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The Jaivana (Hindi: जयवाण) cannon is a wheeled cannon.

It is located at the Jaigarh Fort, Jaipur (India) at (26°58′48.03″N 75°50′37.29″E / 26.9800083°N 75.8436917°E / 26.9800083; 75.8436917). It was cast in 1720, by Jai Singh II of Jaipur the administrator of Jaigarh Fort during the reign of the Mughal Emperor Muhammad Shah. The formidable strength of its builder, the scientifically inclined warrior Sawai Jai Singh II, lay in the large number of artillery and copious supply of munitions which he maintained.

The cannon from the rear

Jaivan rests on a high four-wheeled carriage. The front wheels are 2.74 m (9.0 ft) in diameter and the rear wheels are 1.37 m (4.5 ft) in diameter.

The barrel[edit]

The length of the barrel of the cannon is 6.15 m (20.2 ft) and it weighs 50 tons. The circumference near the tip of the barrel is 2.2 m (7.2 ft) and that of the rear is 2.8 m (9.2 ft). The barrel has floral design. An elephant rests on the tip of the barrel and a pair of peacocks are carved in the centre. A pair of ducks also decorates the rear of the barrel. The diameter of the bore of the barrel is 28 cm (11 in) and the thickness of the barrel at the tip is 21.6 cm (8.5 in). The thickness gradually increases as one moves towards the rear of the barrel. The two thick rings on the barrel were used for lifting it with the help of a crane which, though incomplete, is still lying in Jaigarh.

A 776-millimetre-long (30.6 in) elevating screw was used for raising and lowering the barrel.

Reportedly, it took four elephants to swivel it around on its axis

Myths of the Jaivana and its firing power[edit]

About 100 kg (220 lb) of gunpowder fired a shot ball weighing 50 kg (110 lb).

The uses and range of the cannon and cannonballs vary over different sources. Some say the Jaivana Cannon was only fired once by the Jai Singh II, as a test-fire in 1720 and the then Mughal Emperor Muhammad Shah is known to have attended the event before ousting the Sayyid Brothers from power. The most exaggerated myth claims that the weapon had a range of 40 km (25 mi), other sources say it is 35, 22 and 11 km (6.8 mi), although the exact range could perhaps never be determined without adequate scientific computation. Most sources agree that it was fired in the direction of Chaksu. The impact is said by many[who?] to be powerful enough to have caused a depression where a pond can be seen today. The Jaivana cannon is the largest wheeled cannon ever constructed.


R.S. Khangarot, P.S. Nathawat- Jaigarh the invincible fort of Amber(1990), Raj Kmar Parnami, RBSA Publishers, Jaipur