A huge number of unexploded rockets from the 18th centuries were discovered by a group of archaeologists at Shivappa Nayaka Palace Museum situated on the bank of river Tunga on Sunday.
Shejeshwar, Commissioner of District Archaeological Department, said the findings are proof of the fact that rocket science technology existed in the 18th century.
"In 2002 we had identified some iron rockets looking like shells in Malnad region. We took six years for searching in Hosanagara Taluk and unearthed 1700 rockets on July 27, 2018. We noticed similar structures in British (England) and Bengaluru museum but they do not have explosive content inside the rockets. But the current rockets proved that rocket science technology existed in the 18th century."
According to the Archaeological department, the museum was built by then ruler Shivappa Nayaka of Keladi dynasty (1645-1660). The Karnataka government restored it and named it Shivappa Nayaka palace museum in 1983.
From Outlook Archive:
The Battle of Pollilur, 1780, is a great favourite of history buffs and technologists alike. The clash, near Kancheepuram, ended with the surrender of British troops to the Mysore army of Hyder Ali and his son Tipu Sultan, a celebrated victory at the centre of which is a mystery that lasts to this day—the Mysore rocket. That Hyder and Tipu flustered the East India Company’s soldiers with their fireworks is a well-known tale from history. There are accounts of some of these skirmishes by later writers. We also know that, when Tipu fell in 1799, the British took away some of the rockets, and it is from those that William Congreve is said to have later developed his eponymously-named missile.
Last year, Karnataka’s archaeology department dug up about a thousand Mysore rockets from an areca nut farm in Nagara, a small town close to the steep ridges of the Western Ghats in Shimoga district. The find is believed to hold out the promise of answers to a range of nagging questions about a piece of technology that appeared suddenly like a bright flame in an era of turmoil and then, equally swiftly, disappeared from the region that developed it. Experts opined that these rockets belonged to Tipu Sultan's dynasty.
(With inputs from ANI)