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Test: Writing And City Life- Source Based Type Questions - UPSC MCQ


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Test: Writing And City Life- Source Based Type Questions - Question 1

Read the passage and answer the following question:

A man of the southern marshes, Nabopolassar, released Babylonia from Assyrian domination in 625 BCE. His successors increased their territory and organised building projects at Babylon. From that time, even after the Achaemenids of Iran conquered Babylon in 539 BCE and until 331 BCE when Alexander conquered Babylon, Babylon was the premier city of the World, more than 850 hectares, with a triple wall, Great Palaces and Temples, a Ziggurat or Stepped Tower, and a Processional way to the Ritual Centre. Its Trading houses had widespread dealings and its Mathematicians and Astronomers made some new discoveries. Nabonidus was the Last Ruler of Independent Babylon. He writes that the God of Ur came to him in a dream and ordered him to appoint a Priestess to take charge of the Cult in that Ancient Town in the Deep South. He writes: ‘Because for a very long time the Office of High Priestess had been forgotten, her characteristic features nowhere indicated, I thought to myself day after day …’ Then, he says, he found the stele of a very Early King whom we today date to about 1150 BCE and saw on that Stele the Carved Image

of the Priestess. He observed the clothing and the jewellery that was depicted. This is how he was able to dress his daughter for her consecration as Priestess. On another occasion, Nabonidus’s men brought to him a broken statue inscribed with the name of Sargon, king of Akkad. (We know today that the latter ruled around 2370 BCE.) Nabonidus, and indeed many intellectuals, had heard of this Great King of remote times. Nabonidus felt he had to repair the statue. ‘Because of my reverence for the Gods and respect for Kingship,’ he writes, ‘I summoned Skilled Craftsmen, and replaced the Head.’

Q. Which is correct about Nabonidus?

Detailed Solution for Test: Writing And City Life- Source Based Type Questions - Question 1

Correct answer is A. Both (iii) and (iv) are correct.
The passage states that Nabonidus was the Last Ruler of Independent Babylon, which supports statement 1) that he was the Last Ruler of Babylon. Additionally, the passage mentions that Nabonidus repaired a broken statue inscribed with the name of Sargon, the King of Akkad, which supports statement 3) that he repaired the Statue of Sargon, the King of Akkad.

Test: Writing And City Life- Source Based Type Questions - Question 2

Read the following extract carefully and answer the following question by choosing the correct option:

The connection between city life, trade and writing is brought out in a long Sumerian Epic poem about Enmerkar, one of the earliest rulers of Uruk. In Mesopotamian tradition, Uruk was the city par excellence, known simply as The City.

Enmerkar is associated with the organisation of the first trade of Sumer: in the early days, the Epic says, ‘trade was not known’. Enmerkar wanted lapis lazuli and precious metals for the beautification of a city Temple and sent his messenger out to get them from the chief of a very distant land called Aratta. ‘The Messenger heeded the word of the king. By night he went just by the stars. By day, he would go by Heaven’s Sun divine. He had to go up into the mountain ranges, and had to come down out of the mountain range. The people of Susa (a city) below the mountains saluted him like tiny mice. Five mountain ranges, six mountain ranges, seven mountain ranges he crossed...’

Q. Enmerkar sent his messenger out to get precious metal to a very distant land. What was the name of the land?

Detailed Solution for Test: Writing And City Life- Source Based Type Questions - Question 2

Enmerkar wanted lapis lazuli and precious metals for the beautification of a city temple and sent his messenger out to get them from the chief of a very distant land called Aratta.

Test: Writing And City Life- Source Based Type Questions - Question 3

Read the following extract carefully and answer the following question by choosing the correct option:

The connection between city life, trade and writing is brought out in a long Sumerian Epic poem about Enmerkar, one of the earliest rulers of Uruk. In Mesopotamian tradition, Uruk was the city par excellence, known simply as The City.

Enmerkar is associated with the organisation of the first trade of Sumer: in the early days, the Epic says, ‘trade was not known’. Enmerkar wanted lapis lazuli and precious metals for the beautification of a city Temple and sent his messenger out to get them from the chief of a very distant land called Aratta. ‘The Messenger heeded the word of the king. By night he went just by the stars. By day, he would go by Heaven’s Sun divine. He had to go up into the mountain ranges, and had to come down out of the mountain range. The people of Susa (a city) below the mountains saluted him like tiny mice. Five mountain ranges, six mountain ranges, seven mountain ranges he crossed...’

Q. What connection does the long Sumerian Epic poem about Enmerkar highlight?

Detailed Solution for Test: Writing And City Life- Source Based Type Questions - Question 3
The connection between city life, trade and writing are brought out in a long Sumerian epic poem about Enmerkar, one of the earliest rulers of Uruk.
Test: Writing And City Life- Source Based Type Questions - Question 4

Read the following extract carefully and answer the following question by choosing the correct option:

City life began in Mesopotamia, the land between the Euphrates and the Tigris rivers that is now part of the Republic of Iraq. Mesopotamian Civilization is known for its prosperity, city life, its voluminous and rich literature and its mathematics and astronomy. Mesopotamia writing system and literature spread to the Eastern Mediterranean, Northern Syria and Turkey and after 2000 BCE, so that the kingdoms of that entire region were writing to one another and to the Pharaoh of Egypt, in the language and script of Mesopotamia. In the beginning of recorded history, the land, mainly the urbanized South, was called Sumer and Akkad. After 2000 BCE when Babylon became an important city, the term Babylonia was used for the southern region. From about 1100 BCE when the Assyrians established their Kingdom in the north, the region became known as Assyria. The first known language of the land was Sumerian. It was gradually replaced by Akkadian around 2400 BCE when Akkadian speakers arrived. This language flourished till about Alexander time 336 - 323 BCE with some regional changes occurring. From 1400 BCE Aramaic also trickled in.

Q. What was the first known language of the land?

Detailed Solution for Test: Writing And City Life- Source Based Type Questions - Question 4
The Sumerian language is one of the earliest known written languages. The "proto-literate" period of Sumerian writing spans c. 3300 to 3000 BC. In this period, records are purely logographic, with phonological content. The oldest document of the proto-literate period is the Kish tablet. Falkenstein (1936) lists 939 signs used in the proto-literate period (late Uruk, 34th to 31st centuries).
Test: Writing And City Life- Source Based Type Questions - Question 5

Read the following extract carefully and answer the following question by choosing the correct option:

Today Mesopotamian excavators have much higher standards of accuracy and care in recording than in the old days, so that few dig huge areas the way Ur was excavated. Moreover, few archaeologists have the funds to employ large teams of excavators. Thus, the mode of obtaining data has changed.

Take the small town of Abu Salabikh, about 10 hectares in area in 2500 BCE with a population less than 10000. The outlines of walls were at first traced by scrapping surfaces. This involves scraping off the top few millimetres of the mound

with the sharp and wide end of a shovel or other tool. While the soil underneath was still slightly moist, the archaeologist could make out different colours, textures and lines of bricks, walls or pits or other features. A few houses that were discovered were excavated. The archaeologist also sieved through tons of earth to recover plant and animal remains, and in the process identified many species of plants and animals and found large quantities of charred fish bones that had been swept out onto the streets. Plant seeds and fibre remained after dung cake had been burned as fuel and thus kitchens were identified. Living rooms were those with fewer traces. Because they found the teeth of very young pigs on the streets, archaeologists concluded that pigs must have roamed freely here as in any other Mesopotamia towns. In fact, one house burial contained some pig bones - the dead person must have been given some pork for his nourishment in the Afterlife. The archaeologist also made microscopic studies of room floors to decide which rooms in a house were roofed (with popular logs, Palm leaves, straw etc.) and which were open to the sky.

Q. On the basis of the given information, what do you know about Abu Salabikh?

Detailed Solution for Test: Writing And City Life- Source Based Type Questions - Question 5
Abu Salabikh was a famous Mesopotamian town. It was spread over an area of 10 hectares in 2500 BCE with a population of less than ten thousand.
Test: Writing And City Life- Source Based Type Questions - Question 6

Read the following extract carefully and answer the following question by choosing the correct option:

Today Mesopotamian excavators have much higher standards of accuracy and care in recording than in the old days, so that few dig huge areas the way Ur was excavated. Moreover, few archaeologists have the funds to employ large teams of excavators. Thus, the mode of obtaining data has changed.

Take the small town of Abu Salabikh, about 10 hectares in area in 2500 BCE with a population less than 10000. The outlines of walls were at first traced by scrapping surfaces. This involves scraping off the top few millimetres of the mound

with the sharp and wide end of a shovel or other tool. While the soil underneath was still slightly moist, the archaeologist could make out different colours, textures and lines of bricks, walls or pits or other features. A few houses that were discovered were excavated. The archaeologist also sieved through tons of earth to recover plant and animal remains, and in the process identified many species of plants and animals and found large quantities of charred fish bones that had been swept out onto the streets. Plant seeds and fibre remained after dung cake had been burned as fuel and thus kitchens were identified. Living rooms were those with fewer traces. Because they found the teeth of very young pigs on the streets, archaeologists concluded that pigs must have roamed freely here as in any other Mesopotamia towns. In fact, one house burial contained some pig bones - the dead person must have been given some pork for his nourishment in the Afterlife. The archaeologist also made microscopic studies of room floors to decide which rooms in a house were roofed (with popular logs, Palm leaves, straw etc.) and which were open to the sky.

Q. What do you think, according to the extract, the presence of pig bones along with burial indicates?

Detailed Solution for Test: Writing And City Life- Source Based Type Questions - Question 6
The presence of pig bones along with burial indicates that the dead person must have been given some pork for his nourishment.
Test: Writing And City Life- Source Based Type Questions - Question 7

Read the following extract carefully and answer the following question by choosing the correct option:

However rich the food resources of Mesopotamia, its mineral resources were few. Most parts of the South lacked stones for tools, seals and jewels; the wood of the Iraqi Date Palm and poplar was not good enough for carts, cart wheels or boats; and there was no metal for tools, vessels or ornaments. So, we can summarise that the ancient Mesopotamian could have traded their abundant textiles and agricultural produce for wood, copper, tin, silver, gold, shell and various stones from Turkey and Iran, or across the Gulf. These latter regions had mineral resources, but much less scope for agriculture. Regular exchange - possible only when there was a social organisation - to equip foreign expeditions and direct the exchange were initiated by the people of Southern Mesopotamia.

Q. Name the countries with which the Mesopotamia trade flourished.

Test: Writing And City Life- Source Based Type Questions - Question 8

Study this picture of Clay Tablet used by Mesopotamians carefully and answer the following question by choosing the correct option:

The letters and signs depicted in the above pictures are known as cuneiform and the language used was Sumerians;

Test: Writing And City Life- Source Based Type Questions - Question 9

Read the following extract carefully and answer the following question by choosing the correct option:

Mesopotamians valued city life in which people of many communities and cultures live side by side. After cities were destroyed in war, they recorded them in poetry.

The most ignorant reminder to us of the pride Mesopotamians took in their City came at the end of Gilgamesh Epic, which was written on twelve tablets. Gilgamesh is said to have ruled the city of Uruk sometime after Enmerkar. A great hero who subdued people far and wide, he got a shock when his heroic friend died. He then set out to find the secret of immorality, crossing the water that surrounds the world. After a heroic attempt Gilgamesh failed and returned to Uruk. There he consoled himself by walking along the city wall, back and forth. He admired the foundation made of fired bricks that he had put into place. It is on the city wall of Uruk that the long tail of heroism and endeavour fizzles out. Gilgamesh does not say that even though he would die his sons would outlive him, as a tribal hero would have done. He takes consolidation in the city that his people had built.

Choose the correct option:

Assertion (A): He set out to find the secret of immortality.

Reason (R): He takes consolation in the city that his people had built.

Detailed Solution for Test: Writing And City Life- Source Based Type Questions - Question 9
Mesopotamians valued city life in which people of many communities and cultures lived side by side

1. The most poignant reminder to us of the pride Mesopotamians took in their cities comes at the end of the Gilgamesh Epic, which was written on twelve tablets. Gilgamesh is said to have ruled the city or Uruk some time after Enmerkar.

2. A great hero who subdued people far and wide, he got a shock when his heroic friend died. He then set out to find the secret of immortality, crossing the waters that surround the world.

3. After a heroic attempt, Gilgamesh failed, and returned to Uruk. There, he consoled himself by walking along the city wall, back and forth. He admired the foundations made of fired bricks that he had put into place.

4. It is on the city wall of Uruk that the long tale of heroism and endeavour fizzles out. Gilgamesh does not say that even though he will die his sons will outlive him, as a tribal hero would have done. He takes consolation in the city that his people had built.

Test: Writing And City Life- Source Based Type Questions - Question 10

Read the following extract carefully and answer the following question by choosing the correct option:

Mesopotamians valued city life in which people of many communities and cultures live side by side. After cities were destroyed in war, they recorded them in poetry.

The most ignorant reminder to us of the pride Mesopotamians took in their City came at the end of Gilgamesh Epic, which was written on twelve tablets. Gilgamesh is said to have ruled the city of Uruk sometime after Enmerkar. A great hero who subdued people far and wide, he got a shock when his heroic friend died. He then set out to find the secret of immorality, crossing the water that surrounds the world. After a heroic attempt Gilgamesh failed and returned to Uruk. There he consoled himself by walking along the city wall, back and forth. He admired the foundation made of fired bricks that he had put into place. It is on the city wall of Uruk that the long tail of heroism and endeavour fizzles out. Gilgamesh does not say that even though he would die his sons would outlive him, as a tribal hero would have done. He takes consolidation in the city that his people had built.

Q. Who wrote the Epic of Gilgamesh?

Detailed Solution for Test: Writing And City Life- Source Based Type Questions - Question 10
The ancient authors of the stories that compose the poem are anonymous. The latest and most complete version yet found, composed no later than around 600 b.c., was signed by a Babylonian author and editor who called himself Sin-Leqi-Unninni.
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