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Friday, 13 May 2022

HISTORY (VII)-LESSON-7 TRIBES, NOMADS AND SETTLED COMMUNITIES (LESSON NOTES)

 

HISTORY (VII)-LESSON-7

TRIBES, NOMADS AND SETTLED COMMUNITIES

(LESSON NOTES)

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v INTRODUCTION: -

  Ø During the Medieval Age, several social, economic and political development took place.

  Ø But social change was not the same everywhere, because different kinds of societies evolved differently.

  Ø As we known that the Indian society was divided on the basis varnas.  

v TRIBAL SOCIETIES

  Ø The communities which did not follow rules and rituals laid down by the Brahmins and nor divided into unequal classes. They were known as tribes.

  Ø Most of the tribes were dependant on agriculture. Others were herders or hunter-gatherers or nomadic.


  Ø Many tribes lived in forests, hills, deserts and other places which were difficult to reach. They preserved their culture and heritage through oral tradition.

  Ø There were even clashes between tribes and powerful caste-based societies.

v SOURCES TO KNOW

  Ø Contemporary historians and travellers from medieval India hardly give any information about the tribes.

  Ø They did not keep written records.

  Ø But they preserved rich customs and oral traditions which were passed from generation to generation.

v SOME POWERFUL TRIBES

  Ø Many of the tribes emerged as politically powerful groups through their areas of influence and activities varied.

  Ø Some of the powerful tribes were: -

§  Khokhar tribe in Punjab

§  Langahs and Arghuns in Multan

§  Gaddis in the Himalayas

§  Kolis and Berads of Gujarat

§  Gonds of Chhattisgarh

§  Mundas and Santhals in Jharkhand

§  Bhil tribe in Central India,

§  Naga, Ahoms in North east etc.

  Ø The tribal societies underwent a change as a result of interaction with the Hindu and Islamic societies.

v PASTORAL NOMADS

  Ø The pastoral nomads moved from one place to another with their herd of animals.

  Ø They survived on milk products and exchanged ghee, wool, etc. with farmers for grains, cloth, utensils, etc.

  Ø The most important trader nomads were Banjaras. Their caravan was called ‘tanda’. Sultan Alauddin Khilji used Banjaras to move grain to the city markets. They also transported food grain for the Mughal army during military campaigns.

  Ø Pastoral tribes thus basically reared and sold animals like horses and cattle to the prosperous people.

v CHANGES IN CASTE STRUCTURE OF INDIA

  Ø With the growth of the economy, new jatis emerged from varnas.

  Ø Many tribes became part of rule changes. Smaller castes or jatis emerged with the growth of society. Smiths, carpenters and masons were recognised as separate jatis.

  Ø Among the Kshatriyas, new Rajput clans became powerful by the 11th and 12th centuries. They belonged to different lineages such as Hunas, Chandelas, Chalukyas, etc.

  Ø Some of these had been tribes earlier. Many of these clans came to be regarded as Rajputs.

Ø    The rise of Rajput clans to the position of rulers set an example for the tribal people to follow.

v CLOSER LOOK- THE GONDS

  Ø The Gonds lived in a vast forested region known as Gondwana. They practised shifting cultivation.

  Ø The Gonds rose when Delhi Sultanate declined. The Gond kingdom Gondwana in south-eastern Madhya Pradesh was founded in the 15th century.

  Ø GOND KINGDOM-GARH KATANGA

§  The Akbar Nama mentions the Gond kingdom of Garha Katanga. Garha Katanga was a rich state.

§  Garhkatanga became so powerful that brahmanas also received land grants from the Gond rajas and became more influential.

§  The Gond chiefs now wished to be recognised as Rajputs. So, Aman Das, the Gond raja of Garha Katanga, assumed the title of Sangram Shah.


§  His son, Dalpat, married princess Durgawati, the daughter of Salbahan, the Chandel Rajput raja of Mahoba.

§  Rani Durgawati was very capable, and started ruling on behalf of her five-year-old son, Bir Narain.

§  In 1565, the Mughal forces under Asaf Khan attacked Garha Katanga. A strong resistance was put up by Rani Durgawati.

§  However, it was defeated by the Mughals. Despite that, the Gond kingdoms survived for some time.

  Ø ADMINISTRATION OF GONDS: -

§  The administrative system of these kingdoms was centralised.

§  The large Gond kingdom was divided into garh which was controlled by a particular Gond clan. Each clan had its own raja or rai.

§  This was further divided into units of 84 villages called chaurasi.

§  The chaurasi was subdivided into barhots which were made up of 12 villages each.

v CLOSER LOOK- THE AHOMS

  Ø The Ahoms migrated to the Brahmaputra valley from present-day Myanmar in the 13th century. They created a new state by suppressing the older political system of the bhuiyans (landlords).


  Ø During the 16th century, they annexed the kingdoms of the Chhutiyas and of Koch-Hajo and subjugated many other tribes. Thus, they built a large state.

  Ø However, they faced many invasions from the south-west and finally, they were defeated by the Mughals.

  Ø ADMINSTRATION OF AHOMS

§  The Ahom state depended upon forced labours which were known as paiks.

§  The administration of Ahoms were quite centralised.

§  The Ahoms belonged to a warrior class and built roads and irrigation system even before establishing their rule.

  Ø AHOMS SOCIETY

§  Ahoms tribal societies were absolutely different from those which existed in big cities.

§  Ahom society was divided into clans or Khels. The society was very sophisticated.

§  The Ahoms worshipped their own tribal gods. However, in the reign of Sib Singh Hinduism became the predominant religion.

§  But the Ahom kings did not completely give up their traditional beliefs.

§  Poets and scholars were given award. Historical works, known as buranjis, were also written – first in the Ahom language and then in Assamese.

 

v IMPORTANT TERMS

  Ø Clan: A clan is a group of families or households claiming descent from a common ancestor. The tribal organisation is often based on kinship or clan loyalties.

  Ø Nomads: People who keep on moving from one place to another.

  Ø Nomadic pastoralists: People who move over long distances with their animals.

  Ø Tanda: The caravan of the Banjaras was called tanda.

  Ø Itinerant Group: This group consists of craftspersons, peddlers and entertainers who travel from place to place practising their different occupations.

  Shifting Cultivation: Trees and bushes in a forest area are first cut and burnt. The crop is then sown in the ashes. After some time when this land loses its fertility, another patch of land is cleared and planted in the same manner

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