The Medieval India: The Cholas

•    Sources on Cholas include inscriptions on walls, temple pillars and copper plates, written in either Tamil or Sanskrit.
•    Temples, built by Chola rulers, comprised Vimana (towering storey), Mandapam (pillared hall) and Gopuram (gateway). Most famous Chola Temple is Brihadeswara Temple, also known as Rajarajeshwara Temple, as it was built by Rajaraja Chola.
•    Under Rajaraja I (985), Chola Empire extended to include South India, Northern Ceylon and Maldive Islands. He also conquered Kalinga, Ganga kingdom, and Chalukya territory till Tungabhadra River.
•    Rajendra I (1012-1044 A.D.) also followed expansionist policy. He completed conquest of Ceylon, and asserted supremacy over Pandyas and Cheras, but his battles against Western Chalukyas was indecisive.
•    After defeating Bengal, Rajendra established Gangaikonda Cholapuram to commemorate the victory. He also conquered several islands, including Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
•    He dispatched his navy against Indonesia, to conquer Sumatra and Malay. In retaliation for attacks on his kingdom by Chalukyas, he sacked their capital – Kalyani. He also sent a friendly mission to Song Kingdom in China.
•    Rajadhiraja Chola (1044-54) defeated Pandya-Chera-Ceylon alliance and Chalukyas. Rajendra Chola II (1054-1063) continued fighting against Chalukyas.
•    Chola army comprised elephants, cavalry, infantry and strong fleet of navy. They were commanded by officers called nayak or senapati. Chola navy destroyed fleets of adversaries, and conquered several islands in South and Southeast Asia.
•    Chola irrigation system was centered on dams, artificial tanks, reservoirs and wells. Chola revenue was derived mainly from land, in cash or kind, after land measurement. Chola Trade System was centered on maritime trade.
•    Under Chola administration, kingdom was divided into provinces (mandalams), which were further divided into sub units: valanadus (districts) and nadu (villages).
•    Development of Local Self Government was key feature of Chola administration. Chola Village Assemblies comrpised Agrahara or Brahmadeva – houses of Brahmins or religious institutions, surrounding temples. Mahasabhas asserted control through village committees.

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  • Q1

    Rulers of Ganga valley were defeated by the Chola king

    Marks:1
    Answer:

    Rajendra- I.

    Explanation:
    Rajendra I defeated the kings of the Ganga valley and extended his empire upto Kalinga. His rule was extended upto Srilanka and also defeated the Sri Vijaya Empire.
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  • Q2

    In Chola Empire, the settlement of peasants was known as:

    Marks:1
    Answer:

    Ur

    Explanation:

    The special feature of the Chola administration was the local self-government or autonomous administration. The villagers themselves carried out village administration. It was more or less like the modern Panchayati Raj.

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  • Q3

    The ruler whom Rajendra I Chola could not defeat was:

    Marks:1
    Answer:

    Jayasimha II

    Explanation:

    Rajendra I Chola often fought against the Western Chalukyan king, Jayasimha II, with neither side being victorious in the end.

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  • Q4

    Gangaikonda – Cholapuram was built in the period of the

    Marks:1
    Answer:

    Chola dynasty.

    Explanation:
    In order to commemorate the victory over northern kingdoms, the Chola king Rajendra I, founded this new city. This city is famous for its various architectural and sculptural works.
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  • Q5

    Lands granted to non-Brahmins were known as:

    Marks:1
    Answer:

    Vellangavi

    Explanation:

    The Cholas granted many kinds of lands to different classes. Of these, non-Brahmins were gifted lands called Vellangavi.

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