Image: Iravatham Mahadevan
Image: Iravatham Mahadevan

This is the noun area with the addition of a third dimension. Hence, it is an ideograph for a cube. A cuboid, similar to the Mesopotamian gur, was used to measure volume.

Mahadevan's sign number 149 does not have unit markings. It therefore, becomes an ideograph for procedure. It is the noun method or way.

This Indus sign shares a common root with the Chinese character 由.

Illustrative Text References:

Mohenjo-daro: Seal: M-35 a: Jagat Pati Joshi and Asko Parpola, 1987: Corpus of Indus Seals and Inscriptions: Volume 1: Page 19: Collections in India: Suomalainen Tiedeakatemia.


Mohenjo-daro: Seal: M-1739 a: Asko Parpola, B. M. Pande, and Petteri Koskikallio, 2010: Corpus of Indus Seals and Inscriptions: Volume 3,1: Page 37: New material, untraced objects, and collections outside India and Pakistan: Suomalainen Tiedeakatemia.


In modern Chinese 由 is more often pronounced yóu, which is the conjunction because.

Image Credit:

Indus Script Sign Number 249: Sign List of the Indus Script: Iravatham Mahadevan, 1977: The Indus Script: Texts, Concordance and Tables: The Director General Archaeological Survey of India.