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Rainbow English Book Class 11 Solutions Chapter 2 Nalanda : Ancient Seat of Learning

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Bihar Board Class 11 English Nalanda : Ancient Seat of Learning Textual Questions and Answers

A. Work in small groups and discuss these questions Orally :

Nalanda Ancient Seat Of Learning Question Answer Bihar Board Question 1.
Who was Dr. Rajendra Prasad ?
He was the first President of the Republic of India.

Nalanda Ancient Seat Of Learning Bihar Board Question 2.
When and where was he born ?
He was born in 1884 in Zeradei, Bihar.

Ancient Seat Of Learning Bihar Board Question 3.
What is his contribution to the nation ?
He had a moderating influence on political thinking. It was through his efforts that Magadh Research Institute was set up.

Class 11 English Chapter 2 Question Answers Bihar Board Question 4.
Where is Nalanda ? What was it famous for in the past ?
Nalanda is in Bihar. It was famous for its University in the past.

B. 1. Answer the following questions briefly :

Class 11 English Chapter 2 Bihar Board Question 1.
Why had people gathered in Nalanda ?
People had gathered in Nalanda because Dr. Rajendra Prasad was going to lay the foundation stone of Magach Research Institute there to revive the ancient glory of Nalanda.

Ancient Seat Of Learning Meaning In Hindi Bihar Board Question 2.
What does Nalanda symbolise ?
Nalanda is the symbol of the most glorious period of India’s history.

Chapter 2 English Class 11 Bihar Board Question 3.
With which great religious teacher is Nalanda associated ?
Nalanda is associated with the great religious teacher, Lord Buddha.

Nalanda University History In English Bihar Board Question 4.
When did it emerge as a flourishing University ?
Nalanda emerged as a flourishing University sometime in the Gupta Age.

English Chapter 2 Class 11 Question Answers Bihar Board Question 5.
How long did Lord Mahavira live in Nalanda ?
Lord Mahavira lived for fourteen years in Nalanda.

Class 11 English Chapter 2 Question Answer Bihar Board Question 6.
Who was Lepa ? What did he do with Lord Buddha ?
Lepa was a rich citizen of Nalanda. He welcomed Lord Buddha with his entire wealth and possessions, and became his disciple.

Lesson 2 English Class 11th Bihar Board Question 7.
Who was Fa-Hien ? When did he visit Nalanda ?
Fa-Hien was a Chinese pilgrim. He visited Nalanda in the 4th century AD.

Chapter 2 Class 11 English Bihar Board Question 8.
When did Hieun T’sang visit India ? Why did he refer to Jataka story ?
Hieun T’sang visited India in the seventh century AD during the reign of emperor Harshavardhan.

He refers to Jatak story to say that the name Nalanda was derived from Na- alam-da, the peace of mind which Lord Buddha could not achieve in his previous births.

Nalanda University Bihar Board Class 11 English Question 9.
How was Nalanda University born ?
Nalanda University was bom with the help of charity and public donations. It was founded with an endowment created by 500 traders who purchased the land and offered it to Lord Buddha.

Class 11 English Ch 2 Question Answer Bihar Board Question 10.
How many Viharas did Nalanda have ?
Nalanda has six large Viharas.

Question 11.
What arrangements were made to meet the recurring expenditure of the University ?
The revenue of 100 villages was set apart to meet the recurring expenditure of the university. Later it rose to 200 villages.

Question 12.
Name the states that contributed to the maintenance of the Nalanda University.
Three states – Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Bengal contributed to the maintenance of the Nalanda University.

B. 2. Answer the following questions briefly :

Question 1.
How many students and teachers were at Nalanda University when Hieun T’sang visited ?
There are 10,000 students and 1,500 teachers.

Question 2.
How was the pupil-teacher ratio significant ?
This ratio was significant because teachers could pay individual attention to the education and training of their students.

Question 3.
Name the countries from where the scholars came to study and collect Buddhist literature.
Scholars came from China, Korea, Tibet, Turkistan and Mongolia to study and collect Buddhist literature.

Question 4.
What kind of library did Nalanda possess ?
Nalanda had the biggest library in Asia.

Question 5.
When was it destroyed ?
It was destroyed in the 12th century.

Question 6.
What kind of library is there in your school/college ?
Our school library has textbooks, reference books, literary and scientific books:

Question 7.
How did several manuscripts survive ?
The citizens had ensured the preservation of many rare manuscripts by getting their copies. Several of them reached Nepal and Tibet, and are still there.

Question 8.
How many lectures were delivered daily at Nalanda ?
One hundred lectures were delivered daily at Nalanda.

Question 9.
What was so unique about the academic attitude at Nalanda ? How does it compare with the academic attitude at your school/college ?
The academic attitude at Nalanda was free from any prejudice whatsoever. It was exposed to the religion and philosophy of all mankind.

The academic attitude in our school is also free from any prejudice. It is secular and no religious education is imparted.

Question 10.
How many subjects were made compulsory ?
Five subjects – grammar, logic, medical science, handicrafts and religious and philosophy were made compulsory.

Question 11.
What appeal does Dr. Rajendra Prasad make to the people ?
Dr. Rajendra Prasad appealed to the people to revive the educational system of a bygone era, and re-establish Nalanda as a centre of art, literature, philosophy, religion and science.

C. 1. Long Answer Questions :

Question 1.
Describe, after Dr. Rajendra Prasad, the academic activities at Nalanda. Assess the activities at your school/college in the light of the academic activities at Nalanda.
According to Dr. Rajendra Prasad, Nalanda was a centre of higher education. There were about 10,000 students and 1,500 teachers. Obviously, a teacher had only six students to train. This was good from academic point of view because there was a close relationship between the guru and the shishya. Every student could get an individual attention. There were five compulsory subjects. The subjects were useful for all-round development of the students and made them capable to live healthily and usefully. The library was the biggest in Asia.

It was an honour to be a student at Nalanda. Scholoars from far off countries of Asia came there to study and collect Buddhist literature. About one hundred lectures were delivered everyday. The academic atmosphere was open, and without prejudice. Besides studies in Buddhist literature and philosophy, Vedic and allied literature was also taught. In fact, philosophy and religion of mankind was taught there.

Our school is very small and the teachers can hardly pay individual attention to their students. We have to study English and Hindi, which are useful in modern times. Besides these languages we study mathematics, science, social studies, economics, disaster management and computer. We are more worried about passing our examinations than acquiring knowledge.

Question 2.
‘The syllabus of Nalanda University was drawn with great wisdom,’ Explain.
The syllabus of Nalanda University was drawn to serve two purposes. It aimed at the all-round development of a student’s personality as well as to make him financially independent and useful member of society.

Students were taught grammar which helped them to master the language. They were taught logic which helped them to understand and judge everything rationally. They were taught medical science. It helped them to live physically healthy and help others to live healthily. They were also taught a handicraft so that they could earn a living usefully and respectably. They were also taught religion and philosophy of their choice. This helped them to develop mentally and spiritually.

Question 3.
Why were the students of Nalanda University increasingly successful in their daily life ? How did the syllabus of Nalanda University help its students ? Do you find your syllabus helpful to you ? Evaluate your own syllabus in the light of the syllabus of Nalanda University.
The root cause of the gradual increasingly success of the students of Nalanda University in their daily life were (i) the skilful preparation of the syllabus, and (ii) frequent interaction and individual care of the teachers on students. The syllabus of Nalanda University had been prepared keeping in view the practical problems which come on the way of success. The teachers used to guide the students properly. They watched their day to day activities and discipline. They took special care and precaution in building up the career of the student.

The preparation of syllabus of the university was in such a way that it could look after all round development of the student. It provided perfect knowledge to them. It included all important subjects such as Medical Science, Grammar, Languages, Logic, Crafts (Arts), architecture etc. as compulsory subjects. There were other subjects like philosophy and religion. It depended on the students to select either of them as optional subject. Thus they syllabus helped the students in carrying out their studies smoothly and building up their career.

Our syllabus has also been framed according to the need of present time. It also includes several subjects of science, arts and commerce. All the subjects of science, arts and commerce. All the subjects of the syllabus have been grouped into four faculties—Humanities, Science, Commerce and Social Science. This provision has been made according to the demand of time. Each subject provides specific and exaustive knowledge of the subject. The present syllabus has been constituted keeping in mind the present problem of employment. It provides the latest knowledge of all the subjects. It makes us aware with the knowledge of latest scientific researches and inventions, the world wide knowledge of trade and commerce.

Despite all there things the syllabus of present days cannot give the composite and moralful knowledge which the syllabus of Nalanda University provided. The purpose of the syllabus of Nalanda University was to provide the students the perfect knowledge of humanity and religion. It made the students aware with the purpose of life. The purpose of the present syllabus is to provide us knowledge to get a suitable job to lead a comfortable life.

Question 4.
What do the copper plates tell about the international relation maintained by Nalanda ? Describe in details.
Many copper plates have been found at Nalanda in the course of archeological excavations. A few of them are the records of the visit of Maharaja Dharampal Deva and Devapal Deva of Bengal as the inscription over them show. Statues of those kings were also found at Nalanda. One of the the copper plates shows the international relationship maintained by Nalanda. The Emperor of Swarma-Dwip (now a part of Indonesia), Shri Balputra Deva had sent his envoy to Devpal Deva, the then ruler of Magadh with a request to make a gift of five villages to Nalanda on his behalf.

As the inscription of his copper plate shows Balputra, the Emperor of Java, being deeply impressed by the achievement of Nalanda, had a large Vihar constructed here to give visible expression of his devotion to Lord Buddha. This is but an example that has survived by sheer chance and which gives us an indelible impression of the glory which Nalanda enjoyed the world over.

Question 5.
How did the scholars of Nalanda carry the torch of knowledge to foreign countries ? Give details.
Nalanda was considered a great centre of learning and knowledge in the world. Scholars from different countries used to visit Nalanda to study religion and philosophy. Nalanda was also a great centre of research. Scholars used to visit Nalanda to research on Buddhism. Thonim Sambhot, a Tibetan scholar was sent to Nalanda by Chang Gampo, the Emperor of Tibet to learn Sanskrit. He introduced and popularised Sanskrit and Indian knowledge in his country. He also studied Buddhistic and Brahmanical Literature under the guidance of Acharya Deva Vidya Sinh.

In the 8th century A.D. Acharya Shanti Rakchit, the chancellor of Nalanda University travelled to Tibet on the invitation from the Emperor. After sometime Acharya Kamal Shila, the chief authority on “Tantra Vidya” also visited Tibet. The scholars of Nalanda also learnt the Tibetan language. They translated Budhhist and Sanskrit words in Tibetan. By presenting the entire thing in new way in Tibet, they gradually converted its Rakshit of Nalanda for the first time in 749 A.D. in Tibet. It is also believed that the Korean Scholars came to study the Vinay and Abhidharma at Nalanda.

Question 6.
“Nalanda is the symbol of the most glorious period of our history.” How ? Explain.
Nalanda was known for the greatest centre of learning and research in the world. The scholars from different countries used to visit Nalanda University to study religion and philosophy, to learn Buddhism. It bound together the various parts of Asia with links of knowledge at that time. There was no national and racial distinction of knowledge at Nalanda. The history of Nalanda dates back to the age of Lord Buddha and Lord Mahavira. According to Jain records, Lord Mahavira met Acharya Maukhila at Nalanda. He had lived here for 14 years.

Lepa, a rich citizen of Nalanda welcomed Lord Budha and offered his entire wealth and possessions and became his disciple. It is mentioned in the book “Sutra Kritanga”. The learned historian of Tibet “Lama Taranath” had written in his book that Nalanda was the birth place of ‘Sariputra’, a prominant person of the time. Emperor Ashoka had built a temple on his samabhi. Nalanda emerged as a flourishing university in the Gupta Age. Bhikshu Nagarjuna and Arya Deva were associated with Nalanda University. Chinese pilgrims Fa-Hien and Hieun T’sang had visited Nalanda and they found it at the height of its glory.

C. 2. Group Discussion :

Discuss the following in groups or pairs:

Question a.
There are no national and racial distinctions in the realm of knowledge.
Knowledge does not see caste, creed and nationalism. Whoever labours hard to acquire it, it goes with him. It requires regular studies and connection with the electronic media i.e. internet etc.

Question b.
Education is must for a fruitful life.
Education makes a man perfect. It teaches us the manner of better living. It removes the negative desire of a man. It teaches us to lead a systematic life. It also leads us to all round development. A fruitful life can’t be imagined without education.

C. 3. Composition :

Question a.
Write a letter in about 150 words to a Japanese pen friend describing the centres of learning in ancient and medieval India.
23, J. P. Narain Enclave
7th December 20
Dear Hanna,

I have just received your letter and I am glad to read that you are interested in knowing about the centre of learning in ancient and medieval India. I am sure you must have heard about Nalanda and Taksheela, These were two great centres of learning known all over Asia. Thfy were centres of Buddhist learning t it other aspects of Indian philosophy and knowledge of Brahmanical literature were also imported there. These two universities had large libraries but unfortunately they were destroyed by foreign invaders. The aim of education at these universities was not to make monks. They emphasised on the all round development of the personality of the student.

They not only imparted academic knowledge, but taught logic, grammar and even some handicrafts so that the students might earn a living respectably and settle down as householders. Indeed such was the reputation of these two centres of learning that scholars from your country, and from Korea, China, Sri Lanka and Indonesia came to study here and carried back the torch of knowledge to their native lands.

If you visit India, I will show you the remains of Nalanda, and you will nave an idea of the grandeur, this place used to be.

With best wishes.
Yours Sincerely

Question b.
Prepare a speech on the importance of library in about 200 words to be delivered at the annual function of your school/college.
Dear friends, today I am going to speak about the importance of library.

A library is a must for every institute. We are fortunate to have a good library with about 3.(XX) books.

A library has hooks on various subjects besides encyclopaedias, dictionaries, atlases, and other reference books. These books are very useful. We can find information on any place, person, building, animal, etc. We can also learn about events and discoveries. There are books on science and geography that tell us about problems like global warming and pollution. We can also’ find out about our body and how our organs work. We can leant about space and space missions.

Besides, reference books, dear friends, we can have books by great writers in Hindi and English in literature sections. If you like stories, we have a lot of them there. There are novels and plays and essays by men of letters. If you like books on adventure, you can choose any from that section. Fortunately, we have a good librarian. She is ever willing to guide us and help us to choose a book of our liking. Besides, our principal, as you know, has introduced an open-shelf system. We are free to visit the library and browse a book there. We can also borrow two books for a fortnight. But we must remember, dear friends, library books are for all of us. So, we must not spoil them, and we must return them by the due date because someone else might be in need of them. I am sure you will make a judicious use of library for your projects and for extra reading.

Thanking you.

D. Word-Study
D. 1. Dictionary use :

Ex. 1. Look up a dictionary and find out how these words are different from one another:
charity donation endowment

Ex. 2. Use the words given in’Ex. 1’in sentences of your own.
Ex. 1. charity – something that is given by an organization for helping people in need.

donation – something that is given to an organization such as charity, in order to help them.
endowment – money given to a school or a college or another institution to provide it with an income.

Ex. 2. We organized a charity show to collect money for flood-relief. We have donated blood to blood-bank in the hospital.

The elites of the society have started a helping club and have endowed it with money.

D. 2. Word-meaning :

Ex. 1. Write the synonyms of the words given below: disciple
Disciple – resolve – pursue
inscription – inspire – attitude

Ex. 2. Write the antonyms of the following words:
Revive – glory – consiousness
various – liberalism – prejudice

Bihar Board Class 11 English Book Solutions Chapter 2 Nalanda Ancient Seat of Learning 1

E. Grammar

Study the following sentences from the lesson:
(a) Lepa, a rich citizen of Nalanda, welcomed Lord Buddha.
(b) The message of Nalanda was heard across the mountains and the ocean of the Asian main-land.

The first sentence given above is in active voice, the passive equivalent of which would be:

Lord Buddha was welcomed by Lepa, a rich citizen of Nalanda. The second sentence is in the pasive voice, its active equivalent would be:

They heard the message of Nalanda across the mountains and the ocean of the Asian main-land.

Ex. 1. Now change the voice of the following sentences:

  1. Emperor Ashoka enlarged the Samadhi of Sariputra.
  2. Acharya Dingnag visited Nalanda.
  3. The revenue of 100 villages had been set apart to meet the recurring expenses.
  4. Copper-plates have been found at Nalanda.
  5. The syllabus of Nalanda University was drawn up with grer. wisdom.


  1. The Samadhi of Sariputra was enlarged by Emperor Ashoka.
  2. Nalanda was visited by Acharya Dingnag.
  3. The recurring expenses had been met by the revenue of 100 villages
  4. Nalanda has been found copper-plates.
  5. Nalanda University drawn up the syllabus with great wisdom.

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