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Unit 1 – Multiple Choice Questions


1) Which of the great religious systems below were characterized by monotheism combined with a sacred text and a strong missionary thrust?

        a) Buddhism and Confucianism

        b) Buddhism and Hinduism

        c) Christianity and Judaism

        d) Christianity and Islam

        e) Islam and Judaism


2) Which of the following is true of both the Roman Empire and the Han Empire?

        a) Both empires were heavily dependent on slave labor.

b) Both empires where characterized by long periods of effective centralized governance.

c) In both empires maritime trade was important.

d) In both empires administrative officials were selected by elaborate system of competitive examinations.

e) Both empires were ruled by wealthy merchant elites.


3) All of the following were part of the Confucian social order EXCEPT

        a) loyalty to the ruler

        b) filial obedience to one’s father

        c) respect for the old

        d) chastity by wives

        e) chastity by husbands


4) Which of the following lived about one thousand years after the other four?

        a) Socrates

        b) Confucius

        c) Muhammad

        d) Laozi (Lao-tzu)

        e) Siddhartha Gautama (Buddha)


5) Which of the following religions would most likel use the following symbols: the lotus, the wheel, the endless knot, the conch shell, and the pair of fish?

        a) Confucianism

        b) Christianity

        c) Judaism

        d) Buddhism

        e) Islam


6) Which of the following best describes patriarchal gender systems?

        a) Women are not allowed to work.

        b) Women are confined to the home.

        c) Women can be bought and sold.

        d) Women are inferiors and must be protected by men.

        e) Women are not allowed by men to serve as political rulers.


7) Which of the following characterizes trade between the Roman Empire and India during the first two centuries C.E.?



Rome to India

India to Rome


Silver and Gold



Tools and Weapons

Silver and gold






Silver and Gold


Tools and Weapons

Wine and Olive Oil


8) Which statement about early humans do most scholars today agree is accurate?

        a) Humans originated in Asia, then spread to Africa

        b) Humans originated in Africa, then migrated to other continents

        c) Antarctica was inhabited by early hominids

        d) Humans appeared simultaneously throughout the world

        e) none of the above


9. The ancient civilizations of Mesopotamia and Egypt were similar in that both cultures

A.      established trade routes to China

B.       used the ziggurat form for their temples

C.       developed along rivers

D.      used a hieroglyphic writing system



10. A major impact of ancient Greece and Rome on western civilization was that

A.      the Greeks and Romans achieved a classless society, which was later copied in Western Europe.

B.       Greek sculpture and Roman architecture were much admired and copied in Western Europe in later centuries.

C.       Greece and Rome transmitted Islamic philosophy to the areas they conquered.

D.      Greek and Latin are still widely spoken in universities throughout the West.

15. All citizens in ancient Athens had the right to attend the assembly, where they could meet in the open to discuss and cast votes. This situation is an example of

A.      direct democracy

B.       totalitarianism

C.       parliamentary democracy

D.      absolutism


11. In traditional Chinese culture, which philosophy had the greatest influence on the development of social order and political organization?

A.      Taoism

B.       Shintoism

C.       Confucianism

D.      Marxism


12. The river valleys of the Tigris-Euprhates, the Nile, and the Indus were centers of civilization because they

A.      had rich deposits of iron ore and coal.

B.       were isolated from other cultural influences.

C.       were easy to defend from invasion.

D.      provided a means of transportation and irrigation.



13. The Quran, Mecca, and hijra are most closely associated with the practice of

A.      Islam

B.       Judaism

C.       Christianity

D.      Buddhism


14. A major result of the development of civilization in ancient Egypt was the

A.      conquest and settlement of Western Europe by the Egyptian empire.

B.       establishment of a democratic system of government in Egypt.

C.       establishment of trade routes between Egypt and other kingdoms.

D.      decline of agriculture as an important occupation in Egypt.


15. In traditional India, the caste system and the Hindu beliefs in karma and dharma most directly resulted in

A.      the establishment of a set of rules for each individual in society.

B.       the rapid industrialization of the economy.

C.       a strong emphasis on the acquisition of wealth.

D.      a strong belief in the importance of education.



16. India's earliest civilizations were located in

A.      mountainous areas

B.       river valleys

C.       coastal regions

D.      dry steppes


17. One result of the Neolithic Revolution was

A.      an increase in the number of nomadic tribes.

B.       a reliance on hunting and gathering for food.

C.       the establishment of villages and the rise of governments.

D.      a decrease in trade between cultural groups.


18. The Eightfold Path, the Four Noble Truths, and the concept of nirvana are associated with the religion of

A.      Islam

B.       Jainism

C.       Shinto

D.      Buddhism


19. One similarity in the Mesopotamian, Egyptian, ancient Indian (Harappan), and ancient Chinese civilizations was that they each developed

A.      democratic governments.

B.       monotheistic religions

C.       irrigation systems.

D.      industrialized economies.


20. The silk road was important to China because it provided

A.      contact with other cultures through trade.

B.       a means of administering civil service examinations.

C.       a military route for the defense of the northern border.

D.      a means for the country to expand its borders.

21. According to the teachings of Confucius, the key to the successful organization of society is that

A.      the ruler should be chosen democratically.

B.       the evil in humans must be eliminated.

C.       ancestor worship should be discontinued.

D.      individuals should know and do what is expected of them.


22. A major contribution of the Roman empire to western society was the development of

A.      gunpowder

B.       the principles of feudalism

C.       monotheism

D.      an effective legal system


23. The early civilizations of the Nile River Valley, Mesopotamia, and the Huang He were similar because they were

A.      dependent on fertile land.

B.       monotheistic.

C.       industrialized societies.

D.      dependent on each other for trade.


24. The invention of writing systems and the growth of cities occurred only in civilizations that

A.      originated in South America

B.       developed matriarchal leadership.

C.       developed complex institutions.

D.      borrowed heavily from the Greeks and Romans.


25. The Upanishads, the Ramayan, and the Bhagavad Gita are considered to be significant pieces of

Indian literature because they

A.      provide guidelines for Hindu living and behavior.

B.       identify basic Buddhist principles.

C.       show the constant class struggle in Indian life.

D.      reflect the similarities between the Hindu and Muslim religions.



26)                Compared to a Chinese nobleman, a peasant in classical China differed in all of the following EXCEPT

a.        likelihood of literacy

b.       level of wealth

c.        likelihood of belief in a number of gods or spirits of nature

d.       dependence on land as the basic economic resource

e.        belief in the cycles of history


27)                The “Son of Heaven” concept was designed to promote all of the following EXCEPT

a.        loyalty of the emperor

b.       centralization of power in the state

c.        priest’s control of the state

d.       the remoteness of the emperor from subjects

e.        an explanation of the decline of dynasties


28)                Chinese views of nature emphasized

a.        harmony and balance

b.       a powerful, all-seeing God

c.        that nature was uncontrollable

d.       that the key to understanding lay through scientific experiments

e.        deities that punished sinful people


29)                All of the following constituted a function of government in Han China EXCEPT

a.        schools for aspiring bureaucrats

b.       road building

c.        census taking

d.       aid to unwed mothers

e.        exerting military and legal power


30)                Which of the following best describes BOTH the Roman and Han empires

a.        the empires used the family as the model for state organization

b.       merchants were viewed as the key to the survival of both empires

c.        the cost of defending imperial frontiers led to economic and political crises

d.       emperors were “Sons of Heaven”

e.        new religions were successfully integrated into imperial religious ideologies


31)                Which of the following staple crops is most associated with the rise of Mesoamerican civilizations?

a.        manioc

b.       potatoes

c.        beans

d.       maize

e.        rice


32)                All of the following are Confucian beliefs EXCEPT

a.        a good society has a firm hierarchy

b.       Continuity is the goal of a sensible state

c.        the emperor should be obeyed like the father is obeyed in a family

d.       commendation and punishment are the two handles by which government should control society

e.        a person should exhibit ren in all of their interactions


33)                All of the following were technological innovations in China by the time of the Han dynasty EXCEPT

a.        paper

b.       paper money

c.        accurate sundials

d.       ox-drawn collar to prevent choking

e.        calendars


34)                Daoists would agree with Confucianists on which of the following:

a.        the importance of political activity

b.       scorn for greed

c.        basic harmony of nature

d.       importance of restraint in personal life

e.        the importance of tradition


35)                The Aryan conquerors brought all of the following to India EXCEPT

a.        its first civilization

b.       distinctive religious ideas

c.        caste system

d.       epic traditions

e.        advanced military technology


36)                The Indian caste system served to an extent as a political institution by

a.        unifying the subcontinent under a single government

b.       creating widespread interest in constitutional issues

c.        promoting a belief in individual rights

d.       causing unrest and rebellion

e.        enforcing rules about social behavior


37)                Buddhism and Hinduism both believe

a.        nirvana

b.       Four Noble Truths

c.        thousands of gods representing a universal spirit

d.       actively spreading the faith

e.        the caste system


38)                Christianity urged that

a.        withdrawal from the world was the only path to holiness

b.       polytheism is superior to monotheism

c.        all living creatures participated in the divine essence

d.       worship of nature’s spirits and images was blasphemous

e.        belief in a holy trinity


39)                Compared to China, Indian social and economic structure

a.        showed greater interest in technological innovation

b.       made it easier for a peasant to rise to higher status

c.        relied on conquest of foreign territories

d.       gave greater latitude to merchants

e.        tended to discourage commerce


40)                Compared to China, India

a.        lacked regional diversity

b.       had greater contact with other societies and civilizations

c.        had a more flexible social structure

d.       was more secular in outlook

e.        had much more recent origins


41)                In the classical period, both China and India

a.        showed considerable tolerance for different religions

b.       attempted to conquer the most territory possible

c.        developed a lasting tradition of strong, centralized government

d.       welcomed influences from other cultures

e.        created cultural traditions which rapidly died off


42)                Greek and Roman trade

a.        exported grain to Asia

b.       imported grain from Asia

c.        utilized Kushites for trader intermediaries

d.       was more active with China than with India

e.        was always protected by nomads from the steppe


43)                The Roman Republic shared all the following qualities of government with modern America, EXCEPT

a.        a strong executive

b.       elected leaders

c.        checks on the power of the executive

d.       universal suffrage

e.        Senate as a lawmaking body


44)                Roman emperors tried to content the masses by

a.        dividing the great landed estates

b.       granting the vote

c.        abolishing slavery

d.       organizing food supplies and distribution

e.        enlarging the empire


45)                Which of the following occurred as a result of the development of agriculture in societies that previously relied on hunting and gathering

a.        conditions for women improved

b.       incidence of disease declined

c.        polytheism disappeared

d.       population density increased

e.        degradation of the environment lessened


46)                Greek politics resembled Indian politics in

a.        the wide interest in diverse political theory

b.       the role of slaver labor in providing revenues

c.        the inclusion of women as political leaders

d.       the tendency of regional fragmentation

e.        the use of military rulers


47)                From a Confucian viewpoint, the Roman Empire might have been criticized for placing too much confidence  in

a.        divine backing for the emperor

b.       public works functions

c.        laws rather than trained officials

d.       harsh punishments of criminals

e.        religious conviction


48)                The eastern portion of the Roman empire experienced less decline than the west for all the following reasons EXCEPT

a.        the east had older traditions of civilization

b.       the east resisted the spread of Christianity

c.        the east faced less pressure from barbarian invasions

d.       the east had more active trade

e.        the east was more wealth


49)                Compared to Hinduism and Buddhism, all of the following constitute distinctive features of late-Roman Christianity EXCEPT

a.        intolerance for competing beliefs

b.       belief in a divine trinity

c.        belief that an evil life will be punished

d.       a strong hierarchy of church officials

e.        a strong evangelizing impulse


50)                The “lessons” of late Han China and the late Roman empire are that the decline of a civilization, whether temporary or permanent,

a.        is not simply the result of attack by outside invaders

b.       follows inevitably from centralized, unrepresentative government

c.        results from undue dependence on slavery

d.       results from social rebellion in which the poor attack the rich and tear down their institutions

e.        results from a lack of religious conviction







Essay Question - Dynasties


The Han Dynasty of China was one of the most sophisticated and advanced urban cultures in the world during the time period of this unit.  Compare and contrast it with ONE of the following empires or cultural regions:

                Roman Empire

                Classical Greece

                New Kingdom Egypt


In your essay, compare and contrast three of the following:

·         functions and structures of states (political systems)

·         impacts of technology on people and the environment

·         the status and roles of women

·         interactions with other cultures or societies

·         religions and/or philosophies