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History — Chapter 8

Medieval India — (B) The Delhi Sultanate

Class 9 - Total History & Civics Solutions


Short Answer Questions

Question 1

Who was the founder of the Slave dynasty in India? Give the other name of this dynasty.

Answer

Qutubuddin Aibak was the founder of the Slave dynasty.

The rulers of this dynasty were also known as Mamluk sultans. Since these Sultans were earlier either the slaves of Turks or were the sons of the slaves, they were called 'Mamluk' which means 'owned'.

Question 2

Why was Qutubuddin known as Lakhbaksh? List any two of his qualities.

Answer

Qutubuddin was known as Lakhbaksh because he was liberal in distributing money.

Two of his qualities were:

  1. He was a brave and capable military general.
  2. He was a man of letters. Scholars like Hasan Nizami and Fakhre Mudir adorned his court.

Question 3

State any two architectural features of Qutub Minar.

Answer

Two architectural features of Qutub Minar are:

  1. It has five storeys tapering as they ascend. Each storey is separated from the other by projecting balcony.
  2. The Minar is a circular tower about 13.8 metres in diameter at the base and tapers to the width of around 3 metres at the summit. It has a circular stairway of 379 steps leading to the top.

Question 4

Mention any two military reforms introduced by Alauddin Khilji.

Answer

Two military reforms introduced by Alauddin Khilji were:

  1. He imported quality horses and started the system of branding horses (dagh) so that the soldiers could not replace them with inferior quality horses.
  2. He introduced the system of chehra which meant giving a kind of identity card for every soldier.

Question 5

How did Alauddin Khilji expand his empire?

Answer

After conquering the bulk of northern India, Alauddin Khilji sent an expedition to Deccan under Malik Kafur. The kingdoms of Devagiri, Warangal, Dwarasamudra and Madurai were conquered but not annexed. Alauddin Khilji knew that it was difficult to control these distant lands from Delhi and also he was only interested in acquiring the wealth of these Deccan kingdoms for the maintenance of his huge army. That is why he forced the rulers of Deccan to accept his overlordship and to pay annual tribute to him.

Question 6

Mention the two controversial steps taken by Muhammad Bin Tughlaq.

Answer

The two controversial steps taken by Muhammad Bin Tughlaq were:

  1. Shifting of Capital from Delhi to Devagiri (Daulatabad) and back to Delhi which caused lots of hardships to the people.
  2. Introduction of token currency or bronze tanka to replace the silver tanka but the experiment failed due to the circulation of counterfeit or fake coins.

Question 7

Who was the commander-in-chief of the army during the Sultanate period? Name the department which dealt with state correspondence during the Sultanate period.

Answer

The Sultan himself was the commander-in-chief of the army during the Sultanate period.

The department which dealt with state correspondence during the Sultanate period was the diwan-i-insha.

Question 8

What was the iqta system?

Answer

The practice of giving grants of revenue from a territory came to be known as the iqta system. Those who were given iqtas were called iqtadars. Out of this grant, the iqtadars had to maintain themselves, their families and some soldiers for use by the Sultan during war.

Structured Questions

Question 1

With reference to the sources of information about the Delhi Sultanate, give the significance of the following:

(a) Inscriptions

(b) Qutub Minar

Answer

(a) Inscriptions — Inscriptions are valuable supplements and not the sole sources of information on the Delhi Sultanate. The inscriptions are found on coins, monuments, milestones and tombstones. Some of the inscriptions are in Sanskrit, some in Arabic and some in both the languages. The first coin issued by Muhammad Bakhtiyar Khilji bears both Arabic and Sanskrit inscription.

(b) Qutub Minar — The Qutub Minar was started by Qutub-ud-din Aibak and was dedicated to the Sufi saint, Qutb-ud-din Bakhtiyar Kaki. It was completed by Iltutmish. It is a circular tower about 13.8 metres in diameter at the base and tapers to the width of around 3 metres at summit. It has a circular stairway of 379 steps leading to the top. It has five storeys separated from each other by projecting balcony. These balconies are supported in such away that the whole structure takes the load of weight. Verses from Holy Quran and some intricate carvings with floral motifs are inscribed on this tower. Thus it is very important architectural source of information about that period which reveals the cultural trend of the period.

Question 2

With reference to the Khilji Dynasty, answer the following question:

(a) What were the steps taken by Alauddin Khilji to regulate prices?

(b) What were the methods adopted by Alauddin Khilji to crush the power of the nobility?

(c) What measures did Alauddin Khilji take to increase the revenue?

Answer

(a) The steps taken by Alauddin Khilji to regulate prices were:

  1. He fixed the cost of all commodities such as foodgrains, sugar and cooking oil.
  2. He set up three different markets at Delhi — one market for food grains, the second for costly cloth and the third for horses, slaves and cattle. Each market was put under the charge of a controller of market or Shahna.
  3. There were strict punishments for cheating and underweighing goods.

(b) Alauddin Khilji had to face a series of rebellions from the nobles. That's why he took steps to crush their power. The methods adopted by Alauddin Khilji to crush the power of the nobility were:

  1. The nobles were not allowed to hold functions or parties or to form marriage alliances without the permission of the Sultan.
  2. The use of wine and intoxicants was banned.
  3. Gambling was forbidden and gamblers were severely punished.
  4. He started paying soldiers in cash instead of land.
  5. He established an efficient spy system to keep a check on the activities of the nobles.

(c) The measures Alauddin Khilji took to increase the revenue were:

  1. He brought all the land of the empire under his direct control.
  2. He introduced the practice of measuring the land and fixed the state share accordingly.
  3. He increased the state revenue from one-third to one-half.
  4. He demanded the revenue in cash and not in kind.
  5. He appointed special officers for revenue collection.

Question 3

With reference to the reign of Muhammad Bin Tughlaq, explain the following:

(a) His attempts to transfer the capital from Delhi to Daulatabad.

(b) Introduction of token currency.

(c) Increased taxation in Doab and its consequences.

Answer

(a) Muhammad Bin Tughlaq shifted his capital from Delhi to Devagiri near Aurangabad and renamed it Daulatabad. He did this for following reasons:

  1. His intention was to control Deccan from there as Daulatabad was centrally located.
  2. Delhi was in grip of severe famine.
  3. Delhi was constantly threatened by the Mongol invasions.

He ordered the people of Delhi including the religious heads to shift to Daulatabad. On realising the gravity of threat from north west, he decided to shift the capital back to Delhi. This caused lots of hardships to the people.

(b) Introduction of token currency was one of the controversial steps taken by Muhammad Bin Tughlaq. There was shortage of silver, so Muhammad Bin Tughlaq introduced bronze Tankas in place of silver Tankas. But this experiment failed due to the circulation of counterfeit or fake coins on a very large scale, which caused a chaos in trade and commerce. Consequently, he withdrew the token currency.

(c) Muhammad Bin Tughlaq wanted to conquer territories not only in India but also in Central Asia. For this he needed more money to maintain a big army, so he increased taxes in fertile regions of Ganga-Yamuna Doab. At the same time, a severe famine broke out in the area and people refused to pay the extra taxes and rose in rebellion. But the tax collectors showed no mercy and took stern measures to collect the taxes. This made some of the peasants to abandon their lands and flee to jungles. Though Muhammad Bin Tughlaq took effective actions to fight the famine but it was too late and many people were starved to death as agriculture suffered a heavy setback in the doab area.

Question 4

With reference to the administrative system of the Delhi Sultanate, give the functions of each of the officials:

(a) Ariz-i-mumalik

(b) Wazir

(c) Diwan-i-risalat

Answer

(a) Ariz-i-mumalik — He was the minister in charge of the army but not the commander-in-chief, since Sultan himself commanded all the armed forces. The responsibility of the ariz's department was to recruit, equip and pay the army.

(b) Wazir — He was the key figure in administration who acted as the Prime Minister. The Wazir supervised the work of the other officials. The final decisions were always taken by the Sultan.

(c) Diwan-i-risalat — He dealt with religious matters and was presided over by the chief Sadar, who was generally a leading qazi.

Question 5

Study the picture and answer the following questions:

Study the picture and answer the following questions. Who began erecting this monument? Who completed it? Where is it located? Name the saint after whom the monument is named. What information do the monuments of the Sultanate period provide about the Sultanate era? Mention any four architectural features of the monument. Medieval India - (B) The Delhi Sultanate, Total History and Civics Solutions ICSE Class 9.

(a) Who began erecting this monument? Who completed it? Where is it located?

(b) Name the saint after whom the monument is named. What information do the monuments of the Sultanate period provide about the Sultanate era?

(c) Mention any four architectural features of the monument.

Answer

(a) Qutub-ud-din Aibak began erecting this monument. It was completed by Iltutmish. It is situated in Delhi.

(b) It is named after Sufi Saint Qutub-ud-din Bakhtiyar Kaki.
The monuments of the Sultanate period reveal the cultural trends, the living conditions, faiths and beliefs of the period. They also reveal the socio-cultural outlook of the rulers.

(c) Four architectural features of the Qutub Minar are:

  1. When originally completed, it rose to a height of 71.4 metres with four storeys. The tower was damaged due to lightning in 1369. Feroz Shah Tughlaq repaired it and rose its height further.
  2. It has five storeys tapering as they ascend. Each storey is separated from the other by projecting balcony.
  3. The base of the Minar has a diameter of 13.8 metres and the top of Minar has a diameter of 3 metres. It has a circular stairway of 379 steps leading to the top.
  4. The projecting balconies are supported in such a way that the whole structure takes the load of the weight.
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