UPSC NCRET HISTORY NOTES: TOPIC WISE SOLVED MCQ’s

UPSC HISTORY INDIA: The Vedic Civilization

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1) With reference to Indus Valley Civilisation, consider the following statements:

  1. Milk and its products formed an important part of the diet.
  2. Meat of goat and buffalo was eaten.
  3. The Cow was deemed aghnya.

Which of the statements given above is / are correct?

a) Only 1 and 2                       b) Only 1 and 3                       c) Only 2 and 3                        d) 1, 2 and 3

Ans:     D

Explanation:    In the Rig Vedic period milk and its products-curd, butter, and ghee formed an important part of the diet. There is also mention of grain cooked with milk. Not only were fish, birds, wild animals like boar, antelope and buffalo etc. eaten but on ceremonial occasions the meat of animals which were sacrificed, such as sheep, goat and buffalo etc. was also eaten. The cow was already deemed aghanya “not to be killed” the Vedas prescribe a penalty of death or expulsion from the kingdom to those who kill or injure cows. Hence, the correct answer is option D.

2) Consider the following statements:

  1. The Rig Veda attached great importance to agriculture.
  2. The manure was not used in agriculture by the Rig Vedic people.
  3. Cows, sheep, dogs and asses were domesticated by the Rig Vedic people.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

a) Only 1 and 2                       b) Only 1 and 3                       c) Only 2 and 3                        d) 1, 2 and 3

Ans:     B

Explanation:    The economic life of the Rig Vedic people centred around agriculture, cattle rearing and trade and commerce. Cows, sheep, goats, asses, dogs, buffalos etc. were domesticated. The Rig Veda attached great importance to agriculture. The plough was drawn by the oxen at times in team of six, eight or even twelve. The grains were har-vested with sickles. The manure was also used. From various reference in the Rig Veda it appears that irrigation was also practiced. Hence, the correct answer is option B.

3) Match the following.

List I                                                List II

  1. Rig veda                       1. Collection of songs
  2. Sam veda                     2. Collection of spells and charms
  3. Yajur veda                    3. Collection of hymns
  4. Atharveda                     4. Collection of sacrificial formulae

Code:   A         B          C          D

a)          3          1          2          4

b)          1          3          4          2

c)          1          3          2          4

d)          3          1          4          2

Ans:     D

Explanation:    Rig Veda is a collection of hymns. Samveda is a collection of songs mostly taken from Rigveda Yajurveda is a collection of sacrificial formulae and Atharveda is a collection of spells and charms. Hence, the correct answer is option D.

4) Consider the following statements:

  1. Rig Veda is the Oldest Veda.
  2. Bal Gangadhar Tilak dated Rigveda to 1000 B.C.
  3. Rig Veda does not mention the river Ganga.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

a) Only 1          b) Only 1 and 2                       c) Only 1 and 3                        d) Only 2 and 3

Ans:     A

Explanation:    The Vedas formed the earliest segement of vedic literature and amongst the Vedas, Rigveda is the oldest. Bal Gangadhar Tilak, on astronomical grounds, dated Rig Veda to 6000 B.C. (not 1000 B.C) The Nodisukta hymn of the Rig Veda mention 21 rivers which include the Ganga in the east and the Kugha (Kabul) in the west. Hence, the correct answer is option A.

5) Consider the following statements:

  1. Rig Veda mentions the Himalayas.
  2. Rig Veda does not mention ocean.
  3. The battle of ten kings was fought on the bank of Parushani (Ravi) river.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

a) Only 1 and 2          b) Only 1 and 3                       c) Only 2                     d) Only 2 and 3

Ans:     B

Explanation:    Rig Veda mentions the Himalayas and Mujavant Mountains in the north. It also mentions ocean (Samudra) in connection with river Sindhu and Saraswati falling into ocean. The Ocean is also mentioned in the content of foreign trade. The battle of ten Kings, gives names of ten kings who participated in a war against Sudas who was Bharata king of Taritsur family. The battle was fought on the bank of Parushani (Ravi) river and Sudas emerged Victorious. Hence, the correct answer is option B.

6) With reference to Indus Valley Civilisation, consider the following statements:

  1. Child marriage was in vogue.
  2. The society was patriachial
  3. The widow could not re-marry.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

a) Only 1          b) Only 2                     c) Only 1 and 3                        d) Only 2 and 3

Ans:     B

Explanation:    The unit of Rig Vedic society was family, primarily monogamous and patriachial. Child marriage was not in vogue. There are a few reference to the freedom of choice in marriage. A widow could marry the younger brother of her deceased husband. The wife was husband’s partner in all religious and social ceremonies. Hence, the correct answer is option B.

7) With reference to the Rig Vedic period, consider the following statements:

  1. During this period only copper was used.
  2. The trade and traders were known.
  3. Barter was not in vogue
  4. Money-lending was known.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

a) Only 1, 2 and 3          b) Only 1, 2 and 4       c) Only 3 and 4                        d) Only 2, 3 and 4

Ans:     B

Explanation:    During the Rig vedic period only copper was used for which the general term copper was used for which the general term- “ayas” has been used. In a later period when iron come into use, copper and iron came to be known as lohit ayas and syam ayas respectively. The trade and traders (Vanik) were known in the Rig Vedic era. Barter was in vogue. It has been found that ten cows were quoted as the price for an image of India. The conception of money can be traced in the mention of a gift of 100 nishkas. Money-lending was also known. There is a mention of a eight or a sixteenth part of one being paid either as an interest or part of the principal. Hence, the correct answer is option B.

8) With reference to the Rig Vedic period, consider the following statements:

  1. Personified power of nature was worshipped as goods.
  2. Agni was revered as the messenger between the earth and the heaven.,

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

a) Only 1          b) Only 2                     c) Both 1 and 2                        d) Neither 1 nor 2

Ans:     C

Explanation: During the Rig Vedic time the gods worshipped are generally the personified power of nature. The Vedic gods can be classified into three categories, namely terrestrial (prithivisthana), aerial or intermediate (Antarikshsthana), and celestial (dyusthana).

Agni was revered as the messenger between the earth and the heaven. Further, Agni is the only god who is regarded as present among all the categories of gods. Hence, the correct answer is option C.

9) Which of the statements given above is / are correct?

  1. The Rig Vedic and the Harappan geography are the same.
  2. Horses were found in both Rig Vedic and Harappan period.

a) Only 1          b) Only 2                     c) Both 1 and 2                        d) Neither 1 nor 2

Ans:     C

Explanation: The geographical distribution of the Harappan sites can be seen in the light of Rig Vedic geography also. Among all the rivers in the Rig Veda the Saraswati is considered to be the most important and sacred and the areas around the Saraswati and its tributaries were the core culture areas. The main area of Harappan civilization is the Saraswati valley where more than 80% of the Harappan settlements are located. Thus, the Rig Vedic and the Harappan geography are the same.

Horse was an important animal in the Vedic period. Horse bones and terracotta figurines have been found at some Harappan sites. Hence, the correct answer is option C.