NCERT Solutions for Class 7 Social Science History Chapter 6 Towns Traders and Craftspersons
1. Fill in the blanks:
(a) The Rajarajeshvara temple was built in Thanjavur.
(b) Ajmer is associated with the Sufi saint Khwaja Muinuddin Chishti.
(c) Hampi was the capital of the Vijayanagara Empire.
(d) The Dutch established a settlement at Masulipatnam in Andhra Pradesh.
2. State whether true or false:
(a) We know the name of the architect of the Rajarajeshvara temple from an inscription.
(b) Merchants preferred to travel individually rather than in caravans.
(c) Kabul was a major centre for trade in elephants.
(d) Surat was an important trading port on the Bay of Bengal.
3. How was water supplied to the city of Thanjavur?
Water supplied to the city of Thanjavur came from wells and tanks.
4. Who lived in the “Black Towns” in cities such as Madras?
Merchants, artisans such as weavers, native traders and craftspersons lived in the “Black Towns” in cities such as Madras.
5. Why do you think towns grew around temples?
(i) Towns grew around temples because they were often central to the economy and society.
(ii)Rulers built temples to demonstrate their devotion to various deities.
(iii)They also endowed temples with grants of land and money to carry out elaborate rituals, feed pilgrims and priests and celebrate festivals.
(iv)Pilgrims visited the temples and made donations.
(v)Temple authorities invested the wealth in trade and banking.
(vi)Gradually, a large number of priests, workers, artisans and traders settled near the temple to cater to its needs and those of the pilgrims. Thus grew temple towns.
6. How important were craftspersons for the building and maintenance of temples?
(i)Craftspersons were very important for the building and maintenance of temples.
(ii)For example, the skills and services of the Panchalas or Vishwakarma community, consisting of goldsmiths, bronzesmiths, blacksmiths, masons and carpenters, were essential to the building of temples.
(iii)They were also helpful in the artwork in copper and silver like making idols, designing the walls and the roofs.
(iv)Weavers such as the Saliyar or Kaikkolars were prosperous communities which made donations to temples. They also produced cloth for flags to be used in the temple festival.
(v)At Svamimalai, a temple town, the sthapatis or sculptors made exquisite bronze idols and tall, ornamental bell metal lamps.
7. Why did people from distant lands visit Surat?
(i)People from distant lands visited Surat because the city was the emporium of western trade during the Mughal period. It was the gateway for trade with West Asia via the Gulf of Ormuz.
(ii)Surat has also been called the gate to Mecca because many pilgrim ships set sail from here.
(iii)In the 17th century, the Portuguese, Dutch and English had their factories and warehouses at Surat.
(iv)The city had several retail and wholesale shops selling cotton textiles.
(v)The textiles of Surat were famous for their gold lace borders (zari) and the textile was popular in the markets of West Asia, Africa and Europe.
(vi)The local rulers built numerous rest-houses to provide various facilities to the people who visited the city. There were magnificent buildings and many pleasure parks.
(vii)The Kathiawad seths or mahajans (moneychangers) had huge banking houses at Surat. The Surat hundis were honoured in Cairo in Egypt, Basra in Iraq and Antwerp in Belgium.
8. In what ways was craft production in cities like Calcutta different from that in cities like Thanjavur?
Craft production in cities like Calcutta was different from that in cities like Thanjavur in the following manner:
(i) Craftspersons in Thanjavur were independent, whereas in Calcutta they were regulated and dominated by European officials. Thus, there was a decline of the independence of craftspersons.
(ii)In Thanjavur, craftspersons were free to produce their creative and specialized crafts at their will, whereas in Calcutta craftspersons worked on a system of advances which meant that they had to weave cloth which was already promised to European agents.
(iii) The Thanjavur craftspersons had liberty to sell their crafts and textiles, whereas in Calcutta they could not sell their own cloth or weaving their own patterns.
(iv) In Calcutta, they had to reproduce the designs supplied to them by the Company agents.
(v) In Calcutta, the native traders and craftspersons now had to move into the Black Towns established by the European companies within these new cities.