Posted first on March 14, 2013by annetbell
These handsome guards asked if we wanted pictures with them, so of course we did. Then they asked for money! Jaipur is definitely more of a tourist town. They got us! We were ready later.
This is one of the five observatories built by Sawai Jai Singh II and is the best preserved and largest. The park contains sixteen instruments and after four hundred years some are still used to forecast hot summers, the expected date of arrival, intensity and duration of the annual monsoons as well as the possibility of floods and famine. The observatory has been described as a “most realistic and logical landscape ever made of stone.”
This small sundial calculates Jaipur’s time to an accuracy of 20 seconds!
Our visits to this observatory and the one in Delhi were an assignment for the students. They were to draw and observe, as research, for their final design project. The project is to design an Astronomical Research Center as part of the development of the riverfront in Ahmedabad, while incorporating Le Corbusier’s Millowners’ Building which is directly behind the site. David studied Physics in college and grad school and has still maintained his passion for astronomy. During the last few years, he has integrated astronomy and architecture in design projects giving students some insight into Physics. One student, on his own, has bought and read The Theory of Relativity and now is reading a Stephen Hawking book.
India has a long history with interest in astronomy. It is widely believed that one of the Wise Men in the Christmas story was from here. Much to David’s disappointment, the Indian love for the stars seems not to have started with a passion for science,but because of a cultural curiosity for astrology. Every morning horoscopes are an important section of the news for the day and are consulted when Indians make life decisions.
Nameste….T I I
This is a section of the 12 piece structure representing the signs of the zodiac. It is used by astrologers to draw up horoscopes.