New Empires and Kingdoms
State whether true or false:
- Harishena composed a prashasti in praise of Gautamiputra Shri Satakarni.
- The rulers of Aryavarta brought tribute for Samudragupta.
- There were twelve rulers in Dakshinapatha.
- Taxila and Madurai were important centres under the control of the Gupta rulers.
- Aihole was the capital of the Pallavas.
- Local assemblies functioned for several centuries in south India.
Answer: 1 False, 2 False, 3 True, 4 False, 5 False, 6 True
Question 1: Mention three authors who wrote about Harshavardhana.
Answer: Banbhatta, Ravikirti, Xuan Zang
Question 2: What changes do you find in the army at this time?
Answer: Some of the kings continued to maintain a well organized army. A new trend also emerged during this period. Some military leaders maintained an army and provided the army to the king when required. Such military leaders did not get salary. But they got grants in the form of land. They also got the right to collect land revenue. The revenue was utilized to maintain the soldiers, horses and battle equipments. Such military leaders were known as samanthas. When a ruler became weak, a Samantha tried to become independent.
Question 3: What were the new administrative arrangements during this period?
Answer: New Administrative Arrangements:
- There was no single ruler who was enough powerful to have total control over the Indian subcontinent. Kings usually made power-sharing agreements with local powerful people.
- Some posts were made hereditary. This meant that the son got a particular post after the death of this father.
- There were many instances when a single person held many posts.
- Many important men exercised authority in local administration.
Question 4: What do you think Arvind would have to do if he was acting as Samudragupta?
Answer: Arvind needs to become brave. He also needs to develop a keen interest in music and painting.
Question 5: Do you think ordinary people would have read and understood the prashastis? Give reasons for your answer.
Answer: The prashastis were written in Sanskrit. But this was not the language of the common people. Hence, most of the common people could not have read or understood the prashastis.
- Who was the court poet of Samudragupta?
- Who was the court poet of Harshavardhana?
- Who was the greatest king of the Chola dynasty?
Answer: Pulakeshin II
- The reign of which empire is called the Golden Age of Indian history?
Answer: Gupta Empire
- What is the reason of the Gupta period called the Golden Age of Indian history?
Answer: During the reign of the Gupta Empire, there was all around prosperity in India. This period also witnessed significant developments in the field of science, arts and literature. Hence, this period is also called the Golden Age of Indian history.
- What is a prashasti? What was the purpose of writing a prashasti?
Answer: A piece written in praise of someone is called prashasti. Prashasti was usually written in praise of a king.
- What was the condition of untouchables during the reign of Harshavardhana?
Answer: The condition of untouchables was very bad during the reign of Harshavardhana. An untouchable person was not allowed to live in a village or city. They lived on the outskirts. Whenever an untouchable entered a village, he had to warn the others about his presence. His usually beat a stick to create noise to alert others. This ensured that others could avoid coming anywhere close to him.