Class 11 History

Changing Cultural Traditions

NCERT Exercises

Question 1: Which elements of Greek and Roman culture were revived in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries?

Answer: Following elements of Greek and Roman culture were revived in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries:

Question 2: Compare details of Italian architecture of this period with Islamic architecture.


Italian ArchitectureIslamic Architecture
Heavily influenced by classic Greek architectureInfluenced by many styles, like classic Greek, Byzantine, etc.
Multi-storied buildings were common.Single-storied buildings were common.
Public buildings were made around a crossroads.Open courtyard was common for public buildings.
Fountains with statues are common at public places.Fountains with gardens are common.
Plenty of human figures used for decoration.Geometric patterns and calligraphy replaced human figures.

Question 3: Why were Italian towns the first to experience the ideas of humanism?

Answer: The first universities came up in Italian towns. The contemporary scholars argued that religious texts alone were not sufficient for complete education of a person. They advocated that education should be imparted in ‘humanities’ to develop good qualities in individuals. Due to this, Italian towns were the first to experience the ideas of humanism.

Question 4: Compare the Venetian idea of good government with those in contemporary France.

Answer: France was under the rule of monarch. In this system, the monarchy, nobility and the clergy controlled the power. Common people did not have a say in governance. Common people were always at the mercy of rulers. In Venice, there was a republican system for governance, in which rich merchants and bankers actively participated. This helped in development of idea of citizenship. Every person enjoyed certain level of basic rights and freedom.

Question 5: What were the features of humanist thought?

Answer: Following are the features of humanist thought:

Question 6: Write a careful account of how the world appeared different to seventeenth-century Europeans.

Answer: By the start of the seventeenth century, Europe had changed dramatically than what it was during the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. Immense developments had taken place in the field of scientific discoveries. God and the Church were no longer the dreaded powerful entities. It may not have been the case in other parts of the world. For an average European of the seventeenth century, the rest of the world may have been a place of ignorant people without an iota of scientific temper and artistic sensibilities. This belief must have been further strengthened during various explorations of other parts of the world because they encountered some primitive tribes during explorations to the Latin America and South America.