Image: Lynn Fawcett
Image: Lynn Fawcett

This is a pictograph of a measuring rod combined with a pictograph of a measuring rope. The rod is used to determine the width, and the  rope is used to determine the length. Hence, it is an ideograph for the noun dimensions.

Illustrative Text Reference:

Mohenjo-daro: Seal: M-752 a: Sayid Ghulam Mustafa Shah and Asko Parpola, 1991: Corpus of Indus Seals and Inscriptions: Volume 2: Page 58: Collections in Pakistan: Suomalainen Tiedeakatemia.


There is only one extant example of this Indus sign.


It is unfortunate that the second character in inscription M-752 is damaged. However, the remaining characters clearly refer to weaving. Cloth was a valuable commodity. It therefore, seems likely that some cloth was woven to order.

On a back strap loom, width is limited to how far the weaver can reach from side to side to pass the shuttle. The width of the cloth may therefore, have been standardised as indicated by the measuring rod, whereas the length would have varied according to the commission.

Image Credit:

Measuring Rod and Rope: Lynn Fawcett, 2019.