chennai on Monday threw more light on the Keezhadi excavations.