Ahmad Hasan Dani


Ahmad Hasan Dani

Infobox Scientist
name = Ahmad Hasan Dani



caption =
birth_date = birth date and age|1920|06|20
birth_place = Basna, British India
death_date =
death_place =
residence = Islamabad, Pakistan
nationality = Pakistani
field = Archaeology, History, Linguistics
work_institution = Quaid-e-Azam University
alma_mater = Banaras Hindu University
known_for = Indus Valley Civilization
prizes = "Hilal-e-Imtiaz", "Sitara-e-Imtiaz", "Bundesverdienstkreuz", "Légion d'honneur", "Palmes Academiques"

Ahmad Hassan Dani (Urdu: احمد حسن دانی) FRAS, SI, HI (born 20 June 1920) is a Pakistani archaeologist, historian, and linguist who is among the foremost authorities on South Asian archaeology and history. [Khan, O (1998). [http://www.harappa.com/script/danitext.html An interview with Dani] in Islamabad, on 6 January. Retrieved on 15 May 2008] He is Emeritus Professor at the Quaid-e-Azam University and the director of Taxila Institute of Asian Civilizations. Throughout his career, Dani has held various academic positions and international fellowships, apart from conducting archaeological excavations and research. He is also the recipient of various civil awards in Pakistan and abroad. As a prolific linguist, he speaks more than 14 local and international languages and dialects.

Early life

Dani, an ethnic Kashmiri, was born on 20 June 1920 in Basna, British India.Khan, M.N. [http://www.salaam.co.uk/knowledge/biography/viewentry.php?id=3326 Biographical Data] . Retrieved on 15 May 2008.] He graduated in 1944, with an MA degree, to become the first Muslim graduate of Banaras Hindu University. In 1945, Dani worked as a trainee in archaeology under the guidance of Mortimer Wheeler. At this time, he participated in excavations at Taxila and Mohenjo-daro. He was subsequently posted at the Department of Archaeology of British India at Taj Mahal, Agra.

After the Partition of India, Dani migrated to East Pakistan. There, between 1947-49 he worked as Assistant Superintendent of the Department of Archaeology. At this time, he rectified the Verandra Museum at Rajshahi. Later, in 1950, he was promoted to the position of Superintendent-in-Charge of Archaeology. For a period of twelve years (between 1950-62), Dani remained Associate Professor of History at University of Dhaka, while at the same time working as curator at Dhaka museum. During this period, he carried out archaeological research on the Muslim history of Bengal.

Dani moved to the University of Peshawar in 1962 as Professor of Archaeology and remained there until 1971. During this time, he led the resetting and renovation works for the Lahore and Peshawar Museums. In 1971, he moved to Quaid-e-Azam University, Islamabad and remained at various positions until his retirement in 1980 when he was made Emeritus Professor.

He received an Honorary Doctorate from Tajikistan University, (Dushanbe) in 1993. During the same year, Dani established the Islamabad Museum. Between 1992–96, he was appointed Advisor to the Ministry of Culture of Pakistan, on Archaeology. Between 1994-98, he remained Chairman of the National Fund for Cultural Heritage in Islamabad. Since 1997, Dani has been the Honorary Director at Taxila Institute of Asian Civilizations.

Visiting, research and honorary fellowships

During his Associate Professorship at Dhaka University, Dani worked as a Research Fellow at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London (1958–59). Later, in 1969 he became Asian Fellow at the Australian National University, Canberra. In 1974, he went to the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia as a visiting scholar. In 1977, he was Visiting Professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Over the span of his career, Dani has been awarded honorary fellowships of Royal Asiatic Society of Bangladesh (1969), German Archaeological Institute (1981), IsMEO Rome (1986) and Royal Asiatic Society (1991).

Research expeditions

Dani has been extensively engaged in excavation works on the pre-Indus Civilization site of Rehman Dheri in Northern Pakistan. He also made a number of discoveries of Gandhara sites in Peshawar and Swat Valleys, and worked on Indo-Greek sites in Dir. [Iqbal, M. (2002). [http://www.dawn.com/2002/05/21/nat2.htm Archaeological site discovered in Dir] , Dawn (newspaper), 21 May. Retrieved on 6 March 2007)] From 1985, he involved in research focusing on the documentation of the rock carvings and inscriptions on ancient remains from the Neolithic age in the high mountain region of Northern Pakistan along with Harald Hauptmann of Heidelberg Academy of Sciences, University of Heidelberg. [ Shahid, J. (2006). [http://www.dawn.com/2006/12/05/nat11.htm Dam threatens ancient remains] , Dawn, 5 December. Retrieved on 6 March 2007)] In 1990–91, he led the UNESCO international scientific teams for the Desert Route Expedition of the Silk Road in China and the Steppe Route Expedition of the Silk Road in the Soviet Union.

Awards and honours

Dani was awarded the title of Distinguished National Professor in 2004 by the Higher Education Commission in recognition of his contributions and achievements. [HEC (2004). [http://www.hec.gov.pk/new2/htmls/press_release/2004/mar/10.htm HEC Announces list of "Distinguished National Professors"] , HEC Press Release, 10 March. Retrieved on 6 March 2007)]

Awards

* 2000 Hilal-e-Imtiaz, Government of Pakistan
* 1998 Légion d'honneur, President of the French Republic
* 1997 Aristotle Silver Medal, UNESCO
* 1996 Order of the Merit, Government of Germany
* 1994 Knight Commander, Government of Italy
* 1992 Aizaz-e-Kamal, Government of Pakistan
* 1990 Palmes Academiques, Government of France
* 1986 Gold Medal, Asiatic Society of Bangladesh
* 1969 Sitara-e-Imtiaz, Government of Pakistan
* 1944 Gold Medal, Banaras Hindu University


= Publications =

Dani has more than 30 published books and numerous journal articles to his credit. He is fluent in Bangla, French, Hindi, Kashmiri, Marathi, Pushto, Persian, Punjabi, Sanskrit, Seraiki, Sindhi, Tamil, Turkish and Urdu languages. He has also published various texts in most of these languages.

Books

* Historic City of Taxila. Sang-e-Meel Publications. 2001. ISBN 978-9693509472
* History of Northern Areas of Pakistan (Up to 2000 AD). Sang-e-Meel Publications. 2001. ISBN 978-9693512311
* Romance of the Khyber Pass. Sang-e-Meel Publications. 1997. ISBN 978-9693507195
* New Light on Central Asia. Sang-e-Meel Publications. 1996. ISBN 978-9693502947
* Central Asia Today. Sang-e-Meel Publications. 1996. ISBN 978-9693507065
* Human Records on Karakorum Highway. Sang-e-Meel Publications. 1995. ISBN 978-9693506464
* Peshawar: Historic City of the Frontier. Sang-e-Meel Publications, (2nd Revised edition). 1995. ISBN 978-9693505542
* A Short History of Pakistan, Book One: Pre-Muslim Period. University of Karachi. (3 editions, 1967, 1984, 1992). ISBN 969-404-008-6
* History of Northern Areas of Pakistan (Historical studies). National Institute of Historical and Cultural Research. 1989. ISBN 978-9694150161
* Perspectives of Pakistan. National Institute of Pakistan Studies, Quaid-e-Azam University. 1989. ASIN B0000CQNUB
* The historic city of Taxila. Centre for East Asian Cultural Studies. 1986. ISBN 978-4896565003
* Chilas: The City of Nanga Parvat (Dyamar). 1983. ASIN B0000CQDB2
* Thatta: Islamic architecture. Institute of Islamic History, Culture & Civilization. 1982. ASIN B0000CQD43
* Indus Civilization: New Perspectives. Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad. 1981
* Indian palaeography. Clarendon P. 1963. ASIN B0000CM0CB
* Dacca: A record of its changing fortunes. S.S. Dani (Publisher). 1962. ASIN B0000CQXMU
* Prehistory and Protohistory of Eastern India: With a Detailed Account of the Neolithic Cultures. K.L. Mukhopadhyay. 1960
* Bibliography of the Muslim Inscriptions of Bengal. 1957

Co-authored works

* With J-P. Mohen (eds.), "History of Humanity, Volume III, From the Third Millennium to the Seventh Century BC". New York: Routledge/Paris: UNESCO. 1996. ISBN 0415093066.
* With B.A. Litvinksy, "The Kushano-Sassanian Kingdom", in History of Civilizations of Central Asia, South Asia Books. 1999. ISBN 978-8120815407

Notes

See also

* Sindhology

External links

* [http://www.heritage.gov.pk/html_Pages/C.V.%20of%20.Dani.htm Dani's Profile] at [http://www.heritage.gov.pk/ National Fund for Cultural Heritage] , Pakistan.
* [http://www.expressindia.com/news/ie/daily/20010105/iin05014.html Discovery of the prevalence of the Śāradā Script in Bahlk, Afghanistan]

Persondata
NAME= Dani, Ahmad Hasan
ALTERNATIVE NAMES=
SHORT DESCRIPTION= Pakistani archaeologist, history, linguisticist
DATE OF BIRTH= 1920-06-20
PLACE OF BIRTH=
DATE OF DEATH=
PLACE OF DEATH=


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