Jantar Mantar JaipurEmperor Sawai Jai Singh II,the builder of the city has to his credit five observatories in different parts of the country. The one he raised at Jaipur is the largest and the best preserved. Huge instruments in intricate masonry offer an accurate measurement of time, the declination of the sun, the altitude and the azimuth, the position of constellations in the sky for the day, the eclipses and the allied astronomical phenomena.
Jantar Mantar was conceptualised with the primary aimof unraveling the mystery of outer space. In the days of yore, Jantar Mantar served the purpose of carrying out astronomical observations and also inspired and motivated many to become interested in the science of astronomy, at a time when the society at large had become entangled in silly superstition and religious bigotry.
Some of the astronomical apparatuses on display at Jantar Mantar are the Samrat Yantra, Ram Yantra, Jaiprakash Yantra along with a gigantic hemisphere on the northern parapet.
Under the instigation of Emperor Muhammed Shah, Sawai Jai Singh II was given the extra ordinary task of correcting the anomalies of the astronomical chart. Not only did he accomplish the task successfully but his brilliant astronomical mind provided him with his place in the sun alongside some of the world's greatest observatory designers like Ulug Beg and John Flamsteed.
If historical records are any indicators, it is believed that Sawai JaiSingh had sent his emissaries all across the world in his bid to accumulate as much state-of-the-art information pertaining to astronomy as he possibly could, prior to the construction of Jantar Mantar. From a labyrinth of guides and booklets on astronomy, Sawai Jai Singh choose to build his observatory in accordance to the renowned La Hire's Table.