Page:Pre-Aryan Tamil Culture.djvu/11

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After describing the specimens of pottery found on the left bank of the Cauvery at the ferry at Lakshmanapuram, six or seven miles above the Narsipur Sangam (in Mysore), Foote remarks, 'the people that made the Lakshmanapuram settlement must have been very advanced to have used so varied a set of crockery.'[1] On the French Rocks, not far from Mysore City, Foote found a chatty with the swastika emblem. In another place he found 'a perforated disc made out of a piece of dark brown pottery which has been well ground round its periphery and has had a hole equally well-drilled through its centre.'[2] Apparently it was a spindle whorl. East of the big tank at Srinivasapur in the Kolar Taluk, several acres of ground are covered with much comminuted earthenware lying in a thin layer. The prevailing colour of the sherds is red but entirely black occurs also and some specimens are brown and grey, but very few of the latter are met with. The vessels were polished, or smooth, or rough, and a great number of them richly decorated with impressed patterns of pinnate or bipinnate fronds combined with linear bands, raised or sunk. Others have fillets of dots or pitlets or trellis work painted on the sides. In hardly any case is a pattern produced in duplicate and there is also great variety in the shapes of the lips of the different vessels as well as in their sizes. The fragments are referable to a considerable number of distinct forms as lotas, vessels with spouts, vessels with three or four legs, chattis, melon-shaped bowls, wide-mouthed bowls, vases, necks and feet of vases, lids and stoppers various in shape, also pottery discs for playing games and perforated discs of uncertain purpose. Half a dozen pieces of broken bangles of chank shell occurred scattered about in the layer of potsherds.'[3]

Early Iron Age Graves

At Ādichchanallūr, two miles west of Srīvaikunṭam in the Tinnevelly District there is 'an inexhaustible field of archæological research of the most valuable description'.[4] The burial site here extends over a hundred acres of land. It is a long piece of high ground on the south bank of the Tāmraparṇi. The site, like all sepulchral sites, is higher than the surrounding country and is rocky or waste land unsuited for cultivation. 'About the centre of the ground some three feet of surface soil is composed of gravel, with decomposed quartz rock below. The rock has been hollowed out for the urns, with a separate cavity for each of them. In this burial ground the objects were found both inside and outside large urns of a pyriform shape. The urns were at an average distance of about six feet apart and at from three to twelve feet or more below the surface. Some were found placed over other ones. An idea of the deposits which exist in the whole area may thus be obtained, as an acre probably holds over a thousand urns. This is the most extensive and important pre-historic burial place as

  1. Foote, op. cit., p. 72.
  2. Ibid., p. 73.
  3. Ibid., p. 75.
  4. All the quotations in this paragraph are from Rea's Catalogue of the Prehistoric Antiquities of the place.