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Map Based Questions with Solution- 2022 History Optional Mains Examination

Q.1 Identify the following places marked on the map supplied to you and write a short note of about 30 words on each of them in your Question-cum-Answer Booklet. Locational hints for each of the places marked on the map are given below seriatim: [50 Marks]

(i) Paleolithic site

(ii) Mesolithic site with burials

(iii) Neolithic pit dwelling

(iv) Early village settlement

(v) Neolithic site

(vi) Neolithic-Chalcolithic site

(vii) Harappan UNESCO site

(viii) Megalithic burial site

(ix) Place of Second Sangam

(x) Earliest Satavahana capital

(xi) Place of inscribed statue of Ashoka

(xii) First Gupta hoard of coins

(xiii) Hoard of metal sculptures

(xiv) Ancient port

(xv) Oldest Jesuit church

(xvi) Centre of Gandhara art

(xvii) Buddhist Monastery

(xviii) Place of earliest Vishnu temple

(xix) Shiva and Buddhist temple complex

(xx) Earliest Chaitya Griha

SOLUTION

(i) Paleolithic site

Didwana

  • Didwana in Nagaur district of Rajasthan.
  • It yielded Lower and Middle Paleolithic stone tools.
  • Lower palaeolithic:
    • Large tools made of quartzite or other hard rocks.
    • Include chopping tools, handaxes, and cleavers.
  • Middle Paleolithic:
    • Smaller, lighter flake tools.

(ii) Mesolithic site with burials

Sarai Nahar Rai

  • In Pratapgarh district of U.P.
  • It is stratified Mesolithic settlements.
  • Geometric microliths along with shells and animal bones found.
  • Human burials:
    • Within the habitation area.
    • 13 burials of men, women and child with heads westward.
    • One of the buried skeletons had an arrow embedded in its ribs.
    • Microlithic tools, animal bones, and shells were placed as grave goods.
    • An analysis reveals good dental health but some of them suffered from osteo-arthritis.
  • Floor of made of burnt clay and has several fire hearths some with charred bones.
  • Many animals are domesticated type.

Note: There are many other Mesolithic sites nearby.

(iii) Neolithic pit dwelling

Burzahom

  • In northeast of Srinagar, J&K.
  • First Neolithic site of Kashmir.
  • Megalithic culture followed Neolithic culture.
  • Certain features differentiate it from other Neolithic cultures:
    • For example: people were not acquainted with agriculture and 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.
    • Human and animal burials 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.=
      • Pet animals (e.g. dog) were buried along their masters.
    • Dwelling pits and storage pits are found.
    • Pottery:
      • The early pottery:- crude and handmade.
      • Later pottery:- wheel-made.

(iv) Early village settlement

Mehrgarh 

  • In Baluchistan, Pakistan.
  • A Neolithic and Calcolithic site.
  • Neolithic:
    • Small farming and pastoralist village:
    • Planned ancient farm villages.
    • mud brick house (later sun-dried brick)
    • bone tools,
    • a-ceramic.
  • Precursor of IVC.
  • It was later abandoned with Harappan urbanisation.
  • One of the earliest sites with evidence of farming (wheat and barley), herding and metallurgy.
  • One of the earliest cultivation of cotton.
  • Evidence of fishing.
  • Unique discovery:- Dental surgery and related medicinal activities.
  • Figurines of terracotta found.

(v) Neolithic site

Edakkal Rock Shelter Caves

  • In Wayanad district, Kerala.
  • Two natural caves.
  • Pictorial writings indicating the presence of a prehistoric settlement.
  • Carvings of human and animal figures, tools used by humans suggesting the presence of a prehistoric settlement. (Neolithic and Mesolithic age).
  • Tamil and Brahmi Script.
  • It is also a Petroglyphs site.

(vi) Neolithic-Chalcolithic site

Chirand

  • In Saran district of Bihar.
  • Neolithic, Chalcolithic and Iron Age settlements.
  • Neolithic period was earlier than 2500 B.C.
  • Practiced agriculture with evidence of wheat, rice, mung, masur, peas found.
  • The agricultural tools were made of stone and bone.
  • Bone tools are special feature
  • They practised hunting also.
  • Bones of domesticated and wild animals are found.
  • People lived in wattle and daub huts, circular in plan.
  • Microliths are also found.
  • Pottery:
    • Hand-made, ‘red ware’ and BRW.
    • Post firing painting on pottery.
  • Chalcolithic culture: 1600 BCE
    • BRW pottery found.
    • Two phases:
      • The first phase is without iron.
      • Second has iron without NBPW.
  • Later period shows the emergence of the N.B.P.W. culture.

(vii) Harappan UNESCO site

Dholavira

  • In Kutch district, Gujarat.
  • City scape consisted ‘citadel’, a ‘middle town’ and a ‘lower town’,
  • Water conservation system of channels and reservoirs built of stone.
  • Seven Hemispherical constructions found.
  • A coastal route existed linking Lothal and Dholavira to Sutkagan Dor on the Makran coast.
  • Findings:
    • Painted BRW
    • square stamp seals,
    • seals without Indus script,
    • Dholavira signboard: containing ten letters of Indus script. The inscription is the longest in the Indus script.

(viii) Megalithic burial site

Maski

  • In Raichur district, Karnataka.
  • Neolithic-Chalcolithic and Megalithic cultures.
  • Minor Rock Edict of the Mauryan Emperor Ashoka found.
    • First edict of Emperor Ashoka that contained the name Ashoka.
  • Artefacts:
    • Polished stone tools, microlithic blades, and copper rod.
    • Beads of carnelian, agate, chalcedony, shell, coral, glass, and paste.
  • Pottery:
    • Red ware
    • BRW
    • Incised designs on some pottery.
  • Animal bones found.
  • Rock paintings found.
  • Subsistence base:
    • agriculture,
    • animal domestication,
    • hunting.

(ix) Place of Second Sangam

Kapadapuram:

  • Kuadam (also known as Kapadapuram) was the capital of the ancient Pandian kingdom.
  • The second Sangam was convened in Kapatapuram.
  • There were 59 members in this second Sangam, and 1700 poets participated, lasting 3700 years. Starting from Vendercceliyan to Mudattirumaran, 59 Pandiya kings ruled the region during this period.
  • It was the second of the three Tamil Sangams of Classical Tamil literature.
  • This submerged under sea. Second Sangam was presided by Tolakappiyar.
  • Tolkappiyam was the only literary work still extant from the second Sangam at Kapadapuram. Tolkappiyam was authored by Tolkappiyar and is considered to be the earliest work of Tamil literature.
    • In addition to providing insights into Tamil grammar, it also provides insight into the political and socio economic atmosphere of the time period in which it was written.

(x) Earliest Satavahana capital

Dhanyakataka (Amaravati):

  • In Guntur District, Andhra Pradesh.
  • Dhanyakataka was the capital of Satavahanas which ruled in the Deccan around the 1st to 3rd centuries A.D.
  • Meghalithic, BRW and NBPW site.
  • Inscription in Maurya Brahmi found.
  • Buddhist stupa:
    • Buddhist Stupa and Mahachaityas with marble and limestone sculptures.
    • Its carved panels tell the story of Buddha.
  • Chinese traveller Hiuen Tsang visited in 7th century.
  • Ancient School of Arts:
    • Flourished  for  nearly  six  centuries commencing  from  200-100  BC.
    • Patronized first by the Satavahanas and later by the Ikshvakus.
    • Some Buddhist sculptures with Greco-Roman influence.

(xi) Place of inscribed statue of Ashoka 

Kanganahalli:

  • It is on the left bank of the Bhima river in Kalaburagi district in Karnataka.
  • It is situated about 3 km from Sannati and an important Buddhist site where an ancient Maha Stupa was built.
  • In the 1st century BC the stupa at Kanganahalli was constructed, as per the inscriptions referred to as Hama Chaitya and it was patronized by the Hinayana and Mahayana Buddhism during the 3rd and 4th centuries AD.
  • The Kanagamahalli Buddhist Stupa was constructed using locally available limestone.
  • The Maha Stupa is referred as “Adholoka Maha Chaitya” in the Ashoka’s inscriptions.
  • The Kanaganahalli Maha Stupa is the veritable gallery of eminent rulers like King Ashoka and the Shatavahana rulers (Simuka, Pulumavi) are immortalized by depicting their portraits at Kanaganahalli. The portrait of emperor Ashoka is depicted in inscription found at Kanaganahalli.
  • Up to the anda portion of the stupa is available, although majority of the architectural members and the sculptural panels are dislodged from the original position.
  • During the Satavahana period, the Amaravati School of art made a deep impact on the sculptural and architectural forms of Kanaganahalli region.

(xii) First Gupta hoard of coins

Kalighat, Kolkata:

  • In West Bengal
  • In 1783, a fisherman found a treasure hoard of more than 200 Gold Coins near Kalighat. The coins had been placed in a brass pot.
  • Majority of these coins were melted down, only a few handed over to some Museums in England as presentations.
  • The hoard contained the Archer Type coins from the reign of Chandragupta II who had probably annexed Bengal to his Empire, and Kumaragupta I with an abundance in coins from the reign of Vishnugupta and Narasimhagupta, besides a few from the times of Shashanka, a later but important Ruler of Gauda.

(xiii) Hoard of metal sculptures

Kurkihar hoard, Gaya

  • Kurkihar hoard is a set of 226 bronzes, mostly Buddhist and  and five other objects dating to between the 9th and 12th centuries CE, which were found in Kurkihar near Gaya in Bihar.
  • These included Buddhas, Bodhisattvas, Stupas, Bells and ritual objects.
  • The inscriptions found suggest that Kurkihar was once a well known international pilgrimage center.
  • A number of stone images have also been found from the Pala period.

(xiv) Ancient port

Bhrigukachha

  • In Bharuch district, Gujarat.
  • Port at the mouth of Narmada.
  • Ancient centre of trade.
  • A ship building center.
  • The trade route to west made use of monsoon winds.
  • Many goods from the Far East used this port as a terminus for land-sea trade routes.
  • Known to the Greeks, Roman and other western civilizations.
  • Arab traders entered Gujarat via Bharuch.
  • The British and the Dutch had established their business centers.

(xv) Oldest Jesuit church

Basilica of Bom Jesus, Goa

  • The Basilica of Bom Jesus is a Roman Catholic basilica located in the Goa in the Konkan region.
  • Construction work on the church began in 1594. The church was consecrated in May 1605 by the archbishop, Dom Fr. Aleixo de Menezes.
  • This is one of the oldest churches in India. The floor is of marble inlaid with precious stones. Apart from the elaborate gilded altars, the interior of the church is simple.
  • It is both a pilgrimage centre and also the most iconic monument of all the churches and convents of Goa, recognised by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.
  • The basilica is located in Old Goa, former capital of Portuguese India, and holds the mortal remains of St Francis Xavier.
  • This Jesuit church is India’s first minor basilica, and is considered to be one of the best examples of baroque architecture and Portuguese Colonial architecture in India.

(xvi) Centre of Gandhara art

Bamyan

  • In central Afghanistan.
  • Part of the Kushan Empire.
  • Visited by the Chinese travelers Faxian and Xuanzang.
  • Centre of trade and commerce (on the silk route) and of Buddhism. It was a halting place for travellers.
  • Buddha of size 175 feet high, and another of 120 feet were carved from rock. Also mentioned by Xuanzang The statues were destroyed by the Taliban but restored again.
  • 7th-century mural paintings found in caves (use of oil-based paints).
  • UNESCO World Heritage site.

(xvii) Buddhist Monastery

Somapura

  • In Naogaon District, Bangladesh.
  • A Buddhist Mahavihara.
  • Built by Pala king Dharmapala (known from excavation at Paharpur and the seals bearing the inscription).
  • Paharpur pillar inscription mentions Pala kings.
  • Evidence of the rise of Mahayana Buddhism (mainly Vajrayana trend) in Bengal from the 7th century onwards, .
  • UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • According to Tibetan sources, five great Mahaviharas:
    • Vikramashila;
    • Nalanda;
    • Somapura Mahavihara;
    • Odantapuri;
    • Jaggadala.

(xviii) Place of earliest Vishnu temple

Deogarh, Dashavatar Temple

  • In Jhansi district, Uttar Pradesh.
  • Dashavatara Temple:
    • Gupta period temple
    • dedicated to Lord Vishnu,
    • one of the earliest known Panchyatana temples
    • Nagara style and beginning of the Shikhara type of temples.
    • carved figurines of river goddesses Ganga and Yamuna on the doorway to the sanctum sanctorum,
    • Anantshayi Vishnu reclining on a serpent.
    • Sculpture on the Dasawatara temple show classical Gupta style.
  • The fort on the hill of Deogarh is dominated by a cluster of Jain temples.

(xix) Shiva and Buddhist temple complex

Sirpur

  • In Mahasamund district, Chattisgarh.
  • Hindu, Buddhist (Vaishnavism, Shaivism) and Jain monuments.
  • It was considered as the ancient capital of South Koshal and was called at Shreepur.

  • Hindu monuments:
    • Shiva, Vaishnava
    • Lakshmana temple:
      • Brick temple.
      • Most well preserved.
      • Built by Vasata in 7th century AD.
      • Dedicated to Lord Vishnu,
      • The plan of the temple consists of a garbagriha, antarala and a mandapa.
    • Other Hindu monuments include Rama temple, Gandheshwar temple etc.
  • Buddhist monuments:
    • Viharas,
    • Buddha, Pdmapani, Avlokiteshwara statues etc.
    • Some syncretic finds of Hindi and Buddhist.
  • Jain monuments:
    • Ruins of Jain basadi and monastery found.
    • Bronze image of Adinatha (first Tirthankara).

(xx) Earliest Chaitya Griha

Bhaja Cave:

  • Bhaja Caves is a group of 22 rock-cut caves dating back to the 2nd century BC located in Pune.
  • The caves are on an important ancient trade route running from the Arabian Sea eastward into the Deccan Plateau.
  • It belongs to the Hinayana Buddhism.
  • The caves have a number of stupas, one of their significant features.
  • The most prominent excavation is its chaityagriha, a good example of the early development of this form from wooden architecture, with a vaulted horseshoe ceiling.
    • It has Wooden ceiling over Chaitya-griha. Stupa has a hole on top, for inserting wooden umbrella.
    • Verandaha has wooden reliefs showing royal women driving chariots over a demon.
    • The chaitya at Bhaja Caves is the earliest surviving chaitya hall, constructed in the second century BCE.
  • Its vihara has a pillared verandah in front and is adorned with unique reliefs.
  • These caves are notable for their indications of the awareness of wooden architecture.

Note:

  • Any suggestion is welcome. 
  • 16/20 sites have been asked directly from our map material and 18/20 sites could be solved if one reads our map materials and Ancient India notes. 

2 thoughts on “Map Based Questions with Solution- 2022 History Optional Mains Examination”

  1. It can be sultanganj also…..apart from kurkihar……ans kurkihar is near gaya which is west to the point on map…point is near sultanganj its not in gaya district…..
    Also point for megalithic site in karnatka was above raichur district….above maski….its not exactly maski…..can sanganakallu which is just below maski can also be considered??
    If name of place is misspelt or partially wrong written like couldnt remember bom jesus word for church but content written is correct so can it be considered or not?? Same case with second sangam age site name written wrong but content written correct…so can some marks be alloted or not???…….pls reply…..

  2. Apart from edakkal palghat of pallakad can also be considered as it is proved it has neolithic site…..and point was not exactly at edakkal little bit lower than edakkal….

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