"Malik-E-Maidan" - What is special about the largest bronze cannon at Bijapur Fort, KA ?

symbol of valour: cannon Malik-i-Maidan , Bijapur reddit.com/r

symbol of valour: cannon Malik-i-Maidan thehindu.com

The careful use of  cannons of various sizes, power and range have changed the course of history across the globe, in particular India. Today, cannons at innumerable Indian forts  are rich pieces of heritage because they provide a lot of information on metallurgy, production process, history and wars that have been fought in the last few centuries. Cannons of Deccan region played an important role in various wars fought in that vast region

"Malik-E-Maidan", a 55 tonnes bronze cannon cast in 1549 in the Sultanate of Ahmadnagar (now in Maharashtra) is at Burj-E-Sherz (Lion tower), Bijapur Fort  in Karnataka and is considered as one of the largest medieval guns ever made then. 

Cannon Malik-i-Maidan Bijapur fort, KA.diksoochi.blogspot.com

Cannon Malik-i-Maidan Bijapur fort, KAdiksoochi.blogspot.com

Made of  an alloy of copper, iron and tin and when struck sounds like a bell (measuring 4.45 metres (14.6 ft) in length, muzzle gauge:700 millimeters (28 in) with 1.5 metres (4 ft 11 in) in overall diameter, it is said, when fired, cannonball could travel right up to the range of 500 metres (1,600 ft) and the impact would  be devastating.  The great Muzzle is fashioned into the shape of a lion or a dragon with open jaws, with sharp curved teeth swallowing  a small elephant on both sides of the muzzle.

Designed by a cannon specialist ( as per inscriptions on it) from Turkey one Muhammad Bin Husain Rumi in the employ of Sultan Burhan Nizam Shah I of Ahmednagar, the  cannon was gifted to his son-in-law  Sultan Ali Adil Shah I of Bijapur  by the ruler. sultan presented the big cannon as a gift to his son-in-law. Sultanate  employed Turkish masters to produce cast-bronze cannons with effective power and range. The outer surface is dark green and polished like glass and adorned with inscriptions in Persian and Arabic. The small ears are drilled into holes to attach tackles.

Both armies of Vijayanagara and the sultanates had  excellent artillery troops and cannons but the massive ''Malik-E-Maidan"cannon with its stunning fire power, range and size of the cannon balls  was the trump card and this heavy bronze cannon gave an edge over the Vijayanagara army,besides combined sultanate armies.

Ahmednagar sultan,India  Nizam ShahI

Deccani sultanates, India.en.wikipedia.org

In the 15th century, the Deccani sultans of Bijapur, Bidar, Ahmednagar and Golconda Sultanates  formed a military  alliance to annihilate  the Vijayanagara kingdom which was a mighty force to reckon with. The battle of Talikota (near the Krishna river (Andhra) in January 1565 was a watershed battle  and with the death of Rama Raya, the allied sultanate forces came out victorious. 

The correct use of combined artillery power and positioning of Massive Malik-E-Maidan", a 55 ton bronze cannon at vantage points  helped the Deccani sultans  win the war. After the victory  Sultanates named the cannon as "The Malik-i-Maidan" meaning Master of the Field or Master of the Battlefield,

 Bijapur fort, KAdiksoochi.blogspot.com

In 1624 AD Sultan Malik Amber of Ahmednagar, transported the  heavy cannon Malik–i-Maidan from Daulatabad fort  to Sholapur using  trained war elephants  to fight against the Moguls and  Bijapur Sultans. Finally, it was installed at Bijapur fort. as a vestige of the legacy of Ahmednagar on the Sherzi-Buruz, the Lion Tower, It is named so because of two  lions carved ion the stone wall  of the entrance that leads to the tower platform on which the gun is installed..