Ornate Mosque

Ornate tile wall on mosque in Lahore. Lapis Lazuli was an important symbol of wealth and power in Mesopotamia, but lapis was nearby for the Indus and relatively unimportant.  Elites preferred objects made of materials transformed by complex technologies like faience (glazed silica on quartz or other materials) this led to the modern tile work in cities like Lahore and Multan..The first use of blue-glazed ceramics, in the form of amulets, ornaments and miniature vessels traces back over 5000 years to the faience technology of the Indus cities.  Just inside the Delhi Gate in the walled city area of Lahore.  4,800 years ago, at the same time as the early civilizations of Mesopotamia and Egypt, great cities arose along the flood plains of the Indus and Saraswati (Ghaggar-Hakra) rivers.  Developments at Harappa have pushed the dates back 200 years for this civilization, proving once and for all, that this civilization was not just an offshoot of Mesopotamia..They were a highly organized and very successful civilization.  They built some of the world's first planned cities, created one of the world's first written languages and thrived in an area twice as large as Egypt or Mesopotamia for 900 years (1500 settlements spread over 280,000 square miles on the subcontinent)..There are three major communities--Harappa, Mohenjo Daro, and Dholavira. The town of Harappa flourished during this period because of it's location at the convergence of several trade routes that spanned a 1040 KM swath from the northern mountains to the coast.

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