Image: Lynn Fawcett
Image: Lynn Fawcett

This symbol has two elements. Firstly, the noun basket is used to represent the broader concept of an object made from woven grass. Secondly, it is combined with the verb to cover up. Hence, it is an ideograph for a straw cape.

Illustrative Text Reference:

Kalibangan: Seal: K-18 a: Jagat Pati Joshi and Asko Parpola, 1987: Corpus of Indus Seals and Inscriptions: Volume 1: Page 302: Collections in India: Suomalainen Tiedeakatemia.


I have based this symbol on Mahadevan's drawing of sign number 1093.


The chattel motif on seal K-18 is facing left. Therefore, the inscription should be read from left to right.


Inscription K-18 refers to the protection afforded by a rain cape. According to an article in China Daily, such capes could also be used as sleeping mats¹. The modern capes made by Fan Licai, have two distinct surfaces. A woven surface on the inside, which is what you might sleep on, and an outer layer of unwoven straw along which raindrops would flow down to the ground².

Image Credit:

Straw Cape: Lynn Fawcett, 2017.


1. Woman Keeps Art of Making Straw Rain Cape Alive: Page 1: China Daily, 2016: Accessed: 27 April 2020.

2. The two sides of the rain capes can be seen in this photograph: Ibid: Page 4: Accessed: 27 April 2020.