May 22, 2020 – Daily Quiz

1. With reference to Dhrupad, one of the major traditions of India that has been kept alive for centuries, which of the following statements are correct?.

  1. Dhrupad originated and developed in the Rajput kingdoms during the Mughal period.
  2. Dhrupad is primarily a devotional and spiritual music.
  3. Dhrupad Alap uses Sanskrit syllables from Mantras.

Select the correct answer using the codes given below :

(a) 1 and 2 only

(b) 2 and 3 only

(c) 1, 2 and 3

(d) None of the above is correct


 2. In the context of cultural history of India, a pose in dance and dramatics called ‘Tribhanga’ has been a favourite of Indian artists from ancient times till today. Which one of the following statements best describes this pose?

(a) One leg is bent and the body is slightly but oppositely curved at waist and neck

(b) Facial expressions, hand gestures and make-up are combined to symbolize certain epic or historic characters

(c) Movements of body, face and hands are used to express oneself or to tell a story

(d) A little smile, slightly curved waist and certain hand gestures are emphasized to express the feelings of love or eroticism


3. With reference to the history of Indian rock-cut architecture, consider the following statements:

  1. The caves at Badami are the oldest surviving rock-cut caves in India.
  2. The Barabar rock-cut caves were originally made for Ajivikas by Emperor Chandragupta Maurya.
  3. At Ellora, caves were made for different faiths.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 and 3 only

(c) 3 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3


4. Consider the following historical places: 

  1. Ajanta Caves
  2. Lepakshi Temple
  3. Sanchi Stupa

Which of the above places is / are also known for mural paintings?

(a) 1 only

(b) 1 and 2 only

(c) 1, 2 and 3

(d) None



Famous shrine Location
1.  Tabo monastery and temple complex Spiti Valley
2.  Lhotsava Lhakhang temple, Nako Zanskar Valley
3.  Alchi temple complex Ladakh

Which of the pairs given above is/are correctly matched?

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 and 3 only

(c) 1 and 3 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3


Answers & Explanations

  1. (b)

  1. (a)

  1. (c)

Rock-cut architecture is the practice of creating a structure, by carving out of the solid natural rock. It differs from ‘structural architecture’ in many different ways. Firstly, the art form is more of sculptural than architectural in the sense, a solid body of material (rock) is taken, the final product visualized and cutting/carving starts. The rock that is not part of the structure, (as in Kailashanath Temple, Ellora) is removed until the only rock left is the architectural elements of the excavated exterior. Secondly, the mason is not overtly concerned with spans, forces, beams, columns, and all other architectural features – these can be carved, but are seldom playing any structural role. Indian rock cut architecture is found across length and breadth and exampling Indian culture through ages –  

The significance of Rock Cut architecture:

Religious: They depict religious values  Buddhist: Chaitra and Viharas Bhaja and Karle caves at western Ghats, Ajanta caves

Hindu: Kailasanath  temple at Ellora,Shore temples. Mahabalipuram

Jainism:Udaygiri and Khandavgiri caves , Ellora caves

Ajivika Sect : Barabara caves

Art and cultural significance: A period of intense building activities at Ajanta  site occurred under the Vakataka King Harisena between 460-478 CE (Caves other than 9, 10, 12 and 13). A profuse variety of decorative sculpture, intricately carved columns, and carved reliefs are found, including exquisitely carved cornices and pilaster. Skilled artisans constructed living rock, imitating timber texture, grain, and structure.

A rock-cut temple is carved from a large rock, and excavated and cut to imitate a wooden or masonry temple, with wall decorations, and works of art. The finest example of this type is the Kailashanāth Temple at Ellora. The Kailashanāth Temple, or Cave 16 as it is known at Ellora Caves, is located at Maharashtra on the Deccan Plateau, is a huge monolithic temple dedicated to Lord Siva. It is famous for the fact that, it was excavated from the top down, rather than by the usual practice of carving into the scarp of a hillside. The Temple was created through a single, huge top-down excavation 100 feet down into volcanic basaltic cliff rock.

Society: The earliest caves employed by humans were natural caves used by local inhabitant for a variety of purposes, such as shrines and shelters. The early caves included overhanging rock decorated with rock-cut art, and the use of natural caves during the Mesolithic period (6,000 BCE). The rock-shelters of Bhimbetka, World Heritage Site, are on the Deccan Plateau, where deep erosion has left huge sandstone outcrops. The many caves found there contain primitive tools and decorative rock paintings that reflect the ancient tradition of human interaction with their environment, an interaction that continues to this day.

Mandapeshwar, it is a small cave because of the rock structure and its entrance shows equality of gender in the form of sculptures of donor couples.

Economic:.Bhaja and Karle were at famous trade routes in western Ghats which used to connect sea port to interiors.

Political: Caves were patronized by kings across country Barbara caves by Ashoka, Ellora caves by Rashtrakutas ,Badami by Chalukyas.

Education center: Kanheri caves were biggest education center in Western India. Environment Conservation: Water resources are prevalent at Kanheri which shows water harvesting was practiced at caves.

  1. (b)

Indian Mural Paintings are paintings made on walls of caves and palaces. These pieces of art are symbolic of the life, culture and traditions of the people of the contemporaneous periods. The caves of Ajanta, Ellora and Elephanta also on the Bagh Caves and Sittanvasal  are vivid reminders of great art that flourished centuries ago.

Paintings Themes
Ajanta paintings The themes of most of these paintings revolve around the life and teachings of Lord Buddha. This includes the Jataka stories related to the various lives and incarnations of Buddha. 
Ellora Paintings The rock paintings of Ellora were painted in two different series. The first series, which were done when the caves were carved, revolve around Lord Vishnu and Goddess Lakshmi. The second series, painted centuries later, illustrate procession of Shaiva holy men, Apsaras, etc. 

It also included Jataka tales and Jain text.

Bagh Paintings  Paintings are both secular and religious  ( Buddhism is main inspiration ). Painting style is influenced by Ajanta.


Sittanavasal Paintings The themes of these paintings include animals, fish, ducks, people collecting lotuses from a pond, two dancing figures, etc. Apart from that, one can also find inscriptions dating back to the 9th and 10th century. Jainism is main inspiration.
Badami Paintings A cave site in Karnataka, patronized by chalukya king, Manglesha Depictions in the caves show Vaishnava affiliation, Therefore, the cave is popularly known as Vishnu cave.
Pandyas paintings Jains texts, female figures, etc.Paintings at Tirumalaipuram caves & Jaina caves at Sittanvasal were patronised by Pandyas
Pallavas paintings Beautiful lotus pond and flowers, dancing figures, lilies, fish, geese, buffaloes and elephants.Paintings at the Kanchipuram temple were patronised by Pallava king, Rajsimha
Chola paintings The paintings celebrate Lord Åšiva. Paintings at Nartamalai & Brihadeswara temple were patronized by Cholas
Vijayanagara Paintings Paintings at Virupaksha temple (Hamphi) & Lepakshi temple (Andhra Pradesh) were patronised by Vijayanagara Kings
Nayaka Paintings Depicting the story of Mucukunda, a legendary Chola king.
  1. (c)
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