Prehistory of Bangladesh in the Light of Recent Discovery

Abstract views: 155 / PDF downloads: 73


  • Bakhtiar Uddin Badal MSS in Archaeology, Department of Archaeology, Comilla University, Cumilla, Bangladesh;
  • Md. Sadequzzaman Assistant Professor, Department of Archaeology, Comilla University, Cumilla, Bangladesh
  • Sumaia Khatun MSS in Archaeology, Department of Archaeology, Comilla University, Cumilla, Bangladesh



Prehistory, Fossil Wood, Stone Age Tools, Lalmai Hill Range, Bangladesh.


Bangladesh has deep historical roots, with a significant concentration of prehistoric evidence discovered primarily at the Lalmai Hill range in Cumilla district and Chaklapunji in Habiganj district. This study focuses on the Lalmai Hill range in Cumilla, which comprises multiple sites that have garnered considerable attention due to their rich prehistoric heritage. While previous investigations focused on the southern part, covering a length of 16.53 km and a width of 1 km to 2.5 km, this study aimed to explore the entire hill range with the objective of uncovering new signs of prehistoric activities and digitally documenting them. Intrusive surface surveys were conducted in an unsystematic manner due to the challenging hilly terrain, and samples were collected without following a predetermined sampling strategy. The findings reveal the discovery of four new sites in the southern region, where sixty-one Stone Age tools were unearthed. The results show that the tool assemblages consist of two major categories with six different varieties based on their typology. Detailed examination of the physical attributes of the tools primarily reveals controlled knapping techniques applied to remove flakes and manufacture the tools. The presence of fossil wood and the absence of fossil wooden tools in the northern and middle sections of the hill range suggest that the southern part offered favorable environmental resources for shelter to prehistoric migrants. Additionally, the exposed fossil woods, which served as suitable raw material, are prominent features of the Dupi Tila formation, dating back to the Plio-Pleistocene epoch. The study underscores the importance of continued investigation and excavation to unravel the intricate signs of prehistoric culture within this archaeological landscape.


Abdullah, A., Md Sayem, A. S., Yeasmin, R., Rahman, M. M., Bari, Z., Khanam, F. (2021). Plio-Pleistocene to Recent Tectonostratigraphic Evolution of the Lalmai Anticline in the Western Indo-Burman Range (Bangladesh): Insights from Lithofacies Analysis and Structural Synthesis. Arabian Journal of Geosciences, 14(5)3-8.

Alam, M. S. (2001). Prehistory of Bangladesh. Appendix-H in Palaeolithic Industries of Bhimbetka Central India. Dhaka: Bangla Academy.

Aung, T. H. (2017). Raw Material Utilization, Technology, and Typology of Palaeolithic Tools in Myanmar : Were There Lithic Technological Links in the Regional Context?. Journal of Humanities and Social Sciences, 44(1), 189–204.

Badal, M. B. U., Sadequzzaman, M., Rahman, M. M., Hasan, M. N. (2022). Environmental Factors that Permitted Prehistoric Human Activities at Southern Lalmai Hills in Comilla, Bangladesh. Journal of Rajshahi Science and Technology University, 52-60.

Bakr, M. (1976). Quaternary geomorphic evolution of the Brahmanbaria– Noakhali area, Comilla and Noakhali Districts, Bangladesh. Geological Survey of Bangladesh.

Brammer, H. (2012). The Physical Geography of Bangladesh. The University Press Limited.

Bhuiyan, M. H. (2018). MAINAMATI. In R. C. ABDUL MOMIN CHOWDHURY (Ed.), HISTORY OF BANGLADESH: Early Bengal in Regional Perspectives (up to c. 1200 CE) (pp. 263-280). Dhaka: Asiatic Society of Bangladesh.

Chakrabarti, D. (1992). Ancient Bangladesh: A Study of the Archaeological Sources. Oxford University Press.

Dani, A. (1960). Prehistory and Protohistory of Eastern India. Firma K.L. Mukhopadhyay.

De Terra, H. (1943). Research on Early Man in Myanmar. Transactions of American Philosophical Society.

Forestier, H., Sophady, H., Puaud, S., Zeitoun, V. (2014). New Evidence of Old Stone Tools from the Mekong Terraces, Cambodia. Comptes Rendus Palevol, 13(2), 109–120.

Hazarika, M. (2017). The Archaeological Record: A Synthesis of Earlier Research. In M. Hazarika, Prehistory and Archaeology of Northeast India: Multidisciplinary Investigation in an Archaeological Terra Incognita (pp. 78–79). Oxford University Press.

Hazarika, M., Nittur, R., Poddar, B. C., & Sanathan, Y. (2020). Geo archaeological Explorations in Tripura (2018 2019) A Report by Hazarika et al. Man and Environment.

Hazarika, M. (2013). Prehistoric Cultural Affinities Between Southeast Asia, East Asia, and Northeast India: An Exploration. Unearthing Southeast Asia's Past, (1), 16–25.

Hazarika, M. (2012). Lithic industries with Palaeolithic elements in Northeast India. Quaternary International, 269, 48–58.

Hoque, D. M. et al. (2008). A Debate on Prehistory of Bangladesh. Pratnatattva, 3.

Jahan, S. H. (2016). Prehistoric Archaeology in Bangladesh. A Companion to South Asia in the Past, 399–411.

Kokkaliari, M., Adam E., Vlachopoulos, A., Iliopoulos, A. (2022). Tracing Raw Material Sources of Prehistoric Stone Artefacts by Non-Invasive Techniques : The Case of the Early Bronze Age. Quaternary 5(4): 42.

Roy, J. S. & Ahsan, S. M. K.. (2004). Recent Discovery of Fossil Wood Tools from Shakunna Mura (SM) of Lalmai Hill. Pratnatattva, 10(1), 2-8.

Khan, M.S.H., Hossain, M.S. & Uddin, M.A. (2018). Geology and Active Tectonics of the Lalmai Hills, Bangladesh–An Overview from Chittagong Tripura Fold Belt Perspective. Journal of the Geological Society of India, (92), 713-720.

Kusimba, S., & Chap, K. (2003). Comparing Prehistoric and Historic Hunter-Gatherer Mobility in Southern Kenya. East African Archaeology: Foragers, Potters, Smiths, and Traders Torical 8(1), 1–17.

Morin, J. (2017). Classification and Typologies of Stone Celts in British Columbia. January, 82.

Movius, H. L. (1947). Early man and Pleistocene stratigraphy in southern and eastern Asia. Proceedings of the Prehistoric Society, 37(4), 185-187.

Rashid, M. H. (1997). The City and its Environs. In A. B. Husain (Ed.), Mainamati-Devaparvata (p. 235). Asiatic Society of Bangladesh.

Rashid, T., Monsur, M. H., & Suzuki, S. (2006). A Review on the Quaternary Characteristics of Pleistocene Tracts of Bangladesh. OKAYAMA University Earth Science Reports.

Reddy, V. R. (1987). Elements of Prehistory. Mittal.

Roy, J. S. (2016). A preliminary study on the impact of some geomorphic factors on stone age fossil wood artefacts of Lalmai Hills. Pratnatattva, 22, 113-124.

Ramesh, N. R. (1986). Discovery of Stone Age Tools from Tripura and Its Relevance to the Prehistory of Southeast Asia. Bulletin of the Geological Society of Malaysia, 2, 289-310.

Reynolds, T. (1993). Problems in the Stone Age of South-East Asia. Proceedings of the Prehistoric Society, 59(1), 1-15.

Stout, D., Quade, J., Semaw, S., Rogers, M. J., & Levin, N. E. (2005). Raw material selectivity of the earliest stone toolmakers at Gona, Afar, Ethiopia. Journal of Human Evolution, 48(4), 365–380.

Sankalia, H. D. (1962). Prehistory and Protohistory in India and Pakistan. University of Bonbay.

Sankalia, H. D. (1964). Stone Age Tools. Deccan College.

Roy, J. S. & Ahsan, Sayed M. Kamrul. (2002). A Study of Prehistoric Tools on Fossil Wood from Chaklapunji, Hobiganj. Pratnatattva, 6, 21–32.

Soejono, R. P. (1961). Preliminary Notes on New Finds of Lower-Palaeolithic Implements from Indonesia. Asian Perspectives, 5, 217–232.




How to Cite

Badal, B. U., Md. Sadequzzaman, & Khatun , S. (2024). Prehistory of Bangladesh in the Light of Recent Discovery. CenRaPS Journal of Social Sciences, 5(2), 1–19.