[Solution] – Thursday History and Culture Quiz #5

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Q.1) The Partition of Bengal made by Lord Curzon in 1905 lasted until
a) The First World War when Indian troops were needed by the British and the partition was ended
b) King George V abrogated Curzon’s Act at the Royal Durbar in Delhi in 1911
c) Gandhiji launched his Civil Disobedience Movement
d) The Partition of India in 1947 when East Bengal became East Pakistan

Explanation– Partition of Bengal was division of Bengal carried out by the British viceroy in India, Lord Curzon. Bengal, Bihar, and Orissa had formed a single province of British India since 1765. By 1900 the province had grown too large to handle under a single administration. East Bengal, because of isolation and poor communications, had been neglected in favour of west Bengal and Bihar. Though, it was termed as an administration work but in reality it was a move by British to break the spirit of Nationalism in Bengal.

The arrival of King George V in 1911 in a royal durbar in Calcutta announced the reversal of partition move and also announced the transfer of capital of British India to the newly built city near Delhi.

Q.2) What was/were the object/objects of Queen Victoria’s Proclamation (1858)?
1. To disclaim any intention to annex Indian State
2. To place the Indian administration under the British Crown
3. To regulate East India Company’s trade with India

Select the correct answer using the code given below.
a) 1 and 2 only
b) 2 only
c) 1 and 3 only
d) 1, 2 and 3


Explanation- This is what the proclamation reads:

“We hereby announce to the Native Princes of India that all treaties, engagements made with them by or under the authority of the Honorable East India Company are by us accepted, and will be scrupulously maintained, and We look for a like observance on their part. We desire no extensions of Our present territorial possessions ; and while We will permit no aggression upon Our dominions or Our Rights to be attempted with impunity, We shall sanction no encroachment on those of others, We shall respect the rights, dignity, and honor of Native Princes as Our own ; and we desire that they—as well as our own subjects—should enjoy prosperity, and that social advancement, which can only be secured by internal peace and good government. We hold ourselves bound to the Natives of Our Indian territories by the same obligations of duty, which bind us to all Our other subjects, and those obligations by the Blessing of God, we shall faithfully and conscientiously fulfill….. ……And it is our further will that, so far as may be, our subjects, of whatever race or creed, be freely and impartially admitted to offices in our service, the duties of which they may be qualified, by their education, ability, and integrity, duly to discharge”

It is clear from the proclamation that, statement 1 and 2 are declared under it. Statement 3 is wrong as its trade was not regulated under it.

Q.3)  The Chinese traveller Yuan Chwang (Hiuen Tsang) who visited India recorded the general conditions and culture of India at that time. In this context, which of the following statements is/are correct?

  1. The roads and river-routes were completely immune from robbery.
  2. As regards punishment for offences, ordeals by fire, water and poison were the instruments for determining the innocence or guilt of a person.
  3. The tradesmen had to pay duties at ferries and barrier stations.

Select the correct answer using the codes given below.
a) 1 only
b) 2 and 3 only
c) 1 and 3 only
d) 1, 2 and 3


Explanation- As per this journal

Hiuen-Tsang (or Yuan Chwang), a Chinese Pilgrim, visited India during the reign of Harsha. His object was to secure authentic Buddhist scriptures and visit places of Buddhist interest. Statement is ironical. Huen Tsang himself was robbed various number of times.

He reported that four ordeals by which the innocence or guilt of an accused person is determined. These are by water, by fire, by weighing, and by poison. Statement 2 is correct.

Hiuen-Tsang reported that taxes were light during that time and tradesmen go to and fro bartering their produce and merchandise after paying light duties at ferries and barrier stations. Statement 3 is correct.

Q.4)  The religions of early vedic Aryans was primarily of
a) Bhakti
b) Image worship and Yajanas
c) Worship of nature and Yajanas
d) Worship of nature and Bhakti

Explanation- Early vedic aryans worshipped nature and did Yajanas. This is basic question from NCERT.

Q.5)  Regarding the Indus Valley Civilization, consider the following statements:

  1. It was predominantly a secular civilization and the religious element, though present, did not dominate the scene,
  2. During this period, cotton was used for manufacturing textiles in India.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
a) 1 only
b) 2 only
c) Both 1 and 2
d) Neither 1 nor 2


Explanation- Both the statements are correct as Indus Valley Civilization was a secular civilization. Cotton and wheat were found in IVC, as per this BBC link Presence of these two proves presence of irrigation.

Q.6) The Ilbert Bill controversy was related to the
a) imposition of certain restrictions to carry arms by Indians
b) imposition of restrictions on newspapers and magazines published in Indian languages
c) removal of disqualifications imposed on the Indian magistrates with regard to the trial of the Europeans
d) Removal of a duty on imported cotton cloth

Explanation- The Ilbert Bill was a bill introduced in 1883 for British India by Lord Ripon that proposed an amendment for existing laws in the country at the time to allow Indian judges and magistrates the jurisdiction to try British offenders in criminal cases at the District level, something that was disallowed at the time. Hence the disqualifications were aimed to be removed at.

Q.7)  Lord Buddha’s image is sometimes shown with the hand gesture called ‘Bhumisparsha Mudra’. It symbolizes
a) Buddha’s calling of the Earth to watch over Mara and to prevent Mara from disturbing his meditation
b) Buddha’s calling of the Earth to witness his purity and chastity despite the temptations of Mara
c) Buddha’s reminder to his followers that they all arise from the Earth and finally dissolve into the Earth, and thus this life is transitory
d) Both the statements (a) and (b) are correct in this context

Explanation- Bhumisparsha translates into ‘touching the earth’. It is more commonly known as the ‘earth witness’ mudra. This mudra, formed with all five fingers of the right hand extended to touch the ground, symbolizes the Buddha’s enlightenment under the bodhi tree, when he summoned the earth goddess, Sthavara, to bear witness to his attainment of enlightenment and to witness his purity despite temptation of Mara. Mara in Buddhism, is the demon that tempted Gautama Buddha by trying to seduce him with the vision of beautiful women who, in various legend.

Q.8) With reference to the guilds (Shreni) of ancient India that played a very important role in the country’s economy, which of the following statements is /are correct?

  1. Every guild was registered with the central authority of the State and the king was the chief administrative authority on them.
  2. The wages, rules of work, standards and prices were fixed by the guild.
  3. The guild had judicial powers over its own members.

Select the correct answer using the codes given below :
a) 1 and 2 only
b) 3 only
c) 2 and 3 only
d) 1, 2 and 3

Explanation– All statements are correct as per Romila Thapar’s book

Q.9) Consider the following statements:

  1. ‘Bijak’ is a composition of the teachings of Saint Dadu Dayal.
  2. The Philosophy of Pushti Marg was propounded by Madhvacharya.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
a) 1 only
b) 2 only
c) Both 1 and 2
d) Neither 1 nor 2

Explanation- As per NCERT class7 and class 12th, Kabir’s ideas were collected and preserved in Bijak by Kabirpanth in varansai, UP. So statement 1 is wrong. As per this source, Dadu Dayal who was disciple of Kabir has no composition of him in Bijak because Bijak exclusively contains work ‘only’ of Kabir.

Pushti Marg was propounded by Vallabhacharya. Hence statement 2 is also wrong.

Q.10)  Some Buddhist rock-cut caves are called Chaityas, while the others are called Viharas. What is the difference between the two?
a) Vihara is a place of worship, while Chaitya is the dwelling place of the monks
b)Chaitya is a place of worship, while Vihara is the dwelling place of the monks
c) Chaitya is the stupa at the far end of the cave, while Vihara is the hall axial to it
d) There is no material difference between the two


Explanation- This is basic NCERT question. Chaityas were places of worship and Vihar were dwelling places of the monks.

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