Cotsen Institute of Archaeology

Sisupalgarh Project


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The Sisupalgarh Project is a multiseason archaeological research project at the ancient city of Sisupalgarh in eastern India. Occupied from approximately the 3rd century B.C. to 4th century A.D., this urban area was surrounded by dramatic walls early in its occupation.

A fortified site of impressive proportions, the 130-hectare city of Sisupalgarh had local, regional and long-distance ties with sites throughout the Indian subcontinent as documented archaeologically through the widespread distribution of ceramics, metal, and stone objects. Through a two-year program of systematic surface-survey, the distribution of these artifacts was correlated with evidence for manufacturing activities to assess the city's economic organization.

The site is located on the SE edge of modern Bhubaneswar in eastern India. The site was excavated in 1948 and again in 1950 by the Archaeological Survey of India. These excavations provided stratigraphic information about the construction of the walls, and the layout of a small portion of residential habitation. Building from these initial investigations, this project assesses the city from a whole-site perspective to evaluate whether there were different zones of activity, where the inhabitants of the city may have come from, and the relationships that they had with each other.



Monica L. Smith
The Cotsen Institute of Archaeology
304 Haines & A351 Fowler
Office: (310) 794-9179
South Asian Lab: (310) 825-8271
Email: smith@anthro.ucla.edu