How did inscriptions of the Maurya dynasty proclaim the message of Asoka’s dhamma?
The inscriptions of Asoka on rocks and pillars are often regarded as most valuable sources to know about dhamma.
(i) The name of the ruler, Asoka, is mentioned as “devanampiya” , beloved of the gods and “piyadassi”, or “pleasant to behold”.
(ii) It reflects the anguish of the ruler as well as marks a change in his attitude towards warfare.
(iii) Asoka also tried to hold his empire together by propagating dhamma, the principles of which were simple and virtually universally applicable.
(iv) It was to ensure the well-being of people in this world. He appointed special officers, known as the dhamma mahamatta to spread the message of dhamma.
Explain the layout of the Royal Centre of the Vijayanagara Empire.
The royal Centre was located in the south-western part of the settlement.
(i) It included over 60 temples. About thirty building complexes have been identified as palaces.
(ii) The “King’s palace” was the largest of the enclosures but has not yielded definitive evidence of being a royal residence.
(iii) It had two of the most impressive platforms, usually called the “audience hall” and the “mahanavami dibba” which is located on one of the highest points in the city.
(iv) One of the most beautiful building in the royal centre was the Lotus Mahal and the most spectacular was known as the Hazara Rama temple as this was probably meant to be used only by the king and his family.
Analyse the areas of Cunningham’s confusion in understanding the significance of Harappa.
Cunningham’s Confusion were:
(i) Cunningham’s main interest was in the archaeology of the Early Historic and later periods. Cunningham tried to place Harappan seals within the time-frame with which he was familiar.
(ii) He used the accounts left by Chinese Buddhist pilgrims who had visited the subcontinent between the fourth and seventh centuries CE to locate early settlement.
(iii) Cunningham also collected, documented and translated inscriptions found during his surveys. When he excavated sites he tended to recover artefacts that he thought had cultural value.
(iv) A site like Harappa which was not part of the itinerary of the Chinese pilgrims, did not fit very neatly within his framework of investigation. Cunningham did not realize how old Harappa artifacts were.
Name the hill station founded during the course of the Gurkha War of 1815 – 16. Why was it developed as a sanitarium ? Give one reason.
The hill station founded during the course of the Gurkha War was Simla.
It was developed as a sanitarium because of the temperate and cool climate of the Indian hills.
‘‘Rumours and prophecies played a part in moving people to action.’’ Justify the statement in the context of the Revolt of 1857.
Rumors and prophesies played a part in moving people to action:
(i) They told that bullets coated with the fat of cows & pigs and that biting those bullets would corrupt their caste and religion. They were referring to the cartridges of the Enfield rifles which had just been given to them.
(ii) The rumours said, the British had mixed the bone dust of cows and pigs into the flour that was sold in the market. In towns and cantontments, sepoys and the common people refused to touch the atta.
(iii) There was fear and suspicion that the British wanted to convert Indians to Christianity.
(iv) The response to the call for action was reinforced by the prophecy that British rule would come to an end on the centenary of the Battle of Plassey, on 23 June 1857.
Why did Santhals revolt against zamindars, moneylenders and the colonial state during 18th century ? Explain.
Santhals revolted against zamindars, moneylenders and the colonial state during 18th century because:
(i) Santhals were restricted from moving down to the lower hills and valleys, they were confined to the dry interior and to the more barren and rockey upper hills. This severely affected their lives, impoverishing them in the long term.
(ii) The santhals, however, soon found that the land they had brought under cultivation was slipping away from their hands.
(iii) The states wss levying heavy taxes on the land that the Santhals had cleared.
(iv) Money lenders were charging them high rates of interest and taking over the land when debts remained unpaid and zamindars were asserting control over the Damin area.
How did the trade of sixth century BCE extend into Central Asia and Africa ?
The trade of Sixth Century BCE:
(i) From the sixth century BCE, land and river routes criss-crossed the subcontinent and extended in various directions – overland into Central Asia and beyond, and overseas, from ports that dotted the costline-extending across the Arabian Sea to East and North Africa and West Asia, and through the Bay of Bengal to Southeast Asia and China.
(ii) A wide range of goods were carried from one place to another – salt, grain, cloth ,metal ores and finished products, stone, timber, medicinal plants, to name a few. Spices, especially pepper, were in high demand in the Roman Empire, as were textiles and medicinal plants, and these were all transported across the Arabian Sea to the Mediterranean.
Read the following lines and answer the question that follows:
‘I will build a funeral pyre of sandalwood and aloe;
Light it by your own hand When I am burned away to cinders:
Smear this ash upon your limbs.
... let flame be lost in flame.’
Following the footsteps of Mirabai, the woman of Indian society became independent in her thoughts. She initiated the advancement of the category of woman. Throw light from the values learnt from her life which is the pathway to the modern society.
Values learnt from the life of Meera Bai are:
(i) Sacrifice and devotion to god
(ii) Caste equality
(iii) Women empowerment
‘‘The Chola rulers proclaimed their connections with the Alvars and Nayanars.’’ Cite two examples
(i) They supported Brahmanical and bhakti traditions by making land grants and constructing temples for Vishnu and Shiva.
(ii) The most magnificent Shiva temples, including those at Chidambaram, Thanjavur and Gangaikondacholapuram were constructed by them and representation of Shiva in bronze sculpture were also produced.
‘‘Abul Fazal has given a vivid account of Akbar’s darbar.’’ Elaborate.
Akbar’s Darbar were as:
(i) The physical arrangement of the court, focused on the sovereign, mirrored his status as the heart of society.
(ii) Its centrepiece was therefore the throne, which gave physical form to the function of the sovereign as axis mundi.
(iii) The canopy, a symbol of kingship in India for a millennium, was believed to separate the radiance of the sun from that of the sovereign.
(iv) In court, status was determined by spatial proximity to the king. The place accorded to a courtier by the ruler was a sign of his importance in the eyes of the emperor.