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Question A.1:

Which is the medieval period of Indian history?

Answer:

The medieval period of the Indian history started from the 8th century and lasted up to 18th century. During this period, India witnessed considerable social, economic, religious and political changes.

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Question A.2:

How was the term foreigner understood in medieval times are compared to modern usage?

Answer:

In modern times, a foreigner means a person who resides in his/her country but occasionally visits our countries. But in the medieval times, any stranger who had different physical features or who followed different cultural practices was treated as a foreigner or pardesi by the local people. 

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Question A.3:

What are the problems faced by a historian in interpreting information from the manuscripts?

Answer:

Historians face various problems while interpreting old manuscripts. Manuscripts are usually handwritten. Thus, often, while copying text from another text, scribes make small mistakes. These mistakes remain in the copies. So, understanding the actual text is difficult.

Secondly, the accounts of the court historians are mostly biased. Written by the authors to please the rulers, these accounts often provide a glorified image of the rulers.

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Question A.4:

Did Jati play an important role in society of medieval times?

Answer:

The medieval period saw the emergence of a socially and economically diverse society in which jati or caste played an important role. Jati or caste established a social hierarchy. Ranking of a person in the society was determined by the caste to which he/she belonged. On the basis of jatis, jati panchayats were formed. Jati panchayats had the responsibility to control the conduct of their members as per the rules framed by them. 

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Question A.5:

What developments took place in technology?

Answer:

Foreigners who came to India in the medieval period brought innovative ideas and technology with them. Some of the important technological developments of this period are as follows:

  1. The Persian wheel was used for irrigation.
  2. The spinning wheel made the weaving of clothes easier.
  3. Fire arms were introduced in combats.
  4. Paper was introduced for writing.

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Question B.1:

In what ways has a the meaning of the term Hindustan changed over time?

Answer:

The meaning of the term 'Hindustan' has changed a number of times over the centuries. Presently, the term 'Hindustan' is understood by 'India', a modern nation state. However, the term 'Hindustan' carried different meanings in medieval times.

  1. The rulers in the Sultanate and Mughal period called their Indian dominion centred around Delhi as Hindustan.
  2. During the 13th century, the writer Minhaj-us-Siraj used the term 'Hindustan' in political context to denote kingdom areas of Punjab, Haryana and the land between Ganga and Yamuna,
  3. In the 16th century, Babur and Amir Khusrau used the term 'Hindustan' to describe the geography, fauna and culture of the inhabitants of the sub-continent.

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Question B.2:

How is medieval period distinct in terms of availability of sources?

Answer:

The sources of the medieval period are different from the sources of periods before that. There are plenty of written records and memoirs. The sources of the medieval period can be divided into the following categories:

1. Official records: Official records were the documents issued by the ruler to his office. Official records have been found relating to the history of the Turko-Afghan rule and the Mughal rule in India.
2. Contemporary writings: Contemporary chronicles include works of Amir Khusrau, Al Beruni and Minhajuddin Siraj. All historians have discussed in depth about different aspects of the medieval period in India. 
3
. Accounts of foreign travellers: Ibn Batuta’s work in Rehala (on travels) provide details of the various aspects of the Tughluq period. Another important traveller Abdur Razzaq left us valuable information on the Vijaynagar kingdom.
4. Coins and inscriptions: During the period of the Sultanate and the Mughal India, various coins were introduced by the sultans and Mughal emperors. They contain evidence related to the year of accession, the extent of the dominion of the Sultan and his relations with the neighbouring powers, etc. 

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Question B.3:

Bring out the changes noticeable in religion during the medieval period.

Answer:

In the thousand-year history of the mediaeval period, several changes and developments in religious traditions were witnessed. Some of them are as follows:

  1. In the Hindu religion, new deities emerged and were worshipped by people. Temples were constructed extensively by kings in this period.
  2. Brahmins gained unprecedented importance and became a dominant group because of their knowledge of the Sanskrit language and status as priests in religious activities.
  3. The Bhakti and Sufi movements also emerged in this period. The Bhakti movement emphasised love to the all-powerful God. There were no priests and no expensive rituals in this tradition.
  4. During this period, a new religion named Islam was brought to India by merchants and migrants. The rule of the sultans marked the beginning of the rule of the Muslim dynasties. 

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Question B.4:

Do you think it is correct to divide history on the basis of religion of the rulers? Is this division acceptable or unacceptable? Give reasons for your answer.

Answer:

Dividing the history of a country on the basis of religion of the rulers is unacceptable, as it completely overlooks other important driving forces of history. These forces could be economic such as the beginning of feudalism or social such as the beginning of the caste system. Few narrow-minded British historians divided the Indian history into three periods: Hindu, Muslim and British. British historians who dominated the historiography in the 19th and 20th centuries completely overlooked other important aspects of history in India and believed that there were no other significant developments except the religion of the governing authority. It was mainly a way to implement the divide and rule policy of the British in India.

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Question B.5:

How did the process of centralisation and regionalisation influence each other?

Answer:

The processes of centralisation and regionalisation influenced each other immensely in the medieval period. Mughal emperors were taking help of regional kings or elites to govern geographically huge and culturally diverse territories. Mughals were also influencing the art and culture of  the regions in which they were ruling. This was manifested in distinct shared traditions in governance, economy and taxation system. The regions also imbibed many of the features of the art and architecture of the long-existing Mughal Empire.

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Question C.1:

The late medieval period stretches from _________ to ___________ century.

Answer:

The late medieval period stretches from thirteenth to eighteenth century.

Explanation: The late medieval history began with the Sultanate rule in the country. It ended with the coming of the Europeans to India. 

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Question C.2:

__________ was a thirteenth century chronicler.

Answer:

Minhaj-us-Siraj was a thirteenth-century chronicler.

Explanation: Minhaj-us-Siraj, a ​thirteenth-century chronicler, is known for his creation Tabaqat-i-Nasiri.

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Question C.3:

India derived its name from the river ________ as mentioned in the _________ sources.

Answer:

India derived its name from the river Indus as mentioned in the Greek sources.

Explanation: The first river that supported a civilisation in India was the River Indus. Thus, this river plays a very significant role in our history. The earliest Greek travellers and historians derived our country's name from the River Indus.  

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Question C.4:

__________ came to widely used for writing manuscripts.

Answer:

Paper was widely used for writing manuscripts.

​Explanation: In ancient India, manuscripts were mostly written on leaves or barks of trees. However, from medieval times, paper started to be widely used for writing manuscripts. 

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Question C.5:

Rajputs are known for their courage and __________.

Answer:

Rajputs are known for their courage and valour.

Explanaton: It is believed that Rajputs were the bravest warriors of India. Their stories of valour and courage have  made into several folk tales and have been discussed by many historians.  

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Question C.6:

A new religion _______ entered India during the period under study.

Answer:

A new religion Islam entered India during the period under study.

Explanation: Indian history is often classified into three periods, Hindu, Muslim and Modern history. The beginning of medieval India coincides with the appearance of Islam in the Indian land. 



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