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Jantar Mantar (Jaipur)

View of the Samrat Yantra, the largest sundial
in the world.
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The Jantar Mantar in Jaipur is an astronomical observatory built by Maharaja Jai Singh II at his then new capital of Jaipur between 1727 and 1733.It is modelled after the one that he had built for him at the then Mughal capital of Delhi. He had constructed a total of five such labs at different locations, including the ones at Delhi and Jaipur. The Jaipur observatory is the largest of these. The Jantar Mantar is a collection of architectural astronomical instruments among which the Samrat Yantra.

Name
The name is derived from yantra, instrument, and mantra, for chanting; hence the 'the chanting instrument'.

Description
The observatory consists of fourteen major geometric devices for measuring time, predicting eclipses, tracking stars in their orbits, ascertaining the declinations of planets, and determining the celestial altitudes and related ephemerides. Each is a fixed and 'focused' tool.

The Samrat Jantra, the largest instrument, is 90 feet high, The Hindu chhatri (small domed cupola) on top is used as a platform for announcing eclipses and the arrival of monsoons.

They are built on a large scale so that accuracy of readings can be obtained. The samrat yantra, for instance, which is a sundial, can be used to tell the time to an accuracy of about two seconds in Jaipur local time. Today the main purpose of the observatory is to function as a tourist attraction
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This observatory is one of the most beautiful monuments I have seen in Rajasthan.
I was lucky to visit it late in the afternoon, which can explain the golden light.
This photography was created by stitching 4 or 5 pictures.

sources :
Wikipedia - Jantar Mantar (Jaipur)
to know more
Architecture in the Service of Science by Barry Perlus

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Additional Photos by Henry Troisfontaines (henrytf) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 98 W: 42 N: 165] (985)
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