Dilip Kumar Chakrabarti

Dilip Kumar Chakrabarti
Native name দিলীপ কুমার চক্রবর্তী
Born (1941-04-27) 27 April 1941
Calcutta, British India
Nationality Indian
Alma mater Calcutta University
Occupation Historian, Archaeologist
Known for Studies on the early use of iron in India and the archaeology of Eastern India
Awards Gurudeva Ranade Award from Indian Archaeological Society, Delhi, Honorary D.Litt from M. J. P. Rohilkhand University
Website https://cambridge.academia.edu/DilipKChakrabarti

Dilip Kumar Chakrabarti (born 27 April 1941)[1] is an Indian archaeologist, a professor of South Asian archaeology at Cambridge University, and a senior fellow at the McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research, Cambridge University.[2] He is the dean of the Historical and Civilizational Centre, Vivekananda International Foundation. He is known for his studies on the early use of iron in India and the archaeology of Eastern India.


Chakrabarti started his career as a lecturer of Archaeology at Calcutta University from 1965-77. He was a reader of Archaeology at Delhi University from 1977-90. He moved to a teaching post in South Asian archaeology at Cambridge University in 1990 and was promoted to professor prior to his retirement in 2008.

The publication of his 1984 book "The Antiquities of Kangra", where he was a co-author with Syed Jamal Hasan created a controversy when it was discovered that this book reproduced verbatim the M. Phil thesis of his student and co-author Syed Jamal Hasan. A 1985 committee of inquiry found in its report "The charge of plagiarism against Dr. Dilip Chakrabarti is unfounded. … Dr. Chakrabarti’s failure to mention in the preface to the book that the book is substantially the same as Mr. Hasan’s M.Phil thesis submitted to the University of Delhi is a serious impropriety."[3]

Dr. Dilip Chakrabarti has strived to bring academic rigor into the Indian history research. He "lambasted" the Indian Council of Historical Research "for inviting “vedic teacher” David Frawley "to deliver the Foundation Day lecture. … Chakrabarti said, 'David Frawley is not an academic. Why should he be invited to deliver an academic lecture?' "It’s a fact there is a long shadow of the Left on history writing in India. But we need to correct that through proper academic research. We cannot achieve that with the likes of Mr. Frawley."[4]

Chakrabarti argues 'that South Asian archaeology need not mimic the developments in the Euro-American World, but rather it should be attentive to its own needs'.[5] Chakrabarti is the editor of the twelve-volume work History of Ancient India.


  • Ancient Bangladesh: A Study of the Archaeological Sources (1992) Delhi: Oxford University Press
  • The Early Use of Iron in India (1992) Delhi: Oxford University Press
  • Archaeology of Eastern India: Chhotanagpur Plateau and West Bengal (1993) Delhi: Munshiram Manoharlal Publishers Private Limited.
  • Archaeology of coastal West Bengal: Twenty-four Parganas and Midnapur districts (1994) South Asian Studies,10:pp. 135–160
  • A note on the use of metals in ancient Bengal, Pratnasamiksha (1994) Bulletin of the Directorate of Archaeology and Museums, Government of West Bengal, 2 & 3:pp. 155–158
  • The Archaeology of Ancient Indian Cities (1995) Delhi: Oxford University Press.
  • Post-Mauryan states of mainland south Asia (1995) In: F. Raymond Allchin (ed.), The Archaeology of Early Historic South Asia, pp. 274–326. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press
  • Preliminary observations on the distribution of sites in the south Bihar plain (1995) South Asian Studies, 11:pp. 129–147
  • Buddhist sites across south Asia as influenced by political and economic forces (1995) WorldArchaeology,27(2):pp. 185–202. JSTOR 125081
  • Copper and its Alloys in Ancient India (1996) Delhi: Munshiram Manoharlal Publishers Private Limited
  • From Purnea to Champaran: The distribution of sites in the north Bihar plains (1996) South Asian Studies, 12:pp. 147–158
  • The Issues in East Indian Archaeology (1998) Delhi: Munshiram Manoharlal Publishers Private Limited
  • India: An Archaeological History. Palaeolithic Beginnings to Early Historic Foundations (1999) Delhi: Oxford University Press
  • Archaeological Geography of the Ganga Plain. The Lower and the Middle Ganga (2001) Delhi: Permanent Black
  • The Archaeology of European Expansion in India, Gujarat, c. 16th–18th Centuries (2003) Delhi: Aryan Books International
  • Archaeology in the Third World: A History of Indian Archaeology since 1947 (2003) Delhi: D. K. Printworld Private Limited
  • A Sourcebook of Indian Archaeology. Volume 3. Prehistoric Roots of Religious Beliefs, Human Remains, The First Steps in Historical Archaeology: Sculpture, Architecture, Coins and Inscriptions (ed. with F. Raymond Allchin) (2003) Delhi: Munshiram Manoharlal Publishers Private Ltd.
  • Indus Civilization Sites in India: New Discoveries (ed.) (2004) Mumbai: Marg Publications
  • The Archaeology of the Deccan Routes: The Ancient Routes from the Ganga Plain to the Deccan (2005) New Delhi: Munshiram Manoharlal Publishers Private Limited
  • The Oxford Companion to Indian Archaeology: The Archaeological Foundations of Ancient India, Stone Age to AD 13th Century (2006) Delhi: Oxford University Press
  • Archaeological Geography of the Ganga Plain: The Upper Ganga (Oudh, Rohilkhand, and the Doab) (2008) New Delhi: Munshiram Manoharlal Publishers Private Limited
  • The Geopolitical Orbits of Ancient India (2010) Delhi: Oxford University Press
  • Fifty Years of Indian Archaeology (1960-2010): Journey of a Foot Soldier (2012) Delhi: Aryan Books International


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