The mystery surrounding an ancient, prosperous civilization that vanished about 3,600 years ago has been clarified by a recent study.

The Bronze Age, which lasted roughly from 2600 BCE to 1900 BCE, saw the Indus Valley civilization, also known as the Harappan civilization, flourish in its fullest form in the northwest parts of South Asia.

The civilization, which was regarded as highly developed, was dispersed throughout the Indus River basin, including portions of what is now modern Pakistan, India, and Afghanistan.

Despite its remarkable achievements, much about the Indus Valley civilization remains a mystery, including its social and political structures, language and the reasons behind its decline and disappearance. Its written language, which has yet to be deciphered, has made its history and culture difficult to fully understand.

It has been posited by several experts that a drought hit the Indus Valley around 4,200 years ago, although its magnitude has yet to be determined.

The recent study, published in the peer-reviewed journal Communications Earth & Environment on April 4, claims that a stalagmite found inside Dharamjali Cave in the Himalayas paints a detailed image of life in the ancient civilization.