Updated March 4, 2008: Asko Parpola covers the IVC Script & Aryan Invasion Theory debate in his interview in the Hindu newspaper today.
Updated March 3, 2008: Sreedhar said he was not able to access the ODS format spreadsheet. I have uploaded the Excel format as well. Sorry about that.
In this post, we make an attempt to understand the Aryan Invasion Theory further. We already showed in the previous post that it was Aryanization and not Aryan Invasion. Given the nature of this discussion, dates assume critical significance in contrast to the other posts in this series so far.
Happenings in the Central Asian Plate [4000-1700BC]
Domestication of the Horse – It is hard to believe that, what could be termed a routine animal husbandry innovation, the taming of yet another animal – the horse in 4000 BC in the Eurasian Steppes of Ukraine turned out to be a tectonic event in the history of humankind. But what actually made the domestication of the horse a major event, was the tying of the horse to the Chariot in Northern Kazakhastan by the Sintashta and Petrovka culture in 2100 BC. One additional innovation these people made is the Spoked Wheel in place of the solid wheel which gave the chariots the speed and agility by making the wheels much lighter. The Sintashta and Petrovka cultures are a sub-culture of the larger Andronovo Culture . There is evidence of the Andronovo Culture’s continued presence in the Southern Russia/Northern Kazakhstan area till 1000 BC. Interestingly, the Sintashta & Petrovka Sub-Cultures, who buried chariots and gave us the evidence, lasted from 2100-1700 BC. And even more interestingly, the Fedorovo sub-culture show evidence of cremation and fire worship dated 1500-1300 BC.
Modified Kurgan Hypothesis – As I explained before, Marija Gimbutas postulated the Kurgan Hypothesis using which she showed that the Kurgan people, as she called them due to their unique burial customs, spread out as the Indo Europeans across the world with a patriarchal militaristic culture that overran the Mother Goddess culture everywhere. We already know that it wasn’t a simple matristic Mother Goddess culture but a full-fledged proto-trinity. In my readings, there is linguistic evidence to show that elements of Proto-Indo-European language and customs were present in Ukraine from 2500-2000 BC which shows splitting into Proto-Greek and Proto-Indo-Iranian . The Proto-Indo-Iranian arm appearing in the Andronovo culture we spoke about earlier and the Proto-Greek arm appearing in the Catacomb Culture .
Happenings in the Neolithic Plate [5300-539 BC]
First, let us look at a 2000BC map of the world which shows the constituents of the Neolithic Plate very well to orient ourselves. Sumer is represented by Ur III (Southern Mesopotamia) and Hurrians (Northern Mesopotamia).
What i did next is to compile the key dates for all the reference civilizations of the Neolithic Plate – Egyptian, Sumerian, Minoan, IVC, Elamite, Anatolian, Dilmun, Mycenean. I also included Celts but i couldn’t find any key dates for them.
I have included the entire compilation into this open document format spreadsheet Key Historical Events [Excel format: Key Historical Events Excel]. Please open this spreadsheet and take a look at the sheet titled “Bronze Age Dates”. I have included as many references and commentary for all of you to understand some of the key events taking place as I understood them.
As i was compiling the dates, i made some observations:
1. Around 2000 BC, Hittites turned out to be the earliest Indo-European arrival in the Neolithic Plate into the Anatolian area and they become one of the most powerful people in the region. They quickly became literate adopting the Anatolian Hieroglyphics which we covered in our earlier post. By 1800 BC, they borrowed the Akkadian Cuneiform to create the Hittite Cuneiform script. Their key god was the Storm God [equivalent of Indra]. The rest of the pantheon shows amalgamation with the Luwian pantheon. Hittites also introduced their big military innovation – the Triga or the 3-horse chariot which can carry one charioteer plus 2 warriors, in place of the Biga or the 2-horse chariot which could carry only one warrior aside from the charioteer.
2. In every major area, there seems to be evidence of amalgamation of the local people in the Neolithic Plate. Even the most war-like of the new arrivals – the Hittites show a lot of evidence of amalgamating with the previous Luwian culture. This is in stark contrast to Gimbutas’s assertion that the world was completely overrun by the war-like Indo Europeans across the board completely decimating the previous Mother Goddess culture.
At this point I decided to sort the dates in the Bronze Age Dates sheet in descending order to see anything new will pop-up. I made this into another sheet – Bronze Age Dates Sorted in the same spreadsheet file mentioned above. Voila! Many key Bronze Age events jumped out at me by clustering around [I marked these in yellow] 1700 BC:
1. We have already proved that Minoa is Magan . Minoan Crete suffers 2 major destructions (1700 BC and 1400BC) – both times their palaces in Knossos were burnt down. Natural Calamities are suspected – archaeologists looking for a volcanic eruption to explain the destruction and the decline of Minoa. Linear A script appears in Knossos after 1700BC which i observed to be similar to cuneiform [Citation Needed]. After 1400BC, Myceneans take control of Crete. Poseidon becomes a key god in Knossos [Poseidon=Rudra]. Since the horned god Cernunnos was there in Minoa, they connected it to Poseidon like the Aryans tied Rudra to IVC’s Siva.
2. IVC rises to its maturity and the trail of evidence shows that the IVC cities (not the suburbs) were abandoned around 1700 BC. Historians are not able to explain this abandonment and are looking towards Natural Calamities – floods, sudden drying of rivers etc to explain this. We also have evidence of Aryans entering the IVC area.
3. In 1700 BC, The Mitanni – a third splinter group of the Proto-Indo-Iranians invade Hurrians in Northern Mesopotamia [The other 2 are Iranians and Aryans]. We get to see the world’s first written mention of the Proto-Indo-Iranian gods – Indra, Varuna, Nasatya (Ashwini Twins) in the Mitanni-Hittite Treaty of 1380 BC. By then Mitannis have become the Proto-Indo-Iranian super-stratum on top of the Hurrian people. Mitanni also cremate their dead.
4. Elamite-Babylonians take over Southern Mesopotamia. Dilmun collapses in 1600 BC. Middle Kingdom comes to an end in Egypt in 1630 BC.
5. Hittites started a major territorial expansion drive in 1700 BC. They have also adopted the new Cuneiform script by then.
Neolithic Supply Chain Collapses
If you go back and read the Neolithic Supply Chain post you will see that all the events above are affecting all the constituent parts of the pentagonal supply chain – Sumer, IVC (Meluhha), Magan, Dilmun, Anatolia and Egypt. I also proved in that post that the whole raison d’etre for the Supply Chain was the hard to find Tin which was sourced from Celtic UK via the hub at Magan. It is easy to deduce at this point that the Supply Chain was totally disrupted due to a near simulataneous attack on all the major nodes [Egypt there is no attack but somehow the Middle Kingdom ended]. It doesn’t appear that all of these were coordinated even though most of the conquests were done by the Indo-European peoples except the Elamite-Babylonian who don’t seem to be Indo-European.
This collapse triggers a huge shortage of Bronze in the Neolithic Plate and shows up in the historical records as such. A major trade disruption also shows up in the historical record of the Bronze Age. It took nearly 500 years after the collapse of the Neolithic Supply Chain to pave the way for the discovery of Iron which ushered in the Iron Age with an accepted dating of 1200 BC.
Neolithic Plate Subducts Under the Central Asian Plate
When I came up with the Anthropological Plate Tectonics analogy, I had just begun my research. I had no idea that I will land up at the point that I am at now. I used this analogy based upon the fact that the Neolithic world was collaborating extensively and I had read about the Austronesians hiving off from China and overrunning the pacific-oceanic islands thanks to their outrigger canoe – a breakthrough invention. I thought that resembled the Plate Tectonics concept of Subduction – one plate buckling under the other to form a new fused area in the border areas of the plates.
Well, look at what happened in the Neolithic world, by 1000 BC or so the entire Neolithic mother goddess culture had been amalgamated by the Indo European Culture everywhere in the Neolithic world except the Celts and the Eastern and Southern Regions of the Indian subcontinent. Subduction is an useful analogy, because if you look from the top it appears to be Indo European, but when you dig deeper, you clearly see the Neolithic Substratum everywhere.
I believe this is the critical error we are making both in Greece and India, looking just at the most recent layer and coming to a conclusion based on that. Interestingly, if you look at who is driving these erroneous conclusions – it is the Greek Nationalists in Greece and Hindu nationalists in India (Hindutvavadis). In Greece, the revisionist historians are trying hard to find a non-existent Volcanic eruption in Crete so that they can extend the Greek historical record back into the Minoan period because they want to prove that the highly advanced Minoan civlization was Greek. In India, revisionist historians are trying to invent some natural calamity to explain the abandonment of the IVC Cities so that they can extend the Vedic people back into the IVC period to show that the Vedic people are indigenous and that the highly advanced IVC was Vedic!
With this post, we complete our look at the Aryan Invasion Theory. From our next post we will go back to the IVC again. Here are some questions for you to dig deeper into:
1. Who burnt down Knossos in 1700 BC and again in 1400BC?
2 . How come Hittites and Myceneans who we say are Indo Europeans bury their dead, whereas the Indo Iranians and Mitannis cremate their dead?
3. Based on the above, what date would you assign to the Vedas?