History Optional Paper-1 Solution – 1980: Q.1 (Map based question)

Q. Mark any fifteen of the following on the map supplied to you and give descriptive notes on them:

(1) Amber

(2) Ahmadnagar

(3) Anegondi

(4) Badami

(5) Bassein

(6) Bidar

(7) Chanderi 

(8) Chittor

(9) Arikamedu

(10) Devagiri

(11) Gaur

(12) Halebid

(13) Ikkeri

(14) Kalibangan

(15) Jinji

(16) Burzahom

(17) Dvarasamudra

(18) Nalanda

(19) Nagarjunakonda

(20) Nasik

(21) Pattadakal

(22) Penugonda

(23) Eran

(24) Purandar Fort

(25) Gulbarga

(26) Sasaram

(27) Sikandara

(28) Tanjore

(29) Kausambi

(30) Mamallapuram



(1) Amber (or Amer)

Amber is ancient name of Jaipur and famous for the glass house and elegant forts. It was established by the Kachhawaha King Dulha Ray in 1128.

Much of the present structure known as Amer Fort is actually the palace built by  Raja  Man  Singh  who  ruled  from  1590-1614  A.D.  The  palace  contains  several buildings,  such  as  the  Diwan-i-Khas,  and  the  elaborately  painted  Ganesh  Poll built by Mirza Raja Jai Singh I (Man Singh I’s grandson).

Amer  was  capital  of  the  Kachwahas  until  1727  when  the  ruler  of  Amer  Sawai Jai Singh II founded a capital Jainagara (Jaipur), named after him, about nine kilometers south of Amer.

(2) Ahmadnagar

Ahmadnagar was founded in 1490 by Ahmad Nizam Shah who was the governor of Chunar under Bahmani rulers. With the breakup of the Bahmani Sultanate, Ahmad established a new sultanate in Ahmednagar, also known as Nizam Shahi dynasty. It lasted until its conquest by Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in 1636.

In  1759,  the  Peshwa  of  the  Marathas  obtained  possession  of  the  place  from Nizam  of  Hyderabad  and  in  1795  it  was  ceded  by  the  Peshwa  to  the  Maratha chief Daulat Rao Sindhia. It came into the possession of the British in 1817, according to the terms of the Treaty of Poona.

(3) Anegondi (Anegundi)

It is an old town and a fortress situated in the Raichur district of Karnataka on the left bank of Tungabhadra. It was the seat of the Rajas of Anegondi, who were the lineal descendents of the Kings of Vijayanagara found at Hampi. The Vijayanagara dynasty ruled this place from 1336 to 1565 when it was overthrown by Sultan of Deccan.

During 16th, 17th and 18th centuries, Anegundi was ruled by Bijapur Sultans, Moghuls, Marathas and Tipu Sultan. Anegundi has Fort with a Durga temple and a Ganesha cave temple where Vijayanagara kings used to pray.

(4) Badami

Vatapi is in Bagalkot district of Karnataka. It was the capital of the Early Chalukyas, who ruled between the 6th and 8th centuries. It was founded  in  540  AD  by Pulakeshi  I,  an  early  ruler  of  the  Chalukyas.

The Pallavas under the king Narasimhavarma I seized it in 642 AD & destroyed the Vatapi and called himself Vatapikonda. Vikramaditya I of Chalukyas drove back Pallavas in 654 AD.


Badami is famous for its sandstone cave temples and other structural temples. They provide evidence of the early styles and stages of the southern Indian architecture.

The rock-cut Badami Cave Temples of mainly Siva, Vishnu and Jains are from 6th to 8th centuries. Shiva is found with his consort Parvathi and the 18 armed lord Nataraja in 81 dancing poses. The Bhutanatha group of temples and Mallikarjuna group of temples is found in Badami. There are also paintings on the ceiling.

Badami fort lies east of the Bhuthnatha temple, atop a cliff right opposite the Badami cave temples.


Badami has many inscriptions. The first Sanskrit inscription in old Kannada script dates back to 543 CE, from the period of Pulakeshi I.

One inscription near the Bhuthanatha temple also has inscriptions dating back to the 12th century in Jain rock-cut temple dedicated to the Tirtankara Adinatha.

(5) Bassein (or Vasai)

Bassain was an impostant port in the Konkan region of Maharashtra. Vasai or Bassein Fort is a large fort called the fort of St. Sebastian of Vasai.

The Treaty of Bassein was signed by Sultan Bahadur Shah of Gujarat and the Portugese in 1534, based on which, the Portuguese gained control of Bassein. They built churches, cathedrals and other huge buildings here.

In 1739, Maratha captured Bassain through the treaty of Salbai. After Maratha’s defeat from British in 1818, it became part of British territories.

(6) Bidar

It is in Karnataka state. Earliest  recorded  history  of  its  existence  as  a  fort  is traced  to  the  first Muslim invasion by Prince Ulugh Khan in 1322, where after it came under the reign of the Tughlaq dynasty.

With the establishment of the Bahmani dyanasty (1347), Bidar was occupied by Sultan Alla-Ud-Din Bahman Shah Bahmani. During the rule of Ahmad Shah I  (1422–1486),  Bidar  was  made  the  capital  city  of  Bahmani  Kingdom  (earlier capital was Gulbaraga) since it had better climatic conditions and was also a fertile land. Mahmud Gawan, the Prime Minister of Bahmani, had built a great three storied university (Madrasa) here which had library, mosque, labs, lecture halls etc.

The beautiful Jama Masjid, the 16 pillared mosque, tombs of the 12 Bahmani kings are situated in Bidar.

Bidar remained the capital till the extinction of the kingdom and its disintegration into five independent kingdoms of Bijapur, Golconda, Ahmadnagar, Bidar and Berar. Bidar sultanate was founded by Barid Shahi dynasty and then occupied by Adil Shahi dynasty of Bijapur in 1620. Aurangzeb captured it and Bidar became part the Mughal Empire in 1686. In  1724, Bidar  became  a  part  of  the  Asaf  Jahi  Kingdom  of  the  Nizams.

Bidar is known for its Bidri handicraft products. Bidriware is a metal handicraft that originated in Bidar in the 14th century, during the rule of the Bahamani Sultans.

(7) Chanderi 

Chanderi is in Gwaliar district of Madhya Pradesh and is located strategically on the borders of Malwa and Bundelkhand. In 11th century, it was dominated by the trade routes of Central India and was proximate to the route to the ancient ports of Gujarat as well as to Malwa, Mewar, Central India and the Deccan.  Consequently, Chanderi became an important military outpost.

Chanderi is mentioned by the Persian scholar Alberuni in 11th century.  Balban captured the city in 1251. Sultan Mahmud I Khilji of Malwa captured the city in 1438. In 1520 Rana Sanga of Mewar captured the city, and gave it to Medini Rai, a rebellious minister of Sultan Mahmud II of Malwa. The Mughal Emperor Babur captured the city from Medini Rai and witnessed the Rajput rite of jauhar. In 1540 it was captured by Sher Shah Suri. The Mughal Emperor Akbar made the city a sarkar in the subah of Malwa.

Later it came under Marathas and then under British.

(8) Chittor

It was capital of Mewar ruled by the Sisodias of the Guhilot clan of Rajputs. It is famous for Chittorgarh Fort which is a symbol of glorious Rajput tradition. The fort is surrounded by a circular wall which has seven huge gates.  Chittor was one of the  most contested  seats  of  power  in  India  with  some  of  the  most glorious  battles  being  fought  over  its  possession.

The first attack was by Alauddin Khilji in 1303 AD, who was enamoured by the beauty of Rani Padmini.  Padmini committed jauhar and Chittorgarh was captured by Alauddin Khilji. It was recaptured in 1326 by the Hammir Singh of the Guhilot clan.

The great ruler of Mewar, Rana Kumbha (1433–68) was a brilliant warrior, poet, and musician. He built Mewar up to a position of unassailable military strength. He had built a Vijaya Stambha after victory over Mahmud Shah Khalji. He led the combined Rajput forces against the Mughal emperor Babur in 1527, but was defeated at the Battle of Khanwa.

Later in 1535 Bahadur Shah, the Sultan of Gujarat besieged the fort. All men then living in the fort died fighting, and women committed Jauhar led by Rani Karnawati. The same was repeated after the Mughal Emperor Akbar captured Chittorgarh in 1568. Then, the capital of Mewar was moved to Udaipur by Rana Udai Singh II.

Chittorgarh is also associated with Meera Bai (Bhakti poet of Krishna) and Maharana Pratap. The fort at Chittorgarh also contains beautiful temples. A kirti Stambha built by Jain merchant contains Jain sculptures.

(9) Arikamedu (or Poduka)

Arikamedu is located on the eastern coast near Puducherry. It was known as Poduka to the Romans. It was a famous port during the sangam Age (200 BC – 300 AD) mostly under Early Chola.

It had bead making facility and trading with Roman traders took place. Various Roman artifacts, such as a large number of amphorae bearing the mark of Roman pottery have been found at the site, supporting the view on an ancient trade with Rome. Roman lamps, glassware and gems have also been found at the site. A rich haul of Roman golden coins proves that India got a lot of gold in return of her export.

(10) Devagiri (or Deogiri or Daulatabad)

It is situated in the Aurangabad district of Maharashtra. Bhillama V who was one of the powerful Yadava rulers founded the city of Deogiri and shifted his capital here. Deogiri was a great centre of trade and commerce.

During the rule of Rama Chandra Deva, Ala-ud-din Khilji invaded and captured Deogiri in A.D. 1296.  However, Ramachandradeva was allowed to rule as a vassal. Later, Malik Kafur led two campaigns against Deogiri. Later the fort was annexed to the Delhi Sultanate.

Muhammad-bin-Tughluq renamed Deogiri as Daulatabad and and shifted the capital from Delhi in A.D. 1328 for two years, before it was abandoned later.

Fort of Daulatabad was impregnable hill fortress. Other buildings are Char Minar and Chini Mahal.

(11) Gaur (or Lakhnauti)

It is situated in Malda district of West Bengal. It was capital of Sena dynasty during the 11th and the 12th centuries. Prior to the accession of the Sena dynasty, Gauda region was under the control of the Pala dynasty.

In 1203, Muhammad Bakhtiyar Khilji invaded it. The city was destroyed during Sher Shah’s invasion and later reconstructed by Humayun.

Monuments of Gaur: Kadam Rasul mosque, Golden Mosque, Lotan Mosque, Firoz Minar. Tomb of the Sufi saint Makhdum Shaikh Akhi Siraj.

(12) Halebid (or Dwarsamudra)

It is in Hassan district of Karnataka. It was the capital of the Hoysala kings in 10th-12th century, who became prominent in the region during the later period of the Chalukyas of Kalyani. Malik Kafur, the commander of Alauddin Khilji invaded it in 1310 A.D.

The temple complex comprises two main Hindu temples, the Hoysaleswara and Kedareshwara temple and two Jain basadi. The two Nandi images on the sides of the Hoysaleswara temple are monoliths.  Soapstone was used for the construction of these temples.

The temple’s walls of the temple are covered with an endless variety of depictions from Hindu mythology, animals, birds and shilabalikas or dancing figures. The Jain basadi are equally rich in sculptural detail.

(13) Ikkeri

It is situated near Sagar in Shimoga district in Karnataka. It was the capital of the Keladi Nayaka chiefs in 16th and 17th century.

The prime attraction of Ikkeri is the Aghoreshwara Temple which was constructed by the Keladi Nayakas, who were once the feudatories to the Vijayanagara Empire. The temple is dedicated to Siva and built in Dravida Style. There are intricate carvings on the stone walls of the temple which include sculpted elephant, erotica, figurines, old Karnataka manuscript etc.

This temple was ransacked by Tipu Sultan during the invasion on Nayakas of Ikkeri.

(14) Kalibangan

It is situated on left bank of the river Ghaggar in Hanumangarh district of Rajasthan. The site contains both pre-Harappan and Harappan remains, and therein can be seen the transition between the two cultures.

Although the pre-Harappan culture used copper and produced pottery, it had no writing system, and its ruins lack the orderly layout. Houses were made in mostly sun dried bricks.

The Harappan remains include a cemetery and a fortified citadel. The lower town was also a fortified. The fort was made of mud bricks. Due to grid-pattern of town planning, all houses opened out to at least two or three lanes. Houses were built of mostly mud bricks. Burnt bricks were used in drains, wells, bathing platforms, besides fire-altar.

Other important feature and findings:

  • Functionally, pottery can be classified into household pots, religious and burial purposes. Mostly wheel made red pottery are found.
  • Kalibangan is distinguished by its unique fire altars and earliest attested ploughed field. Fire altars  suggest fire worship
  • Rectangular as well as cylindrical seals are found.
  • Terracotta banges, bull etc are found.
  • Pit burial and urn burial has been found.

(15) Jinji (Gingee)

It is situated in Arcot district of Tamil Nadu and faous for Fort. The fort was among the most impregnable fortress in India.

Fort was built during the 15-16th century by the Nayakas, the military leaders of the Vijayanagara Empire and who later became independent kings. In 1565 A.D., Bande Ullah Khan, the Bijapur Genral captured the Fort. The fort passed  to  the  Marathas  under  the  leadership  of  Shivaji  in  1677  AD and then to the Moghuls, Carnatic Nawabs, French under General Bussy. The British captured it in 1761 and surrenderd to Haider Ali in 1780.

The Gingee Fort complex is on the three hills which together constitute a fort complex. It is famous for Kalyan Mahal and the Idgah.

(16) Burzahom

It is situated in northeast of Srinagar. Burzahom was the first Neolithic site to be discovered in Kashmir. Megalithic culture followed Neolithic culture.

It has certain features which differentiate it from other Neolithic cultures of India. For example: people were not acqainted with agriculture amd followed hunting and fishing economy.

Other important feature:

  • Use of a large number of well-polished bone and stone tools. Large number of bone tools in form of harpoons, needles, arrowheads etc is found.
  • Numerous human and animal burials have been found. Humans were buried both primarily and secondarily in pits, mostly dug into the house floors. In secondary burials skulls and long bones were preferred.
  • Graves contained human bones as well as bones of dogs and antlered deer. Probably pet animals were buried along their masters.
  • Dwelling pits and storage pits are found. Storage pits, containing some animal bones, stone and bone tools are found in close proximity to the dwelling pits which are generally circular in shape.
  • The early period pottery is characterised by crude and handmade, the colour mainly of grey and black. Later wheel-made red-ware pottery is found.

(17) Dvarasamudra (or Halebid or Halebidu)

It is in Hassan district of Karnataka. It was the capital of the Hoysala kings in 10th-12th century, who became prominent in the region during the later period of the Chalukyas of Kalyani. Malik Kafur, the commander of Alauddin Khilji invaded it in 1310 A.D.

The temple complex comprises two main Hindu temples, the Hoysaleswara and Kedareshwara temple and two Jain basadi. The two Nandi images on the sides of the Hoysaleswara temple are monoliths.  Soapstone was used for the construction of these temples.

The temple’s walls of the temple are covered with an endless variety of depictions from Hindu mythology, animals, birds and shilabalikas or dancing figures. The Jain basadi are equally rich in sculptural detail.

(18) Nalanda (or Baragaon)

Nalanda is situated in Bihar near Rajagriha. It was an important centre of Buddhist learning in ancient times. Taranatha, the 17th century Tibetan Lama, states that the 3rd century BCE Mauryan Emperor, Ashoka, built a great temple at Nalanda.

Nalanda has a Mahavihara, a large Buddhist monastery which was a famous university during Gupta, Harsha and Pala times. A seal identifies a monarch named Sakraditya (Kumargupta of 5th century) as its founder.

Nalanda flourished under the patronage of the Gupta Empire as well as Emperors like Harsha and later, the rulers of the Pala Empire.

7th century Chinese Pilgrims like Hieun Tsang and I-tsing studied at Nalanda Mahavihara (University). The library at Nalanda Mahavihara was an immense complex called the Dharmaganja. The library not only collected religious manuscripts but also had texts on such subjects as grammar, logic, literature, astrology, astronomy, and medicine.

After  the  decline  of  the  Guptas,  the  most  notable  patron  of  the Mahavihara  was  Harsha,  the  7th-century  emperor  of  Kannauj. Harsha  built  a  monastery  of  brass  within  the  Mahavihara  and  remitted  to  it  the revenues  of  100  villages.   Much  of  what  is  known  of  Nalanda  prior  to  the  8th  century  is  based  on  the travelogues  of  the  Chinese  monks,  Hieun Tsang  and  I-tsing. In his chronicle, I-tsing notes that revenues from 200 villages (as opposed to 100 in Hieun Tsang’s time) had been assigned toward the maintenance of Nalanda.

The  Palas  established  themselves  in  North-eastern  India  in  the  8th century  and reigned until the 12th century. Buddhism in their time was a mixture of the Mahayana practised in Nalanda and Vajrayana, a Tantra-influenced version of Mahayanist philosophy. A number of metallic figures containing references to Devapala have been found in its ruins as well as two notable inscriptions.

Nalanda was ransacked and destroyed by an army of Bakhtiyar Khilji in 1200 CE.

(19) Nagarjunakonda

Nagarjunakonda located on the right bank of the river Krishna in Guntur district of Andhra Pradesh. It was known as Vijaypuri and was the capital of the Ikshvaku kings in the 3rd – 4th century AD who were the successors of the Satavahanas in the eastern Deccan. It was a centre of is Buddhism and was named after Nagarjuna, a 2nd century philosopher of Mahayana Buddhism.

Important Buddhist monuments like Maha Sputa, Chaitya, vihara complex etc are found here.

The site was famous for the great Buddhist Stupa, called Mahachaitya and many others Buddhist monuments. The inscriptions show state-sponsorship of construction of temples and monasteries, through the funding of the queen of Ikshvaku. The original stupa was renovated by the Ikshvaku princess Chamtisiri in the 3rd century AD. The support also spread  beyond  the  noble  classes,  many  non-royal  names being  inscribed  in  the  relics.

Nagarjunakonda was inhabited by a number of merchants and artitions who were organized in guilds.

Nagarjunakonda has revealed the evidence of Neolithics and Meglithic culture.

(20) Nasik

Nasik is situated on the southern bank of river Godavari. The excavation has brought to light the Chalcolithic and Neolithic cultures.

Being located on the ancient trade route connecting the ports of western India and north and south Indian cities, Nasik was a major city during ancient period. The presence of Northern Black Polished Ware indicates its contacts with the north Indian cities.

It became an important settlement in the Saka-Satavahana period during 200 BC – 200 AD. The earliest literary mention of Nasik is in Patanjali’s Mahabhasya which refers to it as Nasikya.

Nasik is famous for the Buddhist rock cut caves which follow a wooden style of construction. The caves are in chaitya halls and viharas mostly dated between 100 BC- 200 AD. These caves, known as Pandulenas, were excavated for the followers of the Bhadrayaniya School, a sect of the Hinayana Buddhism and were patronized not only by local kings and feudatories but also by the merchants and artitions who were growing rich on account of trade with the western world. Incription shows that one cave was the gift of Gautami Balasri, the mother of Gautamiputra Satakarni, a Satavahana king.

This group of caves is also credited with the patronage received from a large number of kings of the Satavahanas (3rd century B.C. – 4th centuries A.D). The inscriptions mentions kings like Krishna, Gautami Putra Satakarni, Vasisthiputra Pulumavi Sri Yajna Satakarni of the Satavahana dynasty.

Two of the earliest monasteries here were carved by the Satavahanas and Kshaharatas. The façade of Chaityagriha is richly carved. The reliefs of Buddha and Bodhisattvas, female deities, etc could also be seen here.

(21) Pattadakal

It is situated near Badami in the Bijapur district of Karnataka. The Chalukyas of Badami constructed rock cut and structural temples at Pattadakal around the 7th century AD. The most famous temple is Virupaksha temple.

There are ten temples at Pattadakal, including Jain sanctuary. Some temples show Northern style while other Southern Style of architecture. Papanatha temple is the fusion of both styles.

Pattadakal continued to be an important centre under the Rashtrakutas and the Kalyani Chalukyas.

There are numerous Kannada inscriptions at Pattadakal.

(22) Penugonda (or Penukonda)

It is located in West Godavari district of Andhra Pradesh. This region was controlled at different points in history by the Hoysalas, Chalukyas, Vijayanagar, Nawabs, Maratha chieftain Murari Rao, Tipu Sultan, Nizam and British rule after it was ceded to the British by the Nizam of Hyderabad.

It was a melting pot of different religions but the town and fort were established by early Hoysala kings, who were practitioners of Jainism. Because of its ancient Jain history and presence of many temples it is revered places for Jains.

Penugonda is treasure house of many temples. The famous Sri Vasavi Kanyaka Parameswari temple is located here.

The famous Babaiah Dargah is located here. Hazrath Baba Fakruddin was a great Sufi Saint of 12th century. He is called Babaiah by the local people.

A famous medieval fort is also located in Penukonda.

 (23) Eran

Eran, also known as Airkina, is in Sagar district, Madhya Pradesh. This city was under Gupta Empire. The archaeological site nearby Eran has revealed several Gupta inscriptions. A contemporary epigraphic inscription of Samudra Gupta (335-380 AD) is found here. It mentions that a part of western Mawa was annexed by Chandra Gupta.

An inscription at Eran dated 510 AD gives the first concrete evidence of Sati in ancient India.

Eran had a number of Vishnu shrines of Gupta period but only some remains. A Vishnu temple at Eran with varah is famous.

(24) Purandar Fort

Purandar Fort is about is 50 km southeast of Pune. It is related to the rising of Shivaji against the Adil Shahi Sultanate of Bijapur and the Mughals.

The earliest mention of Purandar is in the Yadava era (11th century). Purandar fell into the hands of Muslim invaders who further fortified it in 14th century.

During the early rule of the Bijapur and Ahmednagar kings, Purandar was among the forts directly under Government. In 1596, when Bahudar Shah of Ahmednagar sultanate granted Maloji Bhosale (grandfather of Shivaji) Pune, the fort of Purandar was included as well.

The Treaty of Purandar was signed on June 11, 1665, between Jai Singh I, who was commander of Aurangzeb, and Shivaji. Shivaji was forced to sign the agreement after Jai Singh besieged Purandar fort. This truce did not last long as Shivaji revolted against Aurangzeb and recaptured Purandar only five years later in 1670. Thereafter, Shivaji spent prolonged periods of time here.

Under the Peshwas, Purandar was a stronghold to which they retreated whenever Pune, their capital, was under attack.

(25) Gulbarga (or Kalburga)

Gulbarga is situated in Karnataka. It was made capital by the Bahmani Sultan Alauddin Hasan Bahmani in the 14th century. In 1425, Ahmed Shah made Bidar his capital and the glory of Gulbarga was eroded.  Later it was ruled by the Nizams of Hyderabad through the 18th to the 20th century.

Gulbarga Fort was built after the decline of the Chalukyas in the 12th century by Raja Gulchand of the Warangal Kakatiyas and was expanded and improved to its grandest state by the Bahmani Sultans.  The structure is one of the earliest examples of the cross between the Indian and the Persian architectural styles and was built using lime mortar and granite.

The mausoleum of Khwaja Banda Nawaz, a Sufi saint of the Chishti order is in Gulbarga.

Basaveshwara Temple was built in the 12th century by the Lingayat Saint Basaveshwara. The temple has stone carved pillars, towers and various flowers, elephants and garuda on the temple walls.

(26) Sasaram

Sasaram is in Bihar. It is the birthplace of the Afghan king Sher Shah Suri. Sher Shah Suri’s red sandstone tomb, built in the Indo-Afghan style stands in the middle of an artificial lake at Sasaram. It borrows from the Lodhi style.

The fort of Sher Shah Suri at Rohtasgarh is in Sasaram. This fort has a history dating back to 7th century AD. It was built by Raja Harishchandra in the name of his son Rohitashwa and houses the Churasan temple, Ganesh temple, diwan-e khas, diwan-e-aam, and various other structures dating back to different centuries.

(27) Sikandara

It is located in Uttar Pradesh on the out skirt of the Agra City. It is famous for the Akbar’s Tomb. The mausoleum was completed by using red sandstone during the lifetime of Akbar in a garden but the topmost portion of marble was constructed by his son Jahangir.

(28) Tanjore (or Tanjavur)

Thanjavur, formerly Tanjore, is an important center of religion, art, and architecture.

The city first rose to prominence during the reign of Medieval Cholas when it served as the capital of the Chola Empire. After the fall of Cholas, the city was ruled by various dynasties like Pandyas, Vijayanagar Empire, Nayakas and Marathas.

Most of the Chola Temples, which are UNESCO World Heritage Monuments, are located in and around Thanjavur. The foremost among these are the Brihadeeswara Temple. Built in the 11th century by the Chola king Raja Raja Chola I, the temple is dedicated to the Hindu god Shiva. An enormous Nandi (second largest in India), carved out of a single block of granite, guards the entrance of the sanctuary.   The walls of the sanctum are covered with wall paintings from the Chola and Nayaka periods. It is replicated in the Gangaikonda Cholesvarar Temple constructed by Raja Raja’s son Rajendra Chola I.

Thanjavur is home to Tanjore painting, a painting style unique to the region. Thanjavur painting dates back to early 17th century, the period of Nayakas of Thanjavur, who encouraged art, classical dance, music, literature.The Saraswati Mahal Palace was started by the Nayakas of Madurai around 1500 AD, but was completed by the Maratha ruler of Thanjavur.

Many epigraphs, inscriptions, coins etc belonging to different kings have been discovered from here.

(29) Kausambi

It is located on the bank of river Yamuna in Uttar Pradesh. It was the capital of Vatsa, a Mahajanapada of the 6th century B.C. One of the Ashokan Pillars is found here. It was a major centre of trade in ancient India.

The Chinese pilgrim Hieun Tsang visited the city in the 7th century A.D.

Excavations show the pre-historic settlements dating back to 2nd millinium B.C.

The excavation also unearthed painted grey ware pottery, trace of iron etc pointing to a later Vedic settlement.

(30) Mamallapuram (Mahabalipuram)

It is located in Tamilnadu. Mahabalipuram is a town in Kancheepuram district in the Tamil Nadu. It was largely developed by the Pallava King Narsimhavarman Mamalla in the 7th century AD.

It is famous for Pallava monuments. Temples here were built largely during the reigns of Narasimhavarman and his successor Rajasimhavarman and show the movement from rock cut architecture to structural building. The monuments are mostly rock cut and monolithic and constitute the early stages of Dravidian architecture. They are constituted by cave temples, monolithic rathas, sculpted reliefs and structural temples.

The Group of Monuments at Mahabalipuram has been classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Famous monuments are:

(a) Descent of the Ganges – a giant open-air rock relief

(b) Pancha Rathas (Five Chariots) – Of the nine monolithic temples found in Mahabalipuram, the most important are Five Rathas known after the famous five Pandava brothers of the Mahabharata fame. Each of these is carved from one single large piece of granite stone.

(c) Shore Temple, a structural temple along the Bay of Bengal with the entrance from the western side away from the sea.

Mamallapuram was a port city of the Pallavas. They used the port to launch trade and diplomatic missions to Sri Lanka and Southeast Asia. An 8th-century Tamil text written by Thirumangai Alvar described this place as Sea Mountain ‘where the ships rode at anchor bent to the point of breaking laden as they were with wealth, big trunked elephants and gems

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