Book Review: Call of the Lost Ages: A Study of the Indus Valley Script


Jerry Anderson

Midwest Book Review

After deciphering ancient scripts like the Sumerian cuneiform or the hieroglyphs, we were able to gain considerable insights into these civilizations. Being able to read such ancient scripts is sometimes the only way of learning about ancient cultures, in depth. For example, we knew almost nothing regarding the ancient Egyptians before we could read their inscriptions. The Sumerian cuneiform, on the other hand, went a long way to ensure our knowledge about the ancient Near East.

However, all ancient scripts have not yet been deciphered. This limits our knowledge of our ancient history. The Indus Valley script, belonging to the western half of the Indian Subcontinent, is one such yet unread ancient script. Many attempts have been made by eminent scholars and epigraphists like Asko Parpola, Iravatham Mahadevan, Jonathan Mark Kenoyer, etc., to decipher the script belonging to the Indus Valley Civilization, but none of these attempts has been successful. Thus very important part of the ancient world history remains hidden to us.

The author attempts a detailed and unbiased study of the Indus Valley script. In order to do so, he approaches the subject from various quarters that include a thorough investigation of reasons for decline of the civilization, a possible continuation of civilization, a possible source of the civilization predating its span, etc. He takes into account the recent findings by the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) to chart the relation of its decline with the decline of the ancient River, Saraswati.

The Indus script seems to be related to the Brahmi script and its variants. The author provides a complete list of the Indus signs in relation to their respective Brahmi relatives. A symbiotic relation between the various ancient cultures is discussed in the book. The whole work seems to be based upon sound logic and it draws its strength from the complete rejection of any assumption in the process. The author has a unique way of building upon facts, brick by brick, to build the complete monument. Subhajit Ganguly is a physicist known for his formulation of zero-postulation. He is also the author of ‘Abstraction In Theory – Laws of Physical Transaction’.

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