Sample Materials for CSAT Paper -1 (G.S.) Pre 2013: "Ancient Indian History: Gupta & Post-Gupta Period: Society, Economy & Polity"

Sample Materials From Our Study Notes for CSAT Paper -1 (G.S.) Pre 2013

Subject: Ancient Indian History
Topic: Gupta & Post-Gupta Period: Society, Economy & Polity

Contents of The Topic:

  • Taxes in Gupta Period

  • Various Commentary & Bhasya

  • Various References

  • Facts about ancient literature

  • Sixteen Mahajanpadas (600 BC)

  • Arithmetic

  • Algebra

  • Astronomy

  • Medical Science

  • Names of Gods & Goddesses

  • Facts About Inscription

  • Boghag Koi Inscription

  • Hathigumpha Inscription

  • Besnagar Inscription

  • Uttarmerur Inscription

  • Indian History – Boks and Authors

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Annada Grain-giver, refer to Sudras
Apad Dharma Literally means “Duly when in stress” implies what a man may legitimately do when he cannot earn a living by the normal deeds performed by his class.
Brahmadeys Land grant/ a single plot of land or whole of village to an in individual Brahmin or a group of Brahmins.
Devdana Land grants to religious establishment (temple etc.)
Dvija Literally means “twiceborn”. Referred to the three upper classes vig. Brahmans, Kshatriyas and Vaisyas who were supposed to be born twice, once at their natural birth and again at their initiation, when they were invested with the sacred thread and received into the Aryan society.
Ghatikas south Indian education Institutions
Ghatiyantra Irrigation device (Ref. fromBanabhatta)


Hinasippas Low profession Hypergamous system of marriage based on the concept of noble-born stated by Ballala sena.
Kutumbin Important member of village, having landed property.
Manigraman An important guild in Kerela
Nagaraka Urban people of refined culture during the Gupta Age.
Nanadeshi Guild of teachers having membership from different regions and castes
Niyoga (Livirate) The practice of allowing a widow to cohabit with her husband’s younger brother till the birth of a male child prohibited by Dharmashastra from Gupta period onwards.
Shrotriyas Learned Brahmins who had the knowledge of Vedas.
Stridhana Property in the form of jewelers etc. Over which the right of the women was recognised . After the omen’s death it passed over to her daughter.
Varnasrama A general norm of conduct appropriate to each class and to each sage in dharma the life of the individual
Vidusaka The court jester in the Sanskrit drama, a figure of fun, invariably a Brahman

Taxes in Gupta Period

  1. Sulka - Customs & tolls
  2. Sadbhaga - Land revenue (Ref. Kautilya)
  3. Bhaga - Royal share of produce 1/6 of the total, first reference in Arthashastra
  4. Bhoga - Periodica l supplies of fruit, flowers, firewood etc. to the king(in the nature of kings rights & privileges)
  5. Bali a) A type of land revenue                 b) A tpetty cess besides kings normal share-Arthasastra
                                                                  c) Additional & oppressive tax- Ref. Jaakas
                                                                  d) Emergency tax from which chief Ministe4s were exempted –ref. Millind Panho
  6. Bhaga Bhoga- Landrevenue and supplies of first flower etc. to the king Bhogabhaga.
7. Kara A tax in addition to grain share.

Oppressive in nature.

Finds mention in law books, arthsastra and Gupta epigraphs.


Gift of commodities (dravyadanam) –Ref. Medatithi

Fixed gold payment (bhuminiyatam deyam hiranyam) Ref. Sarvajnarayanag) Contribution in the forms of grass/wood etc. (Gulmadayadikam)- Ref. Ramchandra

Charges upon all movable and immovable articles-Ref. Arthasastra

Annual tax paid during Bhadrapada & Vasanta- Bhattaswamin

Contribution from villagers and townsmen either monthly or in the month of Bhadrapada& Pausa (Grama Puravasi Bhyah Pratinasam-Kulluka)

8. Hiranya Tax in cash upon some special types of crops, sometimes cash crops.

1/10 of the total-Ref. Manu & Vishnu

1/50 of the total-Ref. Patanjali

Makes a King wealthy-Ref. Patanjali

Regular in post-mauryan times

Mantioned in Gupta in epigraphs

Payment in gold/ tax on the capita generated annually- Ref. Law books

9. Uparika Came into vogue during the Guptas.

A tax on temporary tenants

10. Udrana First mentioned in Gupta epigraphs.

A tax on permanent tenants

Sometimes a ax for maintenance of police.

Sometimes a tax on fish and other water products.

Test Your Knowledge

1. Consider the following statements and mark the option which is true.
  1. Devdana is a single plot of land of village to an individual Brahmin or group of Brahmins.
  2. Apad Dharma implies what a man may legitimately do when he cannot earn a living by the normal deeds performed by his class.
  3. Niyoga was the practice of allowing a widow to cohabit with her husbands younger brother till the birth of a male child.

Which of the above are incorrect ?

  1. ii only
  2. i & iii only
  3. all of the above
  4. ii & iii only
2. Match the following:

(i) Ghatiyantra A. An imporant guild in Kerala.
(ii) Manigraman B. Irrigation Device
(iii) Shrotriyas C. Learned Brahmins who had the know-ledge of Vedas.

(a) (i)-A (ii)-B (iii)-C
(b) (ii)-A (i)-B (iii)-C
(c) (iii)-A (ii)-B (i)-C

Answer of Question 1: C

Answer of Question 2: B