Towns, Traders and Craftpersons Class 7 Questions and Answers History Chapter 6
Class 7 History Chapter 6 NCERT Textbook Questions and Answers
Fill in the blanks-
1. The Rajarajeshwara temple was built in ………….. .
2. Ajmer is associated with the sufi saint …………. .
3. Hampi was the capital of the …………….. Empire.
4. The Dutch established a settlement at …………. in Andhra Pradesh.
2. Khwaja Muinuddin Chisti
State whether true or false-
1. We know the name of the architect of the Rajarajeshwara temple from an inscription.
2. Merchants preferred to travel individually rather than in caravans.
3. Kabul was a major centre for trade in elephants.
4. Surat was an important trading port on the Bay of Bangal.
How was water supplied to the city of Thanjavur?
Water was supplied from wells and tanks to the city of Thanjavur.
Who lived in the “Black Towns” in cities such as Madras?
Merchants and artisans (such as weavers) or craftspersons along with the white rulers (European traders) lived in the “Black Towns” in cities such as Madras.
Why do you think towns grew around temples?
I think due to following reasons (or factors) towns grew around temples
- Temple towns represented a very important pattern of urbanisation, the process by which cities develop.
- Temples were offen central to the economy and society.
- Rulers built temples to demonstrate their devotion to various deities. They also endowed temples with grants of land and money to carry out elaborate rituals, feed pilgrims and priest and celebrate festivals.
- Pilgrims who flocked to the temples also made donations.
- Temple authorities used their wealth to finance trade and banking.
- Gradually a large number of priests, workers, artisans, traders, etc.
How important were craftspersons for the building and maintenance of temples?
Craftspersons were very important for the building and maintenance of temples. This can be explained below
- The Panchatas or Vishwkarama community, consisting of goldsmiths, bronzesmiths blacksmiths, masons and carpenters were esseclial for building of temples. They also played an important role in the construction of palaces, big buildings tanks and reservoirs.
- The craftspersons of Bidar were famous for their work in copper and bronze.
- Weavers such as the saliyar or kaikkolars emerged as prosperous communities, making donations to temples.
Why did people from distant lands visit Surat?
Surat in Gujarat was the emporium of western trade during the Mughal period. People from distant lands visited Surat because of the following reasons
- Surat was the gateway of trade with west Asia via the Gulf of Ormuz.
- Surat was also called the gateway of Mecca because many pilgrim ships sailed from here.
- The city was cosmopolitan and people of all castes and creeds lived here.
- There were also several retail and whole sale shops selling cotton textiles. The textiles of Surat were famous for their gold lace borders (zari) and had a market in West Asia, Africa and Europe.
- The state build numerous rest-hones to take care of the needs of people from all over the world who came to the city.
- There were magnificent buildings and innumerable pleasure parks.
- Surat hundis were honoused in the far-off markets of Cairo in Egypt, Basra in Iraq and Antwerp in Belgium.
In what ways craft production in cities like Calcutta different from that in cities like Thanjavur?
Craft production in cities like Calcutta were different in the following ways from that in cities like. Thanjavur
- The spurt in demand for good like textiles led to a great expansion of the crafts of spinning, weaving, bleaching, dyeings etc, with more and more people taking them up in cities like Calcutta and other big towns of the time.
- Indian textile designs became increasingly refined. They had to reproduce the designs supplied to them by the company agents.
- However, this period also saw the decline of the independence of craftsperson. They now began to work on a system of advances which meant that they had to weave cloth which was already promised to European agents.
- The weavers of cities like Calcutta had no longer had the liberty of selling their own cloth or weaving their own patterns. They had to reproduce the designs desired by the foreigners.
- Craftsmen and artisans (such as weavers) were moved in to the Black Towns established by the European Companies within these new cities (Calcutta, Bombay and Madras). The native Craftpersons were confined here while the “white” rulers occupied superior residence of Fort St. William in Calcutta.
Craft production in Thanjavur
The craftsmen of Thanjavur used to get all praise from rulers as well as from the towns people or local as well as outside visitors. They constructed temples, big beautiful palaces, buildings, tanks, water reservoir, pavilions or mandapas etc. Some craftsmen made clothes and jewellery, cloth for flags to be used in the temple festivals, fine cottons for the king and nobility and coarse cotton for the masses.
Some distance away at Svanimalai, the sthapatis or sculptors used to make exquisite bronze idols and tall, ornamental bell metal lamps.
Chola bronze status were made using the “lost wax” teachnique. The craftsmen use to take loan from temple authorities. They were free to produce or sell their products per their will.
They were not forced by the company agents.
Compare any one of the cities described in the chapter with a town or a village with which you are familiar. Do you notice any similarities or differences?
The city of Hampi-
- Hampi is located in the Krishna-Tungabhadra basin, which formed the nucleus of the Vijayanagra Empire, founded in 1336.
- The magnificent ruins at Hampi reveal a well fortified city.
- The architecture of Hampi was distinctive. The buildings in the royal complex has splendid arches, domes and pillared halls with niches for holdings sculptures. They also had well planned orchards and pleasure gardens with sculptured motifs such as the lotus and corbels.
- Temples were the hub of cultural activities and Devadasis (temple dancers) performed before the deity, royalty and masses in the many pillared halls in the Virupaksha (a form of Shiva) temple. The Mahanavami festival known today as Navaratri in the South, was one of the most important festivals celebrated at Hampi.
Comp arison with small city or town-
- Ajmer is in Rajasthan. It was the capital of the Chauhan Kings in the twelfth century. Later on Ajmer become the sub headquarters under the Mughals.
- Ajmer remained a famous pilgrimage centre of the Hindus. There is a Holy water tank at Puskar near Ajmer. There is a world wide famous temple of the Brahmaji (in cleat or of the universe).
- Ajmer also provides an excellent example of religious co-existence, Khwaja Muinuddin Chisi, the celebrated sufi-saint who settled there in the twelfth century, attracted devotees from all creeds.
What were the problems encountered by merchants ? Do you think some of these problems persist today?
I. Problems encountered by Merchants-
- The merchants had to pay levied taxes to zamindars or to local temples, who had got the right/to collect taxes from zamindars.
- Some merchants had to form associations (such as horse traders) with headmen who negotiated on their behalf with warriors brought horses.
- Since merchants had to pass through many kingdoms and forests they usually travelled in carvans and formed guilds to protect their interests. These guilds traded extensively both with in the peninsula and with south-east Asia and China.
- The Indian merchants face the European companies and merchants as big competitors during sixteenth, seventeenth, eighteenth and even nineteenth and first half part of the twentieth century also. During the rule of the Britishers and the Portuguese they were not protected and they failed in the field of foreign trade as the foreign rulers always favoured the Europeans.
II. Yes I think some of the problems persist even today before the merchants—
- To maintain good quality, latest design, good packing and reasonably low prices.
- In the age of liberalism and globalization there is perfect and open competition. India’s technology is not as advance as it is of the western countries.
- The merchants had to face the anti-social elements and some time hard steps and strict taxation laws and regulations.
Find out more about the architecture of either Thanjavur or Hampi, and prepare a scrap book illustrating temples and other buildings from these cities.
The Architecture of Hampi
1. Hampi was in the modem Karnataka state.
2. It was founded by Harihara and Bukka Raya in middle of 14th century.
3. It flourished in Deccan between 1336-1565 A.D.
4. It was the capital of Vijayanagara Empire.
5. The mins of the Hampi is scattered in an area of about 26 sq. kilometres.
6. Hampi was capital because of its strategic location. This capital city was protected in northern side by river Tungabhadras and on other three sides by rocky ridges.
7. The magnificent mins at Hampi reveal a well fortified city. Mortar or cementing agent was used in the construction of these walls and the technique followed was to wedge them together by interlocking.
8. Domingo Paes, who came in the sixteenth century in India described Hampi in the following manner
At the entrance of the gate where those who came from Goa, this king has made within it a very strong city fortified with wall and towers, these walls are not like those of other cities but are made of very strong mansonry such as would be found in few other parts, and inside very beautiful rows of buildings made after their manmer with flat roofs.
9. The artistic characteristics of Hampi are very distinctive and impressive
The buildings in the royal complex had splendid arches, domes and pillard halls with niches for holding sculptures. They also had well planned orchards and pleasure gardens with sculptural motifs such as the lotus and corbels.
10. In its heyday in the fifteenth-sixteenth centuries, Hampi bustled with commercial and cultural activities.
11. Moors (a name used collectively for Muslim merchants), Chettis and agents of European traders such as the Portuguese, thronged the market of Hampi.
12. Hampi was an important centre of spices and cotton trade. It had its trade relations with Persians, Arabian, Burma and China. There were about 300 ports at Hampi to facilities the movement of goods.
13. Hampi was also famous for fabulous palaces and grand temples. Temples were the hurb of cultural activities and Devadasis (temple dancers) performed before the deity, royalty and masses in the many pillared halls in the Virupaksha (a form of Shiva) temple. The Mahanavami festival, known today as Navaratri in the south, was one of the most important festivals celebrated at Hampi.
14. Every road, every path and each and every’ monument at Hampi speaks the same language of its glory and beauty.
15. Archaeologists have found the Mahanavami platform where the king received guests and accepted tribute from subordinate chiefs. From here he also enjoyed dance and music performances as well as wrestling bonds.
16. Hampi fell into ruin following the defeat of Vijayanagara in 1565 by the Deccani Sultans the rulers of Golconda, Bijapur, Ahmadnagar. Bera and Bidar.
Find out about any present day pilgrimage centre. Why do you think people go there? What do they do there ? Are there any shops in the area? If so, what is bought and sold there?
1) Amritsar is a famous present day pilgrimage centre for Sikhs and Hindus. It is a border town in the Punjab. It is mainly sacred place of sikhs. It is very famous for Golden Temple.
2) The city was founded by Guru Ram Dass. I think people go there due to different reasons.
- It is very popular due to Golden Temple Sahib.
- The Gurudwara Sahib is constructed in between a holy water-tank. It is golden in colour as well as covered with the Golden metal (cover). Its design, art-work, architecture etc. are very impressive and attractive.
- People take a dip in holy tank.
- The people from different parts of India and rest of the world come here.
- The 400th Anniversary of Amritsar was celebrated with great gusto in October, 1977.
- Amritsar was in the world news, when the army stormed the Golden Temple in June, 1984 to flush out the extremists who were determined to undermine the unity and integrity of India.