Thursday, March 24, 2011


6) In which one of the following Smritui is found the statement: “the royal charters were written on cloth or copper plate?
a) Manusmruti
b) Parasharasmruti
c) Yagnyavalkyasmruti
d) Shankhasmruti

Ans: C Yagnyavalkyasmruti. 

The statement is taken from Yagnyavalkya Samruti from Book 1, page 316. It is mentioned in the book of D. C. Sircar on page 66, of the book titled Indian Epigraphy. The book was published in1965 by Motilal Banarsidass Publishers Private Limited. ISBN no 81-208-1166-6. In the chapter III titled Writing Materials, Dr. Sircar has elaborated on the epigraphy and the material used for writing. 

7) The famous Dasarajna (battle of ten kings) is mentioned in
a) Rigveda
b) Yajurveda
c) Samaveda
d) None of the above

: a. Rigveda. 

The battle of ten kings is mentioned in Rig Veda, Mandal 7, hymn 83. Suda of Trtsu family of Bharta Tribe fought against ten kings on the River Purushani that is present River Ravi. Bharata Tribe was assisted by Vashishta and the ten kings were assisted by Vishvamitra. The hymns in which the battle and victory is mentioned invoked Indra and Varun.
The ten tribes were Alina, Anu, Bhrigu, Bhalana, Dasa or Dasyu, Druhyu, Matsya, Parshu, Purus, Pani or Parnis.

The King Suda killed Bheda, one of the independent commander of a tribe without a king.
King Suda was grandson of Devodasa Atithigva . (Mentioned in Devadatta Ramkrishana Bhandarkar's Some Aspects of Ancient Culture' published from Madras.) 

8) In which Vedic Sukta is found the reference to the orgin of the four Varnas?
a) Ushas
b) Purusha
c) Nasadiya
d) Aranyani

b, Purusha Sukta

9) Which one of the following dramas was written by Sriharsha?
a) Kundamala
b) Priyadarshika
c) Karpuramanjari
d) Malati – Madhava

Ans: Sri Harsha wrote
Priyadarshika. His other important works were Ratanvali. Both of them are plays.

In Priyadarshika, it is about the love story of Vatsaraja Udayana with princess Priyadarshika. It is written under the influence of the Kalidasa Malavikagnimitram. (Mentioned in History of Indian Theater 3 Volumes by Manohar Laxman Varadpande.)
(For further material Check Notes and Compilation (Book) by Sumir Sharma) For the notes Contact Iqbal Dua at 9814936936, AooG Enterprises, 36 E, Sarabha Nagar, Ludhiana. or write to us at cshistory at the rate of gmail dot com

10) Against which republican state did Ajatashatru fight for more than 16 years to establish Megadhan Suzerainty over Eastern India?
a) Mallas of Pava and Kushinara
b) Videhas of Mithilai
c) Lichhavis of Vaishali
d) Koliyas of Ramagrama

Ans: c
Lichchavis of Vaishali.

Ajatsatru had raised Magadha Empire by annexing 36 republican states. The major monarchies which he annexed was Kosala, and Vats. He fought the 16 years wars against the Vrijji of Vishali. Vriji was ruled by a confederacy of five tribes among which Lichchavis were one of the dominating tribe. Lichchavi Republic was at that time represented by Chetaka. (derived from multiple articles on Wikipedia).
In Jain accounts, Bimbisara, father of Ajatasatru is mentioned as Srenika and Ajatasatru as Kunika.

Mallas of Pava and Kushinara:
Mallas were one of the sixteen Mahajanapadas. These Mahanajanapadas are mentioned in Anguttara Nikaya of Tripitaka. They occupied the North Central India. It was conquered by Bhima, one of the five Pandus. Their region was divided into nine territories each held by a confederation of clans. Two of the important confederacies had their capital at Kushinara and Pava respectively. Kushinara is present modern Kasia near Gorakhpur and Pava is present modern Padrauna near Kasia. Mahatama Buddha took his last meal at Kushinara. Lord Mahavira took his last meal at Pava or Pavapuri. Mahatama Buddha fell ill at Pava and died in Kushinara. Mahavira took Nirvana at Pava Puri. At the time of the death of Lord Buddha, King Sastipal Mal was ruling at Kushinara.

Mallas are also mentioned in Manusamriti under the category of Vratya Kshatriya.

In Buddhist literature, Mahaparinirbbana Suttanta, they are called Vashista Kshatriya.

Mallas had both form of governments, monarchical as well as republican, at different times. They were also annexed to Magadhan Empire after the death of Buddha.

Videha of Mithilai:
Videha was the kingdom of Seeradwaj Janak, the father of Sita. Mithila was the capital of Videha. The rulers of the Videha were called Janak. The rulers were known for their Vedic knowledge and most of them had been established scholars. The Mithila is present Janakpur in Nepal. The agriculture seems to be the major economic activity of this kingdom. Seeradwaj himself had obtained Sita with the help of a plough from the womb of land. Sita was married to Raghava Ram, the prince of Kosala. Kosala was one of the monarchy annexed by Magadha during the reign of Ajatsatru. The sisters of Sita were also married to the brothers of Raghava Ram. Therefore, Videha was associated with Kosala.

Koliyas of Ramagrama
Koliya was a republican clan having equal status with Sakya clan. Yashodhara, wife of Prince Siddharta (Buddha) belonged to Koliya. The Chief of Koliya was Suppabuddha and father of Yashodhara. The Koliya clan had two capitals namely Ramagrama and Devadaha. A stupa of remains of Buddha stands at Ramagrama in Bhairahawa in Nepal. It is the only undisturbed stupa.

11) The Mahayana Buddhism had two philosophical schools. Which of the following belonged to Mahayana Buddhism?
a) Madhyamika and Yogachara
b) Vijnanavada and Sthaviravada
c) Mahasanghika and Theraveda
d) Acharyavada and Sarvastivada

Ans: a: Madhyamika and Yogachara

According to I-ching's report from India (A. D. 691), Mahayana Buddhism was divided into two schools, the Madhyamika and Yogacara. The main author of Madhyamika school was Nagarjuna.
Other popular name of Madhyamika is Shunyavada. In English translations, it repeatedly termed as Buddhist philosophy or Mahayana Philosophy of Emptiness.
Madhyamika originated with Nagarjuna. Nagarjuna was born around 150 AD in Guntur District of Andhra Pardesh.

Yogachara school of Mahayana developed around 4c. AD. In Sanskrit, it is also called Vigyana Vada. The main text of Yogachara Mahayana is Sandhinirmochana Sutra. The main scholars of this school of Mahayana were Vasubandhu and Asanga. Vasubandhu and Asanga were half brothers.

Vijnanavada and Sthaviravada
Vijnanavada or Vigyanavada is the other name of the theory which is given under Yogachara philosophy of Mahayana. It means Consciousness only theory.

Sthaviravada: Sthaviravada is a Sanskrit word for the Pali word Theravada. Theravada of Sthaviravada is the oldest or the traditionalist school of Buddhism. It is also known as the Teaching of the Elders school. Theravada and Mahasinghika were the schools which developed between the second and third Buddhist council. The first Buddhist council was held in the year when Buddha passed away. It took place in 486 BC. The second council took place in 350 BC. The third council took place 250 BC during the reign of Asoka. The first schism took place between second and third great councils.

Mahasanghika and Theraveda
Mahasanghika and Theravada are the two break up schools of Buddhism. The break up took place between the second and third Great Councils. The head of Mahasanghikas was Mahadeva. The origin of these two schools is mentioned in Mahavamsa.

Acharyavada and Sarvastivada
Sarvastivada is Sanskrit term. The Pali term is Sabbatthivada. It means all exist theory. It is the oldest form of Buddhism which existed along with Theravada (The sayings of the elder.)

Acharyavada is another term for Mahasanghika. The first council was held in Rajagriha. The second at Vaisali. The third at Pataliputra during the reign of Asoka. The third council of Pataliputra was held after the rise of Mahasanhika or Acharyavada. (James Hastings, Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics, Part 13, pp 210.) 

12) Who was the twenty second Tiruthankara?
a) Parsvanatha
b) Rishabha
c) Aristhanemi
d) Neminatha
Neminatha, d
According to Jain religion, there are 24 Trithankaras. The first Trithankara was Rishab. Muni Rishab is mentioned in Rig Veda also. According to Digambaras, all the 24 Trithankaras were men. However, according to Shavetambars, 19th Trithankara, Mallinath was a woman. Parsvanatha was twentry third Trithankar. Mahavira was the twenty fourth Trithankar.
Arithanemi is another name of Neminatha. Neminatha, the 22nd Trinthankara, the cousin of Shri Krishna, is also called Bhagwan Aristhanemi. His name also appears in Rig Veda as that of Adinath Rishab.

13) Directions for erecting stupas and Chaityas, and an account of the contest for
buddha’s Relics to deposit in them is found for the first time in
a) Milindapanha
b) Majjhim Nikaya
c) Mahaparinibbana Sutta
d) Jnanaprasthana Sutra

Ans: C Mahaprinibbana Sutta (Pali).
It is part of Vinay Sutta. Vinay Sutta is part of Tripitakka. 

In it, the last days of Buddha and contest between the different Bhikkshu at the time of Parinirvana is given. It is a long one.
There is another Mahayana Maha Parinivana Sutta which is in Sanskrit. They are two separate books.
Milindapanha: It is also a Buddhist text written in c. 100 BC. It consists of dialogue between Menander I, the Bactrian king with Nagasena. In some of the Pali canons, it is included in the Khuddaka Nikaya.

Majjhim Nikaya: The Sutta Pittaka of Tripitaka of Theravada school, consists of five Nikayas. The second Nikaya is called Majjhim Nikaya. It consists of dialogue between Buddha and his chief disciples. 

14) What is the modern name of Kundagrama Where Mahavira was born?
a) Vaishali
b) Patana
c) Basukunda
d) Paithan

C. Basukunda or Basu Kunda, a village in Vaishali district. 

Vaishali was the capital of Vajjis or Virjis. The Vajjis gave name to the Vajji Janapada. This fact is mentioned in Bhagavati Sutra of Jains and Anguttra Nikaya (Part of Tripitaka) of Buddhists. It is also referred to by Panini and Kautilya. The Vajji Mahajanapada consisted of eight clans. The four leading clans were Vajjis, Lichchavis, Jnatrikass and Videhas. Lord Mahavira was born in Jnatrikass clan which is also mentioned as tribe in numerous books.

Paithan or Parishtana is a city in Aurangabad district of Maharashtra. It was capital of Satavahana Empire. It has found reference even in a Grecian book Periplus Maris Ertharaei or Periplus of Erythraean Sea written by an annonymous writer somewhere around 150 AD. 

15) In Buddhism what does Patimokkha stand for ?
a) A description of Mahayana Buddhism
b) A description of Hinayana Buddhism
c) The rules of the Samgha
d) The questions of King Menander

Ans: c.
The rules of Samgha. 

It is rule of discipline for the Buddhist monks included in Vinaya Pitaka. It is part of Theravada literature. There are 227 rules for Bikkhus and 311 for Bhikkhunis. It is part of Suttavibhanga included in Vinaya Pitaka got compiled by Maha Kassapa and Ananda when there arose some dispute because of monks like Subhadda.

The description of the Mahayana Buddhism is given in Mahayana Sutras. However, the Hinayana Buddhists and many scholars call them heretic sayings.
The description of the Hinayana Buddhism is generally considered to be given in the Palli cannons. The most accepted source is Sutra Pitaka, the first part of Tripitaka.

Milinda Panaho is the book on the questions of King Menander. The questions by Menander or Milind were put to Nagasena. It is part of the Khuddak Nikaya which again is the part of the Tripitaka. 

16) According to Mathura pillar inscription Uditacharya consecrated two Sivalingas named
a) Gutteshwara and Kadambeshwara
b) Nageshwara and Naganatha
c) Kapileshwara and Upmiteswara
d) Nanjundeshwara and Shrishaileswara

Ans: c.
Kapileshwara and Upmiteswara. 

Mathura Pillar inscription belongs to Chandragupta II. Uditacharya was follower of Pasupata Sect.(four in total). He is considered founder of the Pasupata sect, one of the oldest Shaivite Sect. The Mathura Pillar inscription was written in 380 AD.

Uditacharya declares himself to be the tenth descendent of Bhagvat Kaushika, the founder of Maheshvara sect. This fact appears in Vayu Purana and Linga Purana. Bhagvat Kaushika was the disciple of Lakuli, the real Siva Maheshvara. The two Sivalinga were attributed to the teachers of Acharya Upendra.
(This question has also appeared in UGC/NET question number of times.)

Kadambeshwara Temple is a Historical Temple of Banavasi Kadamba age. This is in the village called Heggarani (which means Hegeya Rana - The war field of Hegge, in the vicinity of Kadambas Territory in Karnataka. The temple enshrines the Lord Ganesha.
Gutteshwara or Kutteshwara is a village in Kundapura in Karnataka State. The place is more popular for the lake of that name and the temple of Lord Shiva. It is also called Kotilingeshwara temple . There are other temples dedicated to other deities also.

Nageshwara and Naganatha:
Nageshwara or Nageswara Jyotirlinga is one of the 12 Jyotirlinga mentioned in the Shiva Purana. The main temple is in Dwarka in Gujarat. The second temple, which is also called the Negeshwara Jyotirlinga and called as Nagnath temple, is in Aundha in Maharashtra. There is a third temple having the same significance and it is called Jageshwara temple at Almora in Uttrakhand state. The Jageshwara temple is considered as the first Jyotirlinga on the earth.

Nanjundeshwara and Shrishaileswara
Nanjundeshwara is a Shiva Temple at Nanjangud town, south of Mysore. It is situated on the banks of Kabini rive, a tributary of Kaveri River in Karnataka State. The town became popular during Ganga dynasty. Later Chola dynasty took over in 11th century. The temple of Nanjundeshwara Temple is an important landmark there. It is one of the biggest temple in Karnataka with numerous small temples dotted around the main temple. The Wodeyars and Tipu Sultan extended liberal patronage to the temple.

17) Pindakara under the Mauryan ruler was a tax
a) A paid in labour
b) on irrigation
c) On non – agricultural produce
d) collected jointly from a village

d. collected jointly from a village.
Pindkara was one of the four taxes which were being collected since the days of Mahajanapada. Initially it was a voluntary contribution in form of a fistful grain at a yagya. Apart from that, there were Shadbhaga that was 1/6 of the produce. Senabhaktam, the tax charged for using the services of the troops.
However, this tax has not been mentioned in the post Mauryan period or Gupta period. Hence, it was collected upto Mauryan period. But it was never imposed on the individual. It was collected from the village as a whole.
The tax on irrigation was Udakabhagam. Apart from that, the tax was levied on the irrigation from wells if the water was drawn by hand and it was called hastaparvartimam. When the water was used for irrigation by withdrawing it from well with the help of Bullocks, then Skandhaparvartimam tax was imposed. They were all irrigation taxes. They were upto ¼ of the produce. The taxes were further differentiated if the water was drawn from a river, tank or lakes.
Shulka is a common term for the tax collected on non-agricultural produce. It was also imposed on trading activity. Secondly, it was a local tax. It was not similar to toll tax which was levied on the commodities coming from outside the regions. Hence, shulka and toll were different taxes and they could be paid and collected collectively. It was tax generally paid by the merchants.
Visti and simhanaka were the two taxes which were paid in labour to the Mauryan ruler. They were basically a tax similar to income, which a person was not in a position to pay in money or other form. He was then liable to pay in form of labour to the king. All the classes and castes were liable to pay such type of labour to the ruler. It was meant to get the services of the artisans which were highly valued during the ancient period. Vishti was a cooperative contribution by all the people for the common cause. When it became a compulsion and the ruler made the artisans to work for them under command and force, then it was called Begar.

18) Consider the following places:
1. Ahiraura 2. Dhauli 3. Girnar
At which of the above place/places do Asoka’s rock edicts occur?
a) 1 only
b) 1 and 2 only
c) 2 and 3 only
d) 1, 2 and 3
Ans: 1, 2, and 3. D. 

Ahriarua is Jhansi District of Uttar Pardesh.
Dhauli is in Orissa more famous of Rock Edict XiV and Kalinga war.
Girnar is in Junagarh District of Gujarat. 

19) Who of the following deciphered the Brahmi script?
a) William jones
b) James prinsep
c) John Marshall
d) E.J.H.Mackay
Ans: James Prinsep: b

James Prinsep was an assay-master in Indian Government Mint, Calcutta. In addition to that he had interest in inscriptions, philology and numismatics. At Calcutta Mint, he had worked under Dr. H. H. Wilson, a known sanskrit scholar and orientalist in his times. He also remained the secretary of Asiatic Society of Bengal. He was also a qualified architecture.
He had won a place in history of India when he deciphered the Brahmi on Ashokan inscription in 1837. Later, in 1915, when it was further collaborated from finding on the inscription that the Devanam Piya Piyadasi and Asoka refers to the same person, it was well confirmed that the inscriptions belong to Asoka.

William Jones: William Jones, generally written as Sir William Jones, was founder of the Asiatic Society of Bengal. He was an English Philologist. He knew 28 languages. The name of his father was also William Jones, who was a known mathematician of his times. He is also famous as an orientalist. He translated Kalidasa AbhigyanaShakultanam into English. He encouraged Charles Wilkins to translate Bhagvat Gita into English.

John Marshall: John Marshall was Director General of Archeological Survey of India from 1902 (Year of founding during the period of Lord Curzon as the Viceroy of India) to 1928. It was during his tenure that the sites of Harappa and Mohenjodaro were excavated and forgotten civilization of Indus Valley came into light before the world.

E. J. H. Mackay: EJH MacKay was a veteran archeologist who had earlier worked on Egypt under the supervision of Sir Flinders Petrie. He took over from Sir John Marshall for continuing the excavation at Mohenjodaro. He died on October 2, 1943 at the age of 63. He was awarded Watumull Prize in 1945 by American Historical Association posthumously. 

20) In which one among the following edicts of Ashoka, his Kalinga war is mentioned?
a) Piller edict I
b) Pillar edict VII
c) Rock edict XI
d) Rock edict XIII
Ans: Rock Edit XIII ; c

The contents of the Rock Edict reads as follows:
Beloved-of-the-Gods, King Piyadasi, conquered the Kalingas eight years after his coronation. One hundred and fifty thousand were deported, one hundred thousand were killed and many more died (from other causes). After the Kalingas had been conquered, Beloved-of-the-Gods came to feel a strong inclination towards the Dhamma, a love for the Dhamma and for instruction in Dhamma. Now Beloved-of-the-Gods feels deep remorse for having conquered the Kalingas.
Indeed, Beloved-of-the-Gods is deeply pained by the killing, dying and deportation that take place when an unconquered country is conquered. But Beloved-of-the-Gods is pained even more by this -- that Brahmans, ascetics, and householders of different religions who live in those countries, and who are respectful to superiors, to mother and father, to elders, and who behave properly and have strong loyalty towards friends, acquaintances, companions, relatives, servants and employees -- that they are injured, killed or separated from their loved ones. Even those who are not affected (by all this) suffer when they see friends, acquaintances, companions and relatives affected. These misfortunes befall all (as a result of war), and this pains Beloved-of-the-Gods.
There is no country, except among the Greeks, where these two groups, Brahmans and ascetics, are not found, and there is no country where people are not devoted to one or another religion.[26] Therefore the killing, death or deportation of a hundredth, or even a thousandth part of those who died during the conquest of Kalinga now pains Beloved-of-the-Gods. Now Beloved-of-the-Gods thinks that even those who do wrong should be forgiven where forgiveness is possible.
Even the forest people, who live in Beloved-of-the-Gods' domain, are entreated and reasoned with to act properly. They are told that despite his remorse Beloved-of-the-Gods has the power to punish them if necessary, so that they should be ashamed of their wrong and not be killed. Truly, Beloved-of-the-Gods desires non-injury, restraint and impartiality to all beings, even where wrong has been done.
Now it is conquest by Dhamma that Beloved-of-the-Gods considers to be the best conquest.[27] And it (conquest by Dhamma) has been won here, on the borders, even six hundred yojanas away, where the Greek king Antiochos rules, beyond there where the four kings named Ptolemy, Antigonos, Magas and Alexander rule, likewise in the south among the Cholas, the Pandyas, and as far as Tamraparni.[28] Here in the king's domain among the Greeks, the Kambojas, the Nabhakas, the Nabhapamkits, the Bhojas, the Pitinikas, the Andhras and the Palidas, everywhere people are following Beloved-of-the-Gods' instructions in Dhamma. Even where Beloved-of-the-Gods' envoys have not been, these people too, having heard of the practice of Dhamma and the ordinances and instructions in Dhamma given by Beloved-of-the-Gods, are following it and will continue to do so. This conquest has been won everywhere, and it gives great joy -- the joy which only conquest by Dhamma can give. But even this joy is of little consequence. Beloved-of-the-Gods considers the great fruit to be experienced in the next world to be more important.
I have had this Dhamma edict written so that my sons and great-grandsons may not consider making new conquests, or that if military conquests are made, that they be done with forbearance and light punishment, or better still, that they consider making conquest by Dhamma only, for that bears fruit in this world and the next. May all their intense devotion be given to this which has a result in this world and the next.

Further elaborations: 

Pillar Edict I:
It is about the stopping of the animal killing during festivals and abstaining of the non-vegetarian food by the king himself.
The contents are translated as follows:
Beloved-of-the-Gods, King Piyadasi, has caused this Dhamma edict to be written.[1] Here (in my domain) no living beings are to be slaughtered or offered in sacrifice. Nor should festivals be held, for Beloved-of-the-Gods, King Piyadasi, sees much to object to in such festivals, although there are some festivals that Beloved-of-the-Gods, King Piyadasi, does approve of.
Formerly, in the kitchen of Beloved-of-the-Gods, King Piyadasi, hundreds of thousands of animals were killed every day to make curry. But now with the writing of this Dhamma edict only three creatures, two peacocks and a deer are killed, and the deer not always. And in time, not even these three creatures will be killed.

Pillar Edict VII:
It is about the religious freedom to all and peaceful co-existence among the members of the different religions:
The contents of the edict are translated as follows:
Beloved-of-the-Gods, King Piyadasi, desires that all religions should reside everywhere, for all of them desire self-control and purity of heart.[14] But people have various desires and various passions, and they may practice all of what they should or only a part of it. But one who receives great gifts yet is lacking in self-control, purity of heart, gratitude and firm devotion, such a person is mean.

Pillar Edict XI:
In this inscription, Asoka had defined the real meaning of his dhamma. Kindly read it discreetly. No where any Buddhist instruction is given. It can be noted for short notes for main question paper.

The contents of the edict are translated as follows:
Beloved-of-the-Gods, King Piyadasi, speaks thus:[20] There is no gift like the gift of the Dhamma,[21] (no acquaintance like) acquaintance with Dhamma, (no distribution like) distribution of Dhamma, and (no kinship like) kinship through Dhamma. And it consists of this: proper behavior towards servants and employees, respect for mother and father, generosity to friends, companions, relations, Brahmans and ascetics, and not killing living beings. Therefore a father, a son, a brother, a master, a friend, a companion or a neighbor should say: "This is good, this should be done." One benefits in this world and gains great merit in the next by giving the gift of the Dhamma. 


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