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IAS Prelims Exam: Ancient History NCERT Questions: The Vedic Civilisation

Jun 14, 2016 15:05 IST

    Old edition of NCERT Books are still high in demand for UPSC IAS Exam Preparation because it has extensive coverage of the topics given in the UPSC IAS Exam syllabus. For the aspirants of UPSC IAS Prelims Exam, it is very necessary to do practice more and more number of questions of every subject as much as he/she can. Solving questions, will help UPSC IAS aspirants to gain confidence and can train the mind in the exam like condidtions.

    Here, we have provided Multiple Choice Questions of Ancient Indian History which have been created from the old edition of NCERT book, go and check your level of your Preparation of IAS Prelims Exam.

    1.    Consider the following statements regarding the source of Vedic Civilisation:
    I.    The most important source of Vedic Civilisation is the Vedas.
    II.    The Vedas are neither any individual religious work nor a collection of definite number of books compiled at a particular time.
    III.    It consists of three successive classes of literary creations.

    Which of the following statement(s) is/are correct?
    a.    Only I
    b.    I and II
    c.    II and III
    d.    All of the above

    Answer: d

    Explanation:

    The most important source is the Vedas. Veda means "knowledge". The Vedas are neither any individual religious work nor a collection of definite number of books compiled at a particular time.

    The Vedic literature had grown in the course of many centuries and was handed down from generation to generation by word of mouth. It consists of three successive classes of literary creations. Some of these still exist, but many have been completely lost forever.

    2.    Consider the following statements regarding the four Vedas
    I.    Rig-Veda is a collection of hymns
    II.    Samveda is a collection of songs mostly taken from Rig Veda
    III.    Atharvaveda is a collection of sacrificial formulae

    Which of the following statement(s) is/are correct?
    a.    Only I
    b.    I and II
    c.    II and III
    d.    All of the above

    Answer: b

    Explanation:

    The Vedas:
    A collection of hymns, prayers, charms, litanies and sacrificial formulae. There are four Vedas, namely:

    • RigVeda - a collection of hymns
    • Samveda - a collection of songs mostly taken from Rig Veda
    • Yajurveda - a collection of sacrificial formulae
    • Atharvaveda - a collection of spells and charms

    The Vedas formed the earliest segment of Vedic literature and amongst the Vedas, RigVeda is the oldest.

    3.    As per the pious Hindus who have always laid stress upon their divine origin, which of the following was not created by man?
    a.    Rig Veda
    b.    Samveda
    c.    Atharveda
    d.    None of the above

    Answer: d

    Explanation:

    The hymns of the Vedas are attributed to rishis, pious Hindus have always laid stress upon their divine origin. Thus, the Vedas are called apaurusheya (not created by man) and nitya (existing in all eternity) while the rishis are known as inspired seers who received the mantras from the Supreme deity.

    4.    Consider the following statements regarding the Boghaz-Koi inscription:
    I.    Boghaz-Koi is an inscription of 1400 B.C. which prove that Rig Veda must have come into existence much before that date.
    II.    Boghaz-Koi has mentions of the names of Vedic gods Indra, Varuna, Mitra and the two Nasatyas.
    III.    The BoghazKoi inscription records a treaty between the Hittite and the Mitanni Kings and these gods are cited as witness to this treaty

    Which of the following statement(s) is/are correct?
    a.    Only I
    b.    I and II
    c.    II and III
    d.    All of the above

    Answer: d

    Explanation:

    On the analogy of the language of Avesta, some scholars opined that the date of Rig Veda may be 1000 B.C. But the fact that some of the Vedic gods namely Indra, Varuna, Mitra and the two Nasatyas are mentioned in Boghaz-Koi (Asia Minor) inscription of 1400 B.C. prove that Rig Veda must have come into existence much before that date.

    The BoghazKoi inscription records a treaty between the Hittite and the Mitanni Kings and these gods are cited as witness to this treaty, exactly the way even today oath is taken in the courts and on assumption of a public office in the name of god.

    5.    Consider the following statements regarding the age of Vedic Civilisation:
    I.    Bal Gangadhar Tilak, on astronomical grounds, dated Rig Veda to .6000 B.C. to Harmon Jacobi, Vedic civilization flourished between 4500 B.C. and 2500 B.C. and the Samhitas were composed in the latter half of the period.
    II.    Famous Sanskritist, Winternitz felt that the Rig Veda was probably composed in the third millennium B.C.

    Which of the following statement(s) is/are correct?
    a.    Only I
    b.    Only II
    c.    Both I and II
    d.    Neither I nor II

    Answer: c

    Explanation:

    Bal Gangadhar Tilak, on astronomical grounds, dated Rig Veda to .6000 B.C. According to Harmon Jacobi Vedic civilization flourished between 4500 B.C. and 2500 B.C. and the Samhitas were composed in the latter half of the period.

    Famous Sanskritist , Winternitz felt that the Rig Veda was probably composed in the third millennium B.C. R.K. Mookerjee opined that "on a modest computation, we should come to 2500 B.C. as the time of Rig Veda". G. C. Pande also favours a dale of 300u B.C. or even earlier.

    6.    Consider the following statements regarding the Rig Vedic geography:
    I.    The Nadisukta hymn of the RigVeda mentions 21 rivers which include the Ganga in the east and the Kubha (Kabul) in the west.
    II.    In the north, the RigVeda mentions the Himalayas and Mujavant mountains.
    III.    The RigVedic geography, therefore, covers present-day western Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan, Gujarat, whole of Pakistan and south Afghanistan.

    Which of the following statement(s) is/are correct?
    a.    Only I
    b.    I and II
    c.    II and III
    d.    All of the above

    Answer: d

    Explanation:

    From the names of rivers, mountains and regions mentioned in RigVeda we have a clear idea of the geographical area in which RigVedic people, who called themselves Aryans, lived. The Nadisukta hymn of the Rig Veda mentions 21 rivers which include the Ganga in the east and the Kubha (Kabul) in the west.

    All rivers like the Yamuna, Saraswati, Sutlej, Ravi , Jhelum and Indus located between the Ganga and Kabul rivers are mentioned not arbitrarily but serially beginning from the east i.e. Ganga to the west i.e. Kubha.

    In the north, the RigVeda mentions the Himalayas and Mujavant mountains. It also mentions ocean (samudra) in connection with rivers Sindhu and Saraswati falling into ocean. The ocean is also mentioned in the context of foreign trade.

    The RigVedic geography, therefore, covers present-day western Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan, Gujarat, whole of Pakistan and south Afghanistan.

    7.    Consider the following statements regarding the Rig Vedic States and its territory:
    I.    The territory known to Vedic people was divided into a number of states-republics and monarchical.
    II.    The battle of ten kings, gives names of ten kings who participated in a war against Sudas who was Bharata king of Tritsus family.
    III.    The ten kings were of the states of Purus, Yadus, Turvasas, Anus and Druhyus along with five others viz Alinas, Pakhtas, Bhalanas, Sibis and Vishanins.

    Which of the following statement(s) is/are correct?
    a.    Only I
    b.    I and II
    c.    II and III
    d.    All of the above

    Answer: d

    Explanation:

    The territory known to Vedic people was divided into a number of states-republics and monarchical. The battle of ten kings, gives names of ten kings who participated in a war against Sudas who was Bharata king of Tritsus family.

    The ten kings were of the states of Purus, Yadus, Turvasas, Anus and Druhyus along with five others viz Alinas, Pakhtas, Bhalanas, Sibis and Vishanins. The battle was fought on the bank of Parushani (Ravi) and Sudas emerged victorious. In the context of another battle of Sudas, Rig Veda mentions people and kings like Ajias, Sigrus, Yakshus etc.

    8.    Consider the following statements regarding Bharatas, the most important people of the Rig Veda:
    I.    The Bharatas were settled in the region between the Krishna and Godavari.
    II.    The Bharatas were belonged to kula, the smallest unit of the states.

    Which of the following statement(s) is/are correct?
    a.    Only I
    b.    Only II
    c.    Both I and II
    d.    Neither I nor II

    Answer: a

    Explanation:

    The Bharatas, who gave their name to the whole country as 'Bharatvarsha’, are the most important people of the Rig Veda. They were settled in the region between the Saraswati and Yamuna.

    Similarly the Rig Veda gives the location of other people like the Purus in the region of Kurukshetra; the Tritsus east of Ravi; the Alinas, the Pakhtas, the Bhalanas and the Sibis west of Indus upto Kabul River and so on.

    9.    Which of the correct ascending order of Political structure of Rig Vedic India?
    a.    Grama > Kula > Vis > Rashtra > Jana
    b.    Kula > Grama > Vis > Jana > Rashtra
    c.    Rashtra > Jana > Grama > Kula > Vis
    d.    Jana > Grama > Kula > Vis > Rashtra

    Answer: b

    Explanation:

    The political structure of RigVedic India may be traced in the following ascending order:

    • The Family (kula)
    • The Village (grama)
    • The Clan (vis)
    • The People Uana)
    • The Country (rashtra)


    10.   Consider the following statement regarding the Brahamana text of Vedic Civilisation:
    I.    The Brahamanas are the collection ancient Vedic texts with commentaries on the hymns of the four Vedas.
    II.    The Brahamanas contain details about the meaning of Vedic hymns, their applications, stories of their origins, etc.
    III.    Chandogya Brahmana, one of the oldest Brahmana includes eight suktas (hymns) for the ceremony of marriage and rituals at the birth of a child.

    Which of the following statement(s) is/are correct?
    a.    Only I
    b.    I and II
    c.    II and III
    d.    All of the above

    Answer: d

    Explanation:

    The Brahmanas are primarily a digest incorporating myths, legends, and the exposition of rituals in the Vedas and in some cases philosophy. Each Vedic shakha (school) has its own Brahmana, many of which have been lost.

    A total of 19 Brahmanas are extant at least in their entirety: two associated with the Rigveda, six with the Yajurveda, ten with the Samaveda and one with the Atharvaveda. Additionally, there are a handful of fragmentarily preserved texts. They vary greatly in length; the edition of the Shatapatha Brahmana fills five volumes of the Sacred Books of the East.

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