A beautifully crafted earthen pot with leaf decoration was unearthed at Archaeological Survey of India’s excavation site at Keezhadi near here on Thursday, adding to a repository of evidence pointing to the existence of an urban habitation closer to the erstwhile capital of Pandya kingdom.
The exquisitely crafted pot, measuring 72 cm in width and 42 cm in height, was found by an ASI team led by K. Amarnath Ramakrishna, Superintending Archaeologist.
“This is for the first time such a decorative pot has been found in a habitation site in Tamil Nadu during excavation,” says Mr. Amarnath. The storage pot contains pure river sand but its actual use could not be fixed immediately.
Two similar pots of different shapes have started to emerge in two other pits of the excavation site. The huge red pot, which is among a variety of earthenware discovered in the area, was found embedded alongside a water storage facility.
Noted epigraphist V. Vedachalam says that the kind of antiquities found at the site, ‘Pallichandai Thidal,’ reaffirm the belief that nestled among three ancient places — Konthagai, Keezhadi and Manalur — was an urban settlement that had trade links with North India and the western world during the Sangam Age. References to Manalur are found in Tiruvilayadalpuranam. During a later period, Konthagai and Keezhadi were merged as Kuntidevi Chaturvedimangalam and gifted to Brahmins.
A fossilised piece of bone, which could have been used in arrows, was found during excavation on Thursday. A square copper coin of Pandyan Peruvazhudhi with horse and turtle motifs was also found at the surface level.
The excavation has been extended to 43 pits and the first season will come to an end by the end of this month. The second season of excavation will begin in January.