Towns, Traders and Craftspersons


Describe Swat as a gateway to the West .


Surat in Gujarat was the emporium of western trade during the Mughal period along with Cambay (now Khambat) and somewhat later, Ahmedabad. Surat was the gateway for trade with West Asia via the Gulf or Ormuz. Surat has also been called the gate to Mecca because many pilgrim ships set sail from here.
Surat was a cosmopolitan city inhabited by people of all castes and creeds. In the 17th century the Portuguese, Dutch and English had their factories and warehouses at Surat. Several retail and wholesale shops could be found in Surat. These shops sold cotton textiles. Here, it is worth mentioning that the textiles of Surat were famous for their gold lace borders, le. zari and had a market in West Asia, African and Europe. The state provided all the facilities to the people who came to the city from all over the world. The Kathiawad seths or mahqjaxvs had huge banking houses at Surat. The Surat hundis were honoured in far-off markets of Cairo in Egypt, Basra in Iraq and Antwerp in Belgium.


Towns, Traders and Craftspersons

Q 1.

Find out about the present-day taxes on markets. Who collects these taxes? How are they collected and are they used for?

Q 2.

What is bell metal?

Q 3.

Name a few Indian spices which became an important part of European cooking. Ans. Pepper, cinnamon, nutmeg, dried ginger, g. 9. What were craftspersons of Bidar famous for?

Q 4.

What purpose did small towns serve? [V. Imp.]


Describe various Junctions of small towns.

Q 5.

What do the ruins of Hampi reveal?

Q 6.

Name the residence meant for the white rulers in Madras.

Q 7.

Fill in the blanks:
(a) The Rajarajeshvara temple was built in ………………..
(b)  Ajmer is associated with the Sufi saint…………………
(c) Hampi was the capital of the ………….
(d) The Dutch established a settlement at…………….. in Andhra Pradesh.

Q 8.

How did pilgrims contribute to the temples?

Q 9.

Compare any one of the cities described in this chapter with a town or a village with which you are familiar. Do you notice any similarities or differences?

Q 10.

What was the system of advances?

Q 11.

What do temple towns represent? [Imp.]

Q 12.

What did the Indian traders bring from Africa?

Q 13.

Why did the rulers endow temples with grants of land and money?

Q 14.

In what ways was craft production in cities like Calcutta different from that in cities Wee Thanjavur?

Q 15.

Name the residence meant for the white rulers in Calcutta

Q 16.

What is lost wax' technique? [V. Imp.]

Q 17.

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.

Q 18.

How was water supplied, to the city of Thanjavur?

Q 19.

What was special with the Surat hundis?

Q 20.

Why did the Dutch and English East India Companies attempt to control Masulipatnam?

Q 21.

Why has Surat been called the gate to Mecca?[V. Imp.]

Q 22.

Why did people from distant lands visit Surat?

Q 23.

What were the textiles of Surat famous for?

Q 24.

How did the European Companies gain control of the sea trade?

Q 25.

How did temple authorities use their wealth?

Q 26.

How did the system of advances snatch the freedom of the weavers?
How did the Indian Crafts persons lose their independence?

Q 27.

Mention some articles of trade on which temple authorities collected taxes.

Q 28.

What is bronze?

Q 29.

Describe Swat as a gateway to the West .

Q 30.

Who lived in the Black Towns' in cities such as Madras?

Q 31.

Describe the trade activities of the big and small traders belonging to the medieval time.


Q 32.

What made the city of Masulipatnam populous and prosperous?

Q 33.

What were the reasons of the decline of Swat? [V. Imp.]

Q 34.

How important were craftspersons for the building and maintenance of temples?

Q 35.

Why do you think towns grew around temples?

Q 36.

How was Hampi in its heyday in the 15-16th centuries? When did it fall into ruin?

Q 37.

Give an account of the architecture of Hampt