Short notes on Painted Grey Ware (PGW)


The PGW was predominant in the western Gangetic Plain in the first millennium BC. Some sites were located in the Hakra Plain in a post-Harappan context.

Some of the well-known PGW excavated sites are Rupar (Punjab), Bhagwanpura (Haryana), Noh (Rajasthan), Alamgirpur, Ahichchhatra, Hastinapur, Atranjikhera, Jakhera and Mathura (all in Uttar Pradesh).

Settlements, located along river banks, are mostly small villages, except Bhukari in Ambala district, Haryana, which is an extensive settlement covering 96,193 The PGW pottery type is wheel made and of well levigated clay, grey ashgrey in color, and the painting in black or a deep chocolate color on the inner and outer surface.


It has more than 40 designs, and its most common forms are bowls and dishes. Objects of copper, glass, iron and bone unearthed include axes, fish hooks, chisels and arrow heads. Along with iron spearheads, an iron sickle and hoe have been found at Jakhera.

The sites have yielded terracotta objects like discs, balls, human and animal figurines, beads of semi­precious stones like agate, jasper, carnelian and lapis lazuli.

Excavations at Atranjikhera, Jakhera, and Hastinapur suggest people lived in structures of wattle and daub.

Evidence of rice, wheat and barley has been obtained. The proximity of cattle bones near domestic hearths, bearing marks of having been cut, suggests that cattle provided food other than milk products, and that their flesh was eaten.

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