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UPSC IAS Prelims 2021: Important Questions on Modern History - Topic 2 (Invasion and Settlement of Europeans in India)

Sakshi Saroha

UPSC Prelims 2021: Portuguese were the first Europeans to come to India when in 1498, Vasco da Gama discovered a direct sea route to India. He set up a trading factory at Cannanore. The Dutch (People of Netherlands), came to India and founded their first factory in Masaulipatam in Andhra in 1605. They were followed by the English and French. Europeans came to India for trade, but in due course of time, they gained political and administrative dominance over the country.

Ruled by the Europeans for more than 300 years, the Invasion and Settlement of Europeans in India itself become one of the most important topics of Modern Indian History. To help the UPSC aspirants in their preparation and revision, we have provided 10 questions based on the latest UPSC Prelims pattern. These questions have been framed by the subject expert on the topic.

Also Check: Important Topics to Prepare from Modern History

 Topic-wise Important Questions on Modern Indian History

Ques 1:  Who among the following was the first European to come to India?

a) Portuguese

b) British

c) French

d) Dutch

Ans: a


Portuguese was the first European to come to India. They established trading stations at Calicut, Cochin, and Cannanore. Hence, A is the correct option.

Ques 2: Consider the following statements:

  1. Portuguese Governor in India Francisco de Almeida introduced the ‘Policy of imperialism
  2. Alfonso de Albuquerque was the first Portuguese Governor in India who captured Goa from the ruler of Bijapur.

Which of the given statements is not correct?

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a) 1 only

b) 2 only

c) Both 1 and 2

d) Neither 1 nor 2

Ans: a


Alfonso de Albuquerque was the second Portuguese Governor in India who introduced the ‘Policy of Imperialism’. 

Ques 3: Who among the following British explorer and adventurer and one of the first to make an overland journey to India?

a)  Francis Dey

b) John Mildenhall

c) Gerald Angier

d)  Captain Hawkins

Ans: b


John Mildenhall or John Midnall was a British explorer and adventurer and one of the first to make an overland journey to India. He was the self-styled ambassador of the British East India Company in India. 

Ques 4: Which of the following European wars flared up the first Carnatic Wars in India?

a) War of Spanish succession

b) War of Austrian succession

c) War of devolution

d) Franco-Prussian war

Ans: b


The First Carnatic War was the Indian theatre of the War of the Austrian Succession and the first of a series of Carnatic Wars that established early British dominance on the east coast of the Indian subcontinent.

Ques 5:  Consider the following statements 

  1. The Portuguese provided cartaz to the ships carrying commodities.
  2. Dutch’s first factory in India was established at Pulicat.
  3. The English Ambassador Captain Hawkins arrived at Jehangir’s Court.

Which of the given statements is/are correct?

(a) 1 and 2 only

(b) 2 and 3 only

(c) 1 and 3 only

(d) All of the above

Ans: c


The Dutch East India Company was created in 1602 as “United East India Company” and its first factory in Masulipattanam in 1605, followed by Pulicat in 1610, Surat in 1616, Bimilipatam in 1641 and Chinsura in 1653.

Ques 6: The land of Bombay was given to the English Prince Charles as Dowry by the

a) Danish

b) Portuguese

c) Dutch.

d) English

Ans: b


In 1661, King Charles II of England married Catherine of Braganza. As a marriage treaty, the King was given a huge dowry by the Portuguese. As a part of that dowry, Portugal handed over the city of Bombay and Tangiers to Charles II on 3rd July 1661.

Ques 7: The first Anglo-Burmese War concluded by a treaty popularly known as….

a) Treaty of Burma

b) Treaty of Tamu

c) Treaty of Bhamo

d) Treaty of Yandaboo.

Ans: d


The Treaty of Yandabo was signed by Gen. Campbell from the British side and Governor of Legaing Maha Min Hla Kyaw Htin from the Burmese side on 24 February 1826. The Burmese paid 250,000 pounds sterling in gold and silver bullion as the first installment of the indemnity, and also released British prisoners of war.

Ques 8:  The state which granted the Golden Farman to the Dutch to trade freely on payment of a duty was:

a) Chandragiri

b) Golconda

c) Gingee

d) Ikkeri

Ans: b


Golconda state granted the Golden Farman to the Dutch to trade freely on payment of more 500 pagodas a year as a duty.

Ques 9: Who was the founder of Madras city?

a) Robert Clive

b) Francis Day

c) Gabriel Boughton

d) Streysham Master

Ans: b


Francis Day and his superior Andrew Cogan can be considered as the founders of Madras (now Chennai). They began construction of the Fort St George on 23 April 1640 and houses for their residence.

Ques 10: Who captured Ormuz of Hormuz in the Persian Gulf from the Portuguese in 1622?

a) English

b) French

c) Dutch

d) Spaniards

Ans: c


In 1622, with the help of four English ships, Abbas retook Hormuz from the Portuguese in the Capture of Ormuz. In 1622 when the Persians retook Hormuz, the Portuguese Empire was one of the largest and most powerful empires in the world.

We sincerely hope that the given questions would have helped you in your Prelims preparation. You can also check the below link to keep yourself updated on the latest GK quiz and events. 

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