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Department of Ancient History and Culture

The Department of Ancient History and Culture was established in July 1985. In the past four decades, the Department has flourished manifold and has carved out a space of its own in India and Worldwide as a pioneering Department with high quality researches and publications in the fields of Indo-Greek and Indo-Iran studies, philosophy and religion, Buddhist studies, art and archaeology.

One of the significant achievements of the Department has been the development of Panchal Museum, which houses antiquities of Neolithic Age to Modern period and photographs of monuments of the ancient and medieval past of the Rohilkhand region. It has several galleries such as Abhaipur Excavation Gallery, Terracotta Gallery, Textile Gallery, Rama Shankar Rawat Gallery, Surendra Mohan Mishra Gallery, Photo Gallery, Ahichhatra Diorama, etc. The museum has a small chemistry laboratory which is used for treatment and cleaning of coins, copper/iron objects, preservation and conservation of manuscripts.

The library with reading room is an important organ of the Department which has a collection of more than 2000 books and journals. Setting up of a computer laboratory is in the pipeline for which 14 sets of desktop have already been purchased.

The Department has a small unit of Archaeology, which within a short time has proved its prowess by excavating three ancient sites of the region. The site of Abhaipur (2001-2006), in Bisalpur tehsil of Pilibhit district, being the first site coming under the spade of archaeologists, has been marked in the archaeological map of India as the first human burial sites of Painted Grey ware (PGW) culture. The other sites are Gokalpur (2007-11), a PGW site, in the outskirt of Bareilly city and Gajnera (2019-20) in tehsil Bhuta, Bareilly, a late PGW site. Besides, there are above 300 sites marked in the maps of Rohilkhand region by the research students of the Department and the team of archaeology.

The Department achieved another important feat with the establishment of “Indo-Iranian Studies Centre” in 2012. It functions in a separate building in the campus and was inaugurated by His Excellency Mr. Sayed Mahdi Nabizadeh (Ambassador of Iran in India) and the Vice-Chancellor of the University Prof. Mohd. Muzammil. The Centre with the help of Iran Culture House, New Delhi, imparts certificate course on Persian language and culture and has an impressive library that houses books, pictures and audio-visual CD/DVDs on diverse subjects of Persian history, culture, art and language. It also time to time organizes lectures, exhibitions and celebrates Iranian festivities like Navruj (21st March) and Shbe Yalda (21st December) with much fanfare.