Jantar Mantar (Yantra – instruments, mantra – formulae or instruments for calculation) is an astronomical observatory with masonry instruments which was constructed in 1724. The mathematician and astronomer king, Maharaja Jai Singh II of Jaipur who built this observatory in Dilli, later during 1727 – 1734, went on to build other observatories in Jaipur, Ujjain, Varanasi and Mathura. Jai Singh had found the existing astronomical instruments too small to take correct measurements and so he built these larger and more correct ones.
The observatories, or “Jantar Mantar” as they are commonly known, joins multiple buildings of unique form, each with a specialized function for astronomical measurement. These structures with their striking combinations of geometric forms at large scale, have captivated the attention of architects, artists, and art historians worldwide, yet remain largely unknown to the public.
There is a colossal Samrat Yantra at the periphery of Jantar Mantar. To the south of Samrat Yantra there is an amazing instrument called Jai Prakash. The Jai Prakash has two concave hemispherical structures and used for determining the position of the sun and celestial bodies. Jantar Mantar is built of brick rubble that is plastered in lime. You can find the following instruments here:
• Samrat Yantra
• Jai Prakash
• Ram Yantra
• Niyati Chakra
• Mishra Yantra
The instruments at Jantar Mantar can graph the path of the astronomical universe and are fascinating for their ingenuity, but exact observations can no longer be made from here because of the presence of tall buildings around. In recent times, scholars prefer to refer to these instruments as a live example of the astronomical research of the past.
These days the Jantar Mantar is a hit among people who want to conduct a demonstration or a protest to fight for their rights and media along with hundreds and thousands of people can often be seen in the vicinity of this place. It is open to public from 10 am to 6 pm. The entry to this amazing astronomical observatory is free and it is located at the city center next to Saddi Dilli’s corporate jungle Connaught Place.