Image: Iravatham Mahadevan
Image: Iravatham Mahadevan

This ideograph combines the pictograph of a jar with the verb to rise. The verb to rise in Indus script is equivalent to the Chinese character shān 彡. The level of the contents in a jar rises up as the jar is filled. Hence, this is the Indus noun contents.

Illustrative Text Reference:

Harappa: Pottery: H-1727 A: Asko Parpola, B. M. Pande, and Petteri Koskikallio, 2010: Corpus of Indus Seals and Inscriptions: Volume 3,1: Page 243: New material, untraced objects, and collections outside India and Pakistan: Suomalainen Tiedeakatemia.


Indus inscription H-1727 is found on a damaged pot. Therefore, part of this character is missing. Nonetheless, we can be fairly certain that the character was Mahadevan's sign number 1434. It is especially interesting that the two character inscription reads: 'guard contents.'

Image Credit:

Indus Script Sign Number 1434: List of Sign Variants: Iravatham Mahadevan, 1977: The Indus Script: Texts, Concordance and Tables: The Director General Archaeological Survey of India.