Q. Consider the following dynasties :

  1. Hoysala
  2. Gahadavala
  3. Kakatiya
  4. Yadava

How many of the above dynasties established their kingdoms in early eighth century AD?

(a) Only one
(b) Only two
(c) Only three
(d) None

Answer: (d) None

  • The Hoysalas came into the limelight from the beginning of the 11th century. In the Kaliyur (near Talakad) inscription of about 990 A.D., a Hoysala chief is mentioned in the Ganga confederacy fighting against Aprameya, a Chola general, and this chief is identified as Nripakama, the earliest known member of the Hoysala dynasty. His son and successor Vinayaditya is first referred to in a record of 1047 A.D.
  • With the break-up of the Pratihara empire, a number of Rajput states came into existence in north India. 
  • The most important of these were the Gahadavalas of Kanauj, the Paramaras of Malwa, and the Chauhans of Ajmer. There were other smaller dynasties in different parts of the country, such as the Kalachuris in the area around modern Jabalpur, the Chandellas in Bundelkhand, the Chalukyas of Gujarat, the Tomars of Delhi, etc Bengal remained under the control of the Palas and, later, under the Senas. The Gahadavalas of Kanauj gradually squeezed the Palas out of Bihar.
  • Chandradeva (1089–1103 CE), also known as Chandraditya, was an Indian king from the Gahadavala dynasty. He ruled the Antarvedi country in present-day Uttar Pradesh, including Kanyakubja and Varanasi.
  • At its height, the Gahadval kingdom extended from Mongyr in Bihar to Delhi. The greatest ruler in the dynasty was Govind Chandra who ruled in the first half of the twelfth century. He made Kanauj his capital, with Banaras remaining a second capital. Persian sources of the time call Govind Chandra the greatest ruler of Hindustan.
  • The Gahadvars are reputed to be the biggest defenders against the continued Ghaznavid raids into the doab. Govind Chandra was succeeded by Jai Chandra who had to contend with the rising power of the Chauhans.
  • The sub-feudatories of the Rashtrakutas emerged themselves as independent kings and founded the Kakatiya dynasty around 950 AD and this kingdom became a strong and united whole of Telugu-speaking lands and lasted for more than three centuries and a half.
  • The kingdom saw powerful kings like Ganapatideva, Rudradeva and Prataparudra as well as the first-ever woman ruler in the subcontinent, Rudramadevi.
  • The Kakatiyas ruled from Hanumakonda in the beginning and shifted their capital to Warangal later.
  • In the last quarter of the 12th century AD the Yadavas of Devagiri came into prominence.
  • They had previously been ruling over Seunadesha (Khandesh) as feudatories of the Chalukyas of Kalyani. The founder of the family was Dridhaprahara, the son of Subahu.

Q. Who among the following rulers of Vijayanagara Empire constructed a large dam across Tungabhadra River and a canal-cum-aqueduct several kilometres long from the river to the capital city?

(a) Devaraya I
(b) Mallikarjuna
(c) Vira Vijaya
(d) Virupaksha

Answer: (a) Devaraya I

  • Deva Raya I constructed a dam across the Tungabhadra so that he could bring the canals into the city to relieve the shortage of water.
  • It irrigated the neighbouring fields also, for we are told that the canals increased his revenues by 350,000 pardaos.
  • He also built a dam on the river Haridra for irrigation purposes.
Deva Raya I
  • Deva Raya I was the ruler of the Vijayanagara Empire from 1406 to 1422.
  • Deva Raya I was a skilled leader known for his military abilities and support for irrigation projects in his kingdom.
  • He made the Vijayanagara army more modern by improving the cavalry, hiring skilled archers from Turkey, and strengthening his archers and horses from Arabia and Persia. 
  • An Italian traveler named Nicolo Conti, who visited Vijayanagara around 1420, greatly admired Deva Raya I.
  • Deva Raya I also promoted Kannada literature and architecture.
  • He had a famous Jain poet named Madhura in his court, who had also served his father, King Harihara II.
  • He wrote a book in Kannada about the life of the fifteenth Jain Tirthankar, Dharmanatha, and a poem praising Gommateshvara of Shravanabelagola.
  • During his rule, the well-known Hazare Rama temple was constructed, showcasing excellent Deccan architecture.
  • Bhima Devi, one of Deva Raya’s queens, was a student of Jain guru Abhinava Charukirti Panditacharya. She was devoted to Shantinatha, the 16th Jain tirthankara, and built a temple in Mangayi Basti in Shravanabelagola.

Q. Who among the following rulers of medieval Gujarat surrendered Diu to Portuguese?

(a) Ahmad Shah
(b) Mahmud Begarha
(c) Bahadur Shah
(d) Muhammad Shah

Answer: (c) Bahadur Shah

  • In view of the growing Portuguese threat to the Gujarat trade and coastal areas, the sultan of Gujarat sent an embassy to the Ottoman ruler, congratulating him on his victories, and seeking his support.
  • In return, the Ottoman ruler expressed a desire to combat the infidels, that is, the Portuguese, who had disturbed the shores of Arabia. From this time on, there was a continuous exchange of embassies and letters between the two countries.
Surrender of Diu to the Portuguese
  • The Turks ousted the Portuguese from the Red Sea, and in 1529, a strong fleet under Sulaiman Rais was dispatched to aid Bahadur Shah, the ruler of Gujarat. Bahadur Shah received it well, and two of the Turkish officials, who were given Indian names, were appointed governors of Surat and Diu, respectively. Of these two, Rumi Khan was later to earn a great name for himself as a master-gunner.
  • In 1531, after intriguing with local officials, the Portuguese attacked Daman and Diu but the Ottoman commander, Rumi Khan, repulsed the attack. However, the Portuguese built a fort at Chaul lower down the coast.
  • Before the Gujarat–Turkish alliance could be consolidated, a bigger threat to Gujarat appeared from the side of the Mughals. Humayun attacked Gujarat. In order to meet this threat, Bahadur Shah granted the island of Bassein to the Portuguese. A defensive-offensive alliance against the Mughals was also concluded, and the Portuguese were allowed to build a fort at Diu. Thus were the Portuguese able to establish their foothold in Gujarat.
  • Bahadur Shah soon repentedhis concessions to the Portuguese. Following the expulsion of the Mughals from Gujarat, he once again appealed to the Ottoman sultan for help, and tried to limit the Portuguese encroachments at Diu. During the negotiations, Bahadur Shah who was aboard one of the ships the governor of the fort suspected treachery. In the scuffle which ensued, the Portuguese governor was killed and Bahadur Shah drowned while swimming ashore. This was in 1536.