Jean-François Jarrige

French archaeologist (1940-2014)

Jean-François Jarrige (August 5, 1940, Lourdes – November 18, 2014, Paris) was a French archaeologist specializing in South Asian archaeology and Sindhology. He held a doctorate from the University of Paris in oriental archaeology. He carried out the excavations in Baluchistan, Mehrgarh and Pirak. In 2004, he became the director of the Musée Guimet in Paris.


  • “Another element of continuity between ceramics of the third millennium Baluchistan and those of the second millennium can be found in the decoration. While the geometric painted designs on pottery from Pirak may be quite different from those on Harappan pottery, they are very much in the older ‘Quetta-Amri’ tradition. In our report on Pirak we pointed out similarities which we feel are too close to be explained merely as a result of coincidence. We postulated that such traditional styles of decoration survived in regions which were at the periphery of the principal zone of Harappan influence... ...Should the origins for these transformations of the second millennium be sought in exogeneous events, in colonization of the area by new peoples, by a sudden influx of refugees bringing new crops and animals with them? Probably not, since the processes which I have briefly described are too complex to be attributed to the arrival of invaders who at the same time would have had to have introduced rice from the Ganges, sorghum from the Arabian Gulf, and camels and horses from Central Asia. It is also not likely that the newcomers, whether they be a ruling elite or refugees, would have had the impetus to change an agricultural system still capable of being intensified without the introduction of new crops and, for rice, new irrigation practices.”
    • JARRIGE, Jean-Francois. 1985. ‘Continuity and Change in the North Kachi Plain (Baluchistan, Pakistan) at the Beginning of the Second Millennium BC. Pages. 42-60 in J. Schotsmans and M. Taddei (eds.), South Asian Archeology, 1983. Naples: Instituto Universatirio Orientale

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