Text Questions and Answers:
1. Who was considered a ‘foreigner’ in the past.
Ans: In the past, any stranger who was not a part of a particular culture or society was seen as a foreigner. The terms ‘pardesi’ and ‘ajnabi’ were used for foreigners in Indian and Persian languages. In those times a person living in the city might have seen a forest dweller as a foreigner or vice versa.
2. State whether True or False:
a) We do not find inscriptions for the period after 700.
b) The Marathas asserted their political importance during this period.
c) Forest-dwellers were sometimes pushed out of their lands with the spread of agricultural settlements.
d) Sultan Ghiyasuddin Balban controlled Assam, Manipur and Kashmir.
a) False b) True c) True d) False
3. Fill in the blanks:
(a) Archives are places where —— are kept.
(b) ———– was a fourteenth century chronicler.
(c) ——– , ———, ———, ———- and ——- were some of the new crops introduced into the subcontinent during this period.
a) Manuscripts b) Ziyauddin Barani c) Potatoes, corn, chillies, tea and coffee .
4. List some of the technological changes associated with this period.
Ans: Some of the technological changes associated with this period includes the ‘Persian wheel’ in irrigation, the invention of firearms in combat and the spinning wheel in weaving.
5. What were some of the major religious developments during this period.
Ans: Some of the major religious developments during this period include the worship of new deities, building of new temples by the royalty, increase in the importance of the priestly class, etc. The introduction of the Holy Quran and Islam in public life and the emergence of the Bhakti cult were also some other religious changes.
6. In what ways has the meaning of the term “Hindustan’” changed over the centuries.
Ans: Historically the term”Hindustan” did not have the political and national intentions that it has today. In the 13th century it was used to denote the dominion of the Sultan of Delhi and did not include the southern peninsula. But now it is used to show the oneness of our country.
7. How were affairs of jatis regulated.
Ans: The jatis as social groups, formed their own rules and regulations in order to control the conduct of their members. Such rules and regulations were enforced by an assembly of elders from the jati , known as ‘jati panchayat’ . However, the jati panchayats were not completely sovereign and had to conform to the village system of rules enforced by the village chief.
8. What does the term pan-original empire mean.
Ans: The term ‘pan-original’ stands for an empire that encompasses several regions.Examples of pan-regional empire include the Mughal empire, the Maratha Empire, the Chola Empire, the Tughluq and the Khalji Sultanates etc.
9. What are the difficulties historians face in using manuscripts.
Ans: While using manuscripts for the purpose of historical research, historians have to take into consideration several difficulties. As the name suggests all manuscripts were handwritten . There might be small but significant changes between two copies. The authors could introduce random changes in the content according to their wishes.
Due to this the changes would grow over centuries and thus transform the document slowly from its original version. So the historians had to often read different manuscript versions of the text in order to compare and contrast the matter in the manuscript.
10. How do historians divide the past into periods. So they face any problems in doing so.
Ans: Time is not the passing of hours, days or years for the historians. Instead it is the reflection of social, economic, cultural and religious changes that occur through the ages. Division of past into large segments makes it easy to study time for historians.
British historians in the middle of the nineteenth century divided time into three periods—- Hindu, Muslim and British. This division was made on the basis of the fact that no major change other than the religion of the rulers could occur during these periods. But this division ignored the rich diversity of the subcontinent. The history of the past had seen a lot of changes. The sixteenth century was not the same as the eighteenth century . Hence it is very difficult for the historians to describe the entire period as one historical unit.
11. Compare either Map 1 or Map 2 with the present day map of the subcontinent, listing as many similarities and differences as you can find.
Ans: Map 1 was made in 1154 CE by Al Idrisi an Arab geographer. This section is a detail of the Indian subcontinent from his larger map of the world. Map 2 was made by a French cartographer in 1720 .
Both maps are quite different , even though they represent the same area. In Map 1 we find south India at the place where we would expect to find north India and Sri Lanka is the island at the top. Map 2 was made nearly 600 years later after Map 1.By that time the subcontinent had changed a lot.
(i) Find out where records are kept in your village or city.
(ii) Who writes these records.
(iii) Is there an archive.
(iv) Who manages it 9 .
(v) What kinds of documents are stored there.
(vi) Who are the people who use it.
(i) In our village records are kept in the Panchayat office.
(ii) Gram Sevak who is a government employee writes these records.
(iii) There is no archive in our village.
(iv) Our Sarpanch manages it.
(v) The documents stored there include the record of the land of the village, data of births and deaths, the number of public properties, data of health centres etc.
(vi) Villagers use these records. Certificates are issued to the villagers on the basis of these records.
Fill in the blanks:
1. —— is one who draws a map.
2. Hindustan was used by ——— for the first time in the thirteenth century.
3. —————– was the assembly of elders.
4. ——- was the major development of this age.
5. There were no ——– ——- in those days so scribes copied manuscripts by hand.
6. The Rajput’s got their name from ——– meaning the son of a ruler.
1. Cartographer 2. Minaj-I-Siraj 3. Jati Panchayat
4. Bhakti 5. printing press 6. Rajaputra
Answer the following:
1. What factors contributed to the variety of developments.
Ans: The factors that contributed to the variety of developments are that new technologies and innovation came to the sub continent along with people who came from outside and settled here.
2. Why did the Brahmanas dominate the society during this period.
Ans: The Brahmanas were the only class of people who knew Sanskrit well, so they dominated the society during this period.
3. What does time mean for historians. How does it help them.
Ans: For historians time reflects changes in social and economic organization, changes of ideas and beliefs. They divide the past into large segments. They study the different aspects and their impact on society and their contribution to future generation.