MADINAH: One of the famous traditions of the holy month of Ramadan is the firing of the cannon at Maghreb prayers to notify worshippers that it is time to break their fast.
Just before sahoor, it is fired again to announce that it is time for Fajr prayers.
The first city to fire a Ramadan cannon was Cairo in the era of the Mamluks, specifically during the reign of Sultan Khashukdume (865/872 Hijri). As the story goes, he wanted to try one of his new cannons and the experiment coincided with the time of Maghreb prayers during Ramadan.
Residents thoughout the sultanate purposely fired the cannon to notify worshipers. Prominent figures and the elite of society went to the sultan and thanked him for his kind gesture, and the tradition continues until this day.
Madinah followed the Egyptian tradition in firing the Ramadan cannon. There are two cannons in the city, with the first on Salaa Mountain. The signal to fire the cannon is the lighting of the lighthouse in a red color.
During the reign of King Faisal, the second cannon was placed on the hill outside Quba Castle.