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Ancient Indian Inventions and Discoveries

History | 8-14 yrs | Learning Pod, Interactive


This game was played by the Mughal emperors. Earlier known as Pachisi, this game originated in India by the sixth century. A variant of this game, called Ludo, made its way to England during the British Raj.

Snakes and ladders:

Snakes and ladders originated in India as a game based on morality.

Chaturanga/ Chess:

The game of chess originated in India 1500 years ago , during the time of the Gupta dynasty, by an Indian Brahmin. The Indian king Balhait ordered a Brahmin to design a chess game called Chaturanga to help strengthen his people’s intelligence. In Sanskrit, it means an army of four divisions.


Rulers were first made during the Indus valley civilization. They were made from ivory.


Indians have been writing with ink since the fourth century BC. During that time in South India, a sharp needle was used to write with ink.


Did you know that shampoo evolved from oil? It comes from the word champo. The Nawabs of Bengal used it for head massages at first. Over the years, it became shampoo.

Cotton gin :

A cotton gin is used to separate cotton fibres from their seeds. A painting of a cotton gin has been found in the Ajanta caves. The painting dates back to the fifth century AD. We were also the first to cultivate cotton. This began in the Indus Valley civilization.

Flush toilets:

The Indus Valley civilization was the first to use toilets with flushes. The city had an advanced sewage system too.


One of the earliest docks of the world was the one in Lothal, Gujarat. Oceanographers think that the Harappans must have possessed knowledge relating to tides. So, they could build such a dock on the ever-shifting course of the River Sabarmati. The walls are of kiln- burnt bricks and so scientists hypothesise that Lothal engineers studied the effects of tidal movements on brick-built structures.

For more such interesting history articles and videos, visit History for Kids category.