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Here we are confronted with two major questions, for only one of which I think an answer is possible, whereas the second cannot safely be answered for lack of documentary evidence. Question number one concerns the notion of ghubar. On the contrary, in the Arabic West we find book titles like hisab al-ghubar on Hindu reckoning and terms like huruf al-ghubar or qalam al-ghubar for the numerals used in the Hindu reckoning system. The oldest occurrence so far noticed of the term is in a commentary on the Sefer Yesira by the Jewish scholar Abu Sahl Dunas ibn Tamlm.

He was active in Kairouan and wrote his works in Arabic. It is the shortest [form of] calculation. It will then further be clear that the terms huruf al-ghubar or qalam al-ghubar dust letters or symbols for the nine signs of the numerals used in this system of cal- culation basically described the written numerals as such, without specification of their Eastern or Western Arabic forms.

This is corroborated by some known texts that put the huruf al-ghubar, written numerals, in opposition to the num- bers used in other reckoning systems that had no written symbols, such as finger reckoning and mental reckoning. In favor of this interpretation may be quoted some of the texts first produced by Woepcke. The designation thus refers to the written numerals as such, as opposed to numbers in other reckoning systems that did not use written symbols.

Here one might ask why the Arabic West developed forms of the num- erals different from those in the East. It is hard to imagine a reason for this development, especially when we assume — in conformity with our under- standing of the birth and growth of the sciences in the Maghrib and al-Andalus in general — that the Hindu reckoning system came to the West like so many texts and so much knowledge from the Arabic East. That the Eastern Arabic numerals were also known in al-Andalus is dem- onstrated by several Latin manuscripts that clearly show the Eastern forms, for example, MSS Dresden C 80 2nd half 15th century , fols.

So far, the oldest specimen of Western Arabic numerals that became known to me occurs in an anonymous treatise on auto- matic water-wheels and similar devices in MS Florence, Or. Two other texts in this section of the manuscript are dated to and , respectively figures 1.

The numerals in two other Maghrebi manuscripts that fell into my hands figures 1. It must be regarded as natural that, together with the reckoning system, also the nine numerals became known in the Arabic West. It therefore seems out of place to adopt other theories for the origin of the Western Arabic numerals. From among the various deviant theories I here mention only two. Thus the assumed way of transmission from Alexandria to Spain is impossible and this theory can no lon- ger be taken as serious.

Recently, Richard Lemay had brought forward another theory. This might appear acceptable for the Arabic numer- als used in Latin texts. But since the Western Arabic numerals are of the same shape, that would mean that the Western Arabs broke up their series of nine numerals and replaced their 5, 6, and 8 by forms taken from European sources.

This seems highly improbable. The Western Arabs received their numerals from the East as a closed, complete, system of nine signs, and it would only appear natural that they continued to use it in this complete form, not breaking the series up and replacing single elements by foreign letters.

When one compares the Eastern and the Western Arabic forms of the numerals, one finds that they are not completely different. The Western forms of 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 9 can be recognized as being related to, or derived from, the corresponding Eastern forms. Major difficulty arises with 6, 7, and 8. He would have been best equipped to recognize this difference.

The Latin translator, or Latin adapters, would less probably have been able to notice the difference between the East- ern and Western Arabic forms of these four numerals. For further research into the matter, therefore, the discovery of older, or old, documents remains a most urgent desideratum. Lastly, I want to mention a curious piece of evidence.

Somebody in the Arabic West once found out that the Western Arabic forms of the nine num- erals resemble certain letters in the Maghrebi script and he organized their description in a poem of three memorial verses in the metre kamil. The two loci are cited by Woepcke.

They seem to have become a topic since they are cited even by an Eastern Arabic author. Perhaps one can conclude from this standardized description that the written forms of the Western Arabic numerals were less variable than the Eastern ones. To sum up, we can register that the history of the transmission of the Elindu numerals and Hindu reckoning to the Arabs in the East appears to be clear. For the Arabic West it is known that all the cultural and scientific achieve- ments of the East were transferred there.

In the stream of this cultural move- ment the knowledge of Hindu reckoning and the nine numerals must also have passed there. So far no written evidence of Western Arabic numerals for the tenth to the thirteenth centuries have been found; documents are only known from the thirteenth century on. But these numerals must have existed earlier since the first evidence in Latin sources — which took up these numerals from the Arabs in Spain — dates from The Paul Kunitzsch 16 most important task for further research would therefore be to find older West- ern Arabic material for the knowledge and use of the Hindu numerals in that region.

This manuscript was used by Boncompagni for his edition, ; Siena, Bibl. IV20 2nd half 13c. It thus appears evident that the numerals in the Leonardo manuscripts follow the forms current in the known Latin arithmetical texts.

Therefore the manuscript can no longer serve as a testimony to early forms of Western Arabic numerals. Notes 1. See Nau. Sezgin V 2 1 1. See al-Blrunl, India, ch. II, fi. About fifteen such titles up to the middle of the eleventh century are quoted by Sez- gin, V The Transmission of Hindu-Arabic Numerals Reconsidered 17 6. Al- Ya'qub! I, 93; cf. Robert , Al-Mas'udI I, p. Al-RhwarizmI, Fischer, Fihrist, I, 1 8f.

Robert Fischer, ; Robert , Pellat, b. Grohmann, f. Furthermore, he con- firmed that a second dating of that type in another papyrus, understood by Rarabacek, 13 no. This document, therefore, must no longer be regarded as the second oldest occurrence of Hindu-Arabic numerals in an Arabic document. See the quotation by Woepcke , f. II, f. II, Saidan , Gandz and I owe this information to Richard Lorch.

Ibn al-Yasamln, fi; a German translation was given by Robert , Sa'id al-AndalusI, Ibn al-Qiftl, , ult. I, Paul Kunitzsch 18 Sa'id al-Andalusi, Edited by Kunitzsch-Lorch. For Selden and Pal. Lemay , figure la. See the reproduction in van der Waerden-Folkerts, Reproduced also in van der Waerden-Folkerts, For reproductions, see, inter alios, van der Waerden-Folkerts, 58; Tropfke, 67; Folk- erts , plates See the photographs in Folkerts , plate 1.

Brentjes, Berlin, which is gratefully acknowledged. A detailed description of the manuscript was given by Sabra Rabat, al-Khizana al-'Amma, MS , p. The preceding text, ending on p. I am grateful to Prof. Degen, Munich, for bring- ing this page to my attention, and to Prof. Alaoui, Fes, and M. Essaouri, Rabat, for procuring copies of the relevant pages from the manuscript.

Kunitzsch , p. It should be added that in the table of ghubar numerals given by Souissi, , the numerals in the first two lines said to date from the 10th century and ca. Sanchez Perez, the table on p. Similarly, the specimen in line 12, ibid. Folkerts , Lemay and Folkerts , MS N, lines Woepcke , 60f. Al-Khwarizmi, Le calcul indien. Paris and Namur. Fischer, A. Folkerts, M. Ein mathematisches Lehrbuch des Mittel- alters.

Die alteste lateinische Schrift iiber das indische Rechnen nach al- Hwarizmi. Gandz, S. Grohmann, A. Grundriss der arabischen Philologie, ed. Fischer, I: Sprachwissen- schaft. Ibn al-Nadlm. Kitab al-fihrist, ed.

Fliigel, I— II. Ibn al-Qiftl. Muller and J. Ibn al-Yasamln, Abu Faris. Karabacek, J. Liber Mafatih al-olum, ed. Robert, R. Runitzsch, P. Labarta, A, and Barcelo, C. Numerosy cifras en los documentos arabigohispanos. Paul Kunitzsch 20 Lemay, R. Lemay, R. Strayer, vol. New York, Levey, M. Kushyar ibn Labban, Principles of Hindu Reckoning. Madison and Milwaukee. Muriij al-dhahab, ed. Pellat, Iff. Nau, F. Pellat, C.

Leiden, Reinaud, J. Leiden, 1 — Sa'id al-AndalusI. Tabaqat al-umam, ed. Saidan, A. The Arithmetic of al-Uqlidisi. Dordrecht and Boston. Sanchez Perez, J. La aritmetica en Roma, en India y en Arabia. Madrid and Granada. Sezgin, F. Geschichte des arabischen Schrifttums, V: Mathematik, bis ca. Souissi, M. Leiden, f. Tropfke, J. Geschichte der Elementarmathematik, vol.

Berlin and New York. Written Numbers. Woepcke, F. I, — Etudes sur les mathematiques arabo-islamiques, Nachdruck von Schriften aus den Jahren , ed. Historiae, ed. Houtsma, I — II. All these texts appear to have been written in the second quarter of the twelfth century. It was first brought to the notice of schol- ars by J. Heiberg, who quoted the incipits and explicits of the four books. Both scholars considered that the translation was made from Greek, on the grounds of its vocabulary.

But a comparison of the text with the Greek and Arabic versions of the Almagest reveals clearly that an Arabic text lies at the base of this version: 6 1. Most of the diagrams are reversed in respect to the Greek; this may have arisen out of a mistaken notion of a translator from Arabic that, since he had to reverse the direction of the script, he also had to reverse the diagrams. The terminology is based on Arabic rather than Greek. Several turns of phrase are reminiscent of other translations from Arabic.

That this is a veneer is immediately obvious when one looks for these Greek terms in the Greek text of the Almagest, for in most cases they are simply not there. Nevertheless, it is possible that the translator attempted to look at a Greek manuscript, or at least consulted someone who knew Greek. It is clear that the translator wished to give the impression that he had taken the whole text from the Greek. Whether the translation is literal can only be ascertained through a close comparison with the extant Arabic versions of the Almagest, which except for the star-tables of Books 7 and 8 are not yet edited.

It is difficult to tell whether they were originally included. That this is an addition in the original Arabic text is suggested by the presence of exactly the same forms of reference to the Elements in the text of al-NasawI see item 6 below. Of similar status are the cross-references to other theorems in the Almagest', e. Sometimes only the geometrical elements of a theorem are given, and the numeri- cal values have been omitted; e. The only substantial addition vis-a-vis the Greek text is that of several theorems on the sector-figure appended to the end of Almagest, I, chapter 13 Dresden MS, fols 13vv.

There are two characteristic features which separate this translation from other Latin translations of the Almagest whether from the Arabic or from the Greek : the terminology, and the notation for numerals. It was the notation for numerals that attracted the attention of Haskins, and this needs more careful analysis. The translator 18 began by using roman numerals only.

Then, on fol. One can construct the following key for the numerical values of the letters: 1 a 10 k t a mille 2 b 20 1 u b milia 3 c 30 m X c milia 4 d 40 n y d milia 5 e 50 o z etc. Thus, the only numbers which are correctly written in the 10s and s are 10 and themselves. As examples one may take the following: fol. We must also presume that, given the accuracy of the numbers when they are written in roman numerals, the original translator also used the alphanu- merical notation in an accurate way.

The parallel examples of Greek and Arabic alphanumerical notation illustrate how the letters, used in their Semitic order, progressively represent the units, 10s and s, and these are the parallels the translator of the Dresden Almagest would have been following. Therefore, it is impossible to know what symbols he would have used for the s between and Ho I a«mfUc. Dresden Almagest, fol. He is writing at a time when Hindu- Arabic numerals were only just beginning to be used by Latin scholars, and it is significant that he or perhaps, rather, the scribe assimilates their shapes to Latin letters.

It would be attractive to think that the author of the Liber Mamonis was influenced by the example of the Dresden Almagest and refined the alpha- numerical notation he found there, whilst also experimenting with using Hindu- Arabic numerals for the higher numbers. If the similarity between the two texts stopped here, then this would remain only a weak hypothesis.

However, of even Charles Burnett 30 greater significance is the fact that the majority of the astronomical terms in the Liber Mamonis are the same as those of the Dresden Almagest. The two works must, therefore, be related. The question arises, however, as to whether the author of the Liber Mamonis was using the contents as well as the terminology of the Dresden Almagest.

In this matter it is amazing that the intelligence of Ptolemy was deceived. For they do move. But what caused him to stumble has been proved to be a certain astronomer who preceded him, who made a false observation when seeking the position of the height of the Sun. For he had said that the apogee of the Sun was in the same place in his time as Ptolemy, who dealt with and investi- gated all the secrets of the stars more perspicaciously, correctly discovered it was in, in his own time. He made no mistake at all in finding the place; rather, his predecessor made a mistake.

Therefore, no doubts should be cast on the accuracy of Ptolemy, but one should blame the ignorance of the man who, by committing to writing something that he did not know, made a wise man stumble. These are the two poles of the zodiac which the centre of the Sun circles, according to what Ptolemy says has been dis- covered by himself and his predecessors.

The sequence of the argument for working out the relative distances of the plan- ets from parallax on fol. The description of finding the solar anomaly on fol. The limits of the movement in latitude quoted in item 6 above are rounded-off figures from Almagest, XIII, 5. If we are to suppose, on the basis of this evidence, that the author of the Liber Mamonis knew the Almagest directly, then we have to conclude that he was familiar as much with the later books as with the first four books which alone are found in the Dresden Almagest.

However, the Almagest is not the principal model for the Liber Mamo- nis, nor, perhaps, is it the principal source for the numerical values given in the Latin work. J jjltif. Scml'-i curfaffcTururfi mrurn iip» mn ipfuirr frihiumu. It- cut '. X Upiri. Hrli in orrafu Wii rap librrf; onyu amurqxntf Criij. Jupiter: 1 1 years, days, 14 hours, 29 minutes. Mars: 1 year, days, 24 hours. Venus and Mercury: 1 year, 5 hours, 49 minutes. There do not appear to be any direct quotations from the Almagest.

A clue to the direct source of the Liber Mamonis may be hidden in its title itself. It is unlikely that the Liber Mamonis is an allusion to the Almagest itself. These poles are neither the radius of the universe nor the radius? This remains to be checked. Yet The Transmission of Arabic Astronomy via Antioch and Pisa 35 the Liber Mamonis is not a translation, but rather a treatise written in a liter- ary style, which has as its leitmotif a criticism of the current doctrines in Latin cosmology, epitomized in the theories of Macrobius, and the need for their replacement by the Ptolemaic system.

The reasons for this identification have been explained in detail else- where, 42 but can be summarized here. We find the same style of literary Latin, including whole phrases, in both works; we find consultation of Greek as well as Arabic sources; but, above all, we find the same system of alpha-numerical notation. Moreover, we find a place and a date, or rather, several dates, attached to different books of the translation of the Regalis dispositio.

The place is Antioch, and the dates all fall within the year 1 Richard Hunt pointed out that there was a treasurer called Stephen at the Benedictine monastery of St Paul, one of the principal religious foundations in Antioch, who had been given a house in the city between 1 and 1 He had a strong interest and competence in astronomy; he translated from Arabic, but also had some knowledge of Greek; he had the help of Arabic-speaking colleagues.

The Dres- den Almagest is a little different from these three works: the name Stephen is not attached to it; all Arabic transliterations are avoided whereas, in the Rega- lis dispositio at least, Stephen deliberately transcribes the Arabic terms when Charles Burnett 36 he does not know the Latin equivalent; the alphanumerical notation is not as advanced, and no Hindu- Arabic numerals are used.

Nevertheless, the similari- ties between the Dresden Almagest and the Liber Mamonis are such that the work must, at least, have arisen in the same milieu, if it was not directly used by Stephen the Philosopher. One last clue associating the Dresden Almagest and the Liber Mamo- nis must be taken into account. These he appears to refer to in the body of the Liber Mamonis, 50 and he makes fre- quent references to the tables themselves.

The Eastern forms are actively used 57 only in a very restricted range of works. Charles Burnett 38 A text very similar to the anonymous instructions for the use of the Pisan Tables in the Berlin manuscript occurs in London, British Library, Arundel , fols 56vr. II, fols 37vv. Yet another text was written to accompany the Tables of Pisa: this text, known nowadays as the Fundamenta tabularum, is a schol- arly discussion of the theory of astronomical tables, drawing on many Arabic sources.

In the ear- liest manuscripts of the work the Eastern forms of the numerals are used. In the early 1 s he started to visit Jewish communities in Christian Europe, first in Rome, followed soon after by Lucca 1 , which is only some fifteen kilometers from Pisa. Examples of written Italian before the end of the twelfth century are rare; the most substantial document, in fact, is a religious poem written by a Jew in Hebrew script.

But the Harley manuscript tells us more. The original scribe, who pre- sumably wrote the text before , did not use Hindu-Arabic numerals. But between these two texts he added an astronomical table The Transmission of Arabic Astronomy via Antioch and Pisa 39 in which the numerical values aside from those of the first column which are in roman numerals are written entirely in alphanumerical notation. The nota- tion is that of the Liber Mamonis, Regalis dispositio, and the Milan Rhetorica ad Herennium, but in this case, and in this case only, a key is provided see figure 2.

The writer of the Liber Mamonis used alphanumerical notation for lower numbers, and the East- ern forms for numbers consisting of more than three digits. This mixed sys- tem occurs regularly in Islamic astronomical tables, and occasionally in Greek tables, in which alphanumerical notation is used for all numbers up to the number of degrees in the circle , but Hindu numerals are used where the num- bers do, or in principle could, reach the higher hundreds or exceed For some reason or other, however, neither the alphanumerical notation nor the mixed system caught on.

Rather, as it seems, the Eastern forms, as used in the mixed system, were used for all numerals, as we see in the Berlin manu- script of the Pisan Tables. At the beginning of his Hebrew work on arithmetic, Sefer ha-Mispar, he mentions Hindu-Arabic numerals and substitutes for them the letters of the Hebrew alphabet.

Of the several manuscripts of this text that I have seen, only one gives the Hindu-Arabic numerals in their oriental form, as an alternative to the Western forms which Ibn Ezra could have been familiar with in Spain. It could also be questioned whether Ibn Ezra was responsible for drawing up the Pisan Tables, which is inferred by modern scholars from the fact that he bases his instructions on how to use astronomical tables on the Pisan Tables.

The anonymous Latin scholar who colla- borated with Abraham ibn Ezra on writing his text on the astrolabe, and the other Latin scholars who presumably put into good Latin his instructions for the use of the Pisan Tables, belong to this group.

II all three texts, and these only, have been written in the same hand , though it uses only roman numerals. Three early copies of works by Hugo of Santalla preserve these forms, in two cases in a table only, 71 in the third case in the text. This is a twelfth-century manuscript incorpo- rated into MS London, Arundel , which is remarkable because it is one of the earliest examples we have of a Western manuscript made of paper.

Hermann of Carinthia was a student of Thierry of Chartres, and some of his translations arrived in Chartres; the Berlin manuscript of the Pisan tables is said to have originated from Chartres, though the instructions for the Pisan tables mention the longitudes of Angers and Toledo, and another text in the manuscript implies that Paris is place of writing. IV ttt. It is becoming increasingly obvious that, presum- ably under the supervision of Gerard of Cremona, there was a concerted pro- gram of revising and translating afresh those works that were perceived to be most important in astronomy and astrology.

The mechanics of the transmission of the Toledan translations and the reasons for their success are still not clear. At first sight it would seem that the translations of Greek astronomical works directly from Greek should have been preferred to the translation of their Arabic versions: but in the case of Ptolemy, Theodosius, Menelaus, Archimedes, and so many other authors, although Greek-Latin translations were made, and often made before the Toledan Arabic -Latin translations, nevertheless it was the latter which succeeded in becoming established in the scholarly community.

The same conclusion can be reached in regard to the works of Stephen the Philosopher and his colleagues. The Dresden Almagest and the Liber Mamonis both survive incomplete in one manuscript each, and both the alphanumerical notation and the Eastern forms of the Hindu-Arabic numerals failed to catch on.

Nevertheless, some credit must be given to Stephen and his friends. If the arguments that are put forward in this chapter are convincing, then the Dresden Almagest is likely to predate the earliest hitherto known translation — that made from the Greek in Sicily in ca. Both works are indicative of a considerably higher level of astronomical learning among cer- tain Latin scholars in the second quarter of the twelfth century than has hitherto been recognized, and they invite us to look to the Eastern Mediterranean, rather than to Spain, as a source for this learning.

Haskins, Studies in the History of Mediaeval Science, 2nd ed. New York, , p. The fullest account of the Liber Mamonis up to now is that of Haskins, Studies, pp. An edition of the work has been promised by Richard Lemay. I am very grateful to Menso Folkerts for lending me a microfilm of Dresden, Db.

For a description of the manuscript see Bertoldo di Moosburg, Expositio super elementationem theologicam Procli, 1 84— , De animabus, ed. Sturlese Rome, , pp. MS Dresden, Db. North, ed. Nauta and A. Vanderjagt Leiden, , pp. This fact was first pointed out to me by Richard Lorch.

Kunitzsch, Der Almagest, Wiesbaden, , p. Heiberg [Leipzig, ], p. The Latin word-order and sense follow the Arabic text here. Toomer, pp. The Greek months, however, either betray the influence of Arabic transcription fol.

A list of month names, including the Egyptian and the Greek, preceded the Almagest text in Wolfenbiittel, Gud. It is possible to imagine that the tables were left in the original form, in Greek or Arabic or merely with their rubrics glossed in Latin , and that the reader was expected to be able to interpret the numeral values: this would provide a possible reason for the adoption of alphanumerical notation the notation of the Greek and Arabic tables in the Latin text; see below.

The correspondence between the two works begins with the theorem which precedes the addition, which is the last the- orem in Almagest, I, chapter For an edition of the relevant section of the Dresden manuscript see R. The relationship between the Dresden Almagest and the work of al-NasawI needs further investigation. Both texts refer to the same earlier theorems of Ptolemy e.

I have noticed only that figure 4. They need only be distinguished when as sometimes happens it is clear that the scribe misunderstood what was in front of him. The first form, which is a distinctive symbol, may have been the original one. It is also possible that the Greek capital eta El was originally intended, and that, in copying the text on fol. Latin authors tended to use the Greek majuscule, and we have sev- eral examples of the knowledge among them of the numerical values of the Greek letters; see W.

Frakes, Washington, D. The alphanumerical notation in Liber Mamonis see below is generally rubri- cated. The Eastern forms in this manuscript are more closely assimilated to letters of the Latin alphabet than in other manuscripts. Charles Burnett 46 MS Munich, Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, elm , f. Of the terms already mentioned n. D, fol. Occasionally, the author of the Liber Mamonis uses different terminology, perhaps because of his greater familiarity with the Latin astronomical and geometrical tradition: e.

Aliorum autem qui secuti sunt deinceps astronomicorum quibus fuit etiam et hec et alia secretius rimari, sententia est in orientem moveri tardo motu, in. Qua in re mirum est Ptolomei deceptam fuisse sollertiam. Moventur enim. Illo enim in loco longuinquam Solis longinquitatem suo tempore dixerat, quo Ptholomeus perspi- catius omnia astrorum secreta discutiens et investigans suo tempore illam esse veracis- sime comperuit.

Hinc ergo deceptus Ptolomeus fuisse dicitur, tametsi non ipse nisi quod non moveri dixit. In loco enim inveniendo nichil peccavit, sed qui precesserat ipsum deceptus fuit. Non ergo Ptholomei sagacitas cecidisse arguenda est, sed illius depra- The Transmission of Arabic Astronomy via Antioch and Pisa 47 vanda ignorantia qui quod nescivit scripture tradens sapienti viro cadendi causa fuit.

Nunc satis quod pro illius defendenda industria diximus, ad nostra redeamus. Alioruin sententia est in. Hii sunt duo poli circuli signorum quern Solis centrum circinat, sicut dicit Ptolomeus sua et precedentium ratione inventum. Langermann's introduction to his edi- tion and translation of Ibn al-Haytham, On the Configuration of the World, New York and London, , especially pp.

See items 3 and 4 above. Non sunt autem hii poli aut radius poli mundi aut radius, set horum uterque a sibi proximo mundi polo. The prefaces to the Regalis dispositio are edited in the article mentioned in the following note. Draelants, A. Tihon, and B. O 62, f. MS British Library, Sloane , fol.

A comparison between the translating techniques and the terminology used in the Dresden Almagest and the Regalis dispositio might reveal further links. Italics mine. Secunde tabule numerus ab obliqua longinquitate circuli extra centrum usque. It is true that both texts criticize the opinion among the Latins that retrogradation is caused by the attraction of the rays of the Sun Florence MS, fol. Henry Bate, Descriptio instrumenti pro equatione planetarum, which follows his Magistralis compositio astrolabii , printed with Liber Abraham iudei de nativ- itatibus, Venice, , sig.

British Library, Arundel , fol. The tables are not given in this copy. For the arguments for believing that the Latin tables preserve those of al-Sufi see R. Al-Sufi served several members of the Buyid dynasty and is attested in Dinawar and Isfahan.

For a fuller account of the use of Eastern forms in Latin manuscripts and their Arabic exemplars, see C. Dold-Samplonius et al. Stuttgart, , pp. British Library, Cotton Vespasian A. II, fol. See J. Abraham Ibn Ezra, Madrid and Barcelona, This publication includes illustrations of the numeral forms in the manuscripts.

Further information is given in id. For a study of this manuscript see C. Folkerts and R. Lorch, Wiesbaden, , pp. Migliorini, in Storia della lingua italiana, Florence, , p. This table occurs elsewhere only in a later manuscript, Pommersfelden 66, fol. Two sets of numeral forms are given in the margin off. I am grateful to Tzvi Langermann for alerting my attention to these manuscripts.

See quotation in n. Millas Vallicrosa, p. See C. See R. This article includes an edition of the text. B, 34, fols 32vr; the third copy, ibid. For a thorough description of the manuscripts, see V Rose, Verzeichniss der latein- ischen Handschriften. For the inhabitants of Pisa and Angers, see fol. For the diffusion of these manuscripts in Normandy and England see C. Haskins, Studies, pp. Take the case of the opening passage 1.

But it is also true that what the passage does not contain in this case, reference to other central prob- lems of optics at this early period , is, at best, incomplete in the light of what is available through other early sources. Whether al-Farabl is not fully aware Elaheh Kheirandish 56 of the optical problems of his time including problems as central as clarity of vision, on how clear something is seen, rather than how real the nature of its appearance is , or it is the case that he is not referring to these in the context of his intended discussion in this case, distinguishing between the two mathemat- ical sciences of optics and geometry, with the same objects but different func- tions , one may argue that the five passages, marked here 1.

It is the purpose of the present essay to include a dis- cussion of what is not contained in all the respective passages 1. As for maraya, treated by al- Farabl at once as an integral part and separate branch of optics 1. I Veracity and Accuracy of Vision 1. Thus geometrical investigation is more general.

And such things are many. In the selection above, the discussion of the appearance of visible pro- perties other than what they really are, begins with the case of shapes, and the circular appearance of far rectangular objects, a problem that is, by itself, nota- ble for the extensive and diverse explanations it had received beginning with the Greek sources. Al-Kindl d. II Justifiability and Variety of Demonstrations 1. And with regard to all that can be subject to visual error gh-l-t this science explains various devices h-y-l for avoiding error and apprehending what the seen thing truly is in respect to size, shape, position, order, and all that can be mistaken by sight b-s-r.

In specifying demonstrations as distinct forms of explanation with refer- ence to appearances, the present passage well reflects aspects of the field that were central to the early optical tradition. The subjects of demonstrations them- selves were focused more frequently on problems such as clarity or accuracy of vision, than the reality or veracity of appearances. The dominance of the subject of visual accuracy in the Arabic optical tradition may be measured by the abundance of demonstrations that involve quantified treatments of visual clarity in terms of the amount of radiation involved.

Al-Kindl, who treats the subject in more than one place, demon- strates geometrically that what determines the effectiveness of the central region of the visual field is the falling of the greatest amount of radiation on the central region. Examples are: the heights of tall trees and walls and the widths of valleys and rivers; even the heights of mountains and the depths of valleys, provided that sight b-s-r can reach w-q- c their limits; the distances of clouds and other objects from our location and above any place on the earth In general, every visible magnitude of which the size or dis- tance from something else we seek to know, [can be determined] sometimes by means of instruments which are made for guiding the passage of sight b-s-r so that it may not err, and sometimes without such instruments.

In including among the applications of the manazir tradition i. But the absence of the one Euclidean proposition in that set where the deter- mination of a magnitude involves the use of a plane mirror, gives al-Farabl no occasion to move from the discussion of instruments and errors to the more problematic aspects of each case, the mirror and the principle of reflection respectively.

The inclusion of applications such as the determination of unknown heights, depths and lengths from known values through measurements and calculations is indeed close to the common practices of the discipline, both before and after al-Farabl, as is the extension of the objects and distances involved to include natural objects and far distances.

A good example of an early work that com- bined the methods of magnitude determination with principles in optics is a short treatise by Sinan ibn al-Fath ca. The transmission of the Euclidean propositions on height determina- tion by means of reflecting visual rays is a case that had already taken a mis- directed course as a result of the Arabic terminology used for the principle of reflection from a plane mirror.

IV Elements and Mechanisms of Vision 1. Straight rays are those that, having issued kh-r-j from the eye, extend rectilinearly on the line s-m-t of sight b-s-r until they weaken and come to an end. Deflected rays are those that, hav- ing passed out of the eye, meet on their way, and before they weaken, a mirror that precludes them from passing through in a straight line, thereby causing them to be deflected c -t-f and turned h-r-f to one side of the mirror.

They then extend in the direction into which they have turned towards the beholder n-z-r. By containing explanations that clearly represent a combination of the various formulations of visual radiation and their distinct features and functions, the account well reflects the problematic nature of the theoretical aspects of the discipline.

But by excluding some common formula- tions, while including uncommon ones, the detailed account is still a faint reflection of the range and complexity of the problems characterizing the early Arabic optical tradition. This time, what is striking is the absence of any reference to vision through refraction. And when we read in the closing passage that Him al-maraya is the division within Him al-manazir that investigates what is visible through indirect ghavr al-mustaqima rays, this does not include refracted rays as the reference to transparent mediums such as water or glass would have us believe.

V The Modes and Mediums of Operation 1. And mir- rors, which send back the rays and prevent them from rectilinearly passing through, are either those made by us of iron or the like, or they consist of a thick moist vapour, or water, or some other body similar to these. It is divided into two parts, the first of which investigates what is visible n-z-r through rectilinear rays, and the second is visible through non-rectilinear rays, and this [latter] is specially called the science of mirrors Him al-maraya.

The limited knowledge of optical refraction in general and of the treatment of enlarged objects in water in particular has long been noted by A. The important statement of A. The difficulty is that historical evidence may successfully reveal the first the what of transmission , but not all historical evidence would reveal the second its how. But it takes a close examination of the available sources from the perspective of the transmitted terms and expressions, in addition to the sources and concepts, and these through extant manuscripts in addition to published editions, to determine the exact nature and manner of the effect that all of these have had on the state of Arabic optics during a critically important stage in its development.

Appearances are treated, in the opening passage, in terms of problems of veracity to the exclusion of the slightly different, and more com- mon, themes of clarity and accuracy; in the second passage, in terms of dem- onstrations to the exclusion of their sense-perceptible dimensions; in the third passage, in terms of applications to the exclusion of their more problematic extensions; in the fourth passage, in terms of the elements and mechanisms of vision to the exclusion of their multiple variations; and finally in the closing passage, in terms of modes of investigation to the exclusion of all the modes and mediums of operation.

Kheirandish : vol. Hugonnard-Roche, tr. Jolivet, Sinaceur: Rashed ]. The English translation of the full passage is quoted from A. Jamil Ragep and Sally P. Ragep with Steven Livesey, Leiden: Brill, Vesel, H. Beikbaghban et B.

Some aspects of appearances are discussed with reference to the Greek and Latin traditions: appearance versus visual perception, by C. See ed. Amin, pp. For as the fall of the rays is in the form of a cone, when the figure is removed to a distance, those rays that are at the angles are cut off and do not see anything because they are weak and few, when the distance grows greater, but those that fall on the center persist because they are collected together and strong.

The Arabic ver- sion is now available in the edition of L. Heiberg, J. Heiberg et H. Menge, vol. VII, Leipzig: Teubner, , pp. Ill, sec. Sabra, p. Sabra, vol. Daiber and D. Pingree, vol. I, pp. In contrast to other explanations of this visual effect based on the charac- terization of a circle as a figure with no angles, this proof is based on the conception of a circle as a figure having all its points equidistant from a center.

Pellat, p. Adad, p. Elaheh Kheirandish 74 The article is about a shiT scholar and leader associated with the early Abbasid court. David C. Lindberg and Ronald Numbers; vol. May, 2 vols. Aristotle, Kitdb al-Burhdn, ed. Al-FarabI, Kitdb al-Burhan, ed. Fakhry, Beirut: Dar al-Mashriq, For the commentaries, see Peters, F. Brill, , pp. Bjornbo, in A. Bjornbo and S. Jolivet, Fl. Sinaceur, FI. On the commentaries, see Peters, Aristoteles Arabus, pp. Al-Kindi, De aspectibus, ed. Bjornbo, p. De aspectibus, sec.

Bjornbo, pp. Rashed, p. Elaheh Kheirandish 76 On the author, see Kitab al-Fihrist, ed. Fliigel, p. Dodge, p. Fliigel, pp. Dodge, pp. References to sources con- taining the more common Arabic form appear onpp. Sabra, The Optics of Ibn al-Haytham, vol. Edward Grant and John E. Murdoch, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, , pp. Hyderabad, p. So I became puzzled tahayyartu by these rules ahkam. Sabra in this connec- tion: The Optics oflbn ai-Havtham, vol. Page, E. Capps, and W.

Rouse, with an English translation by W. Aristotle, Posterior Analytics, edited by G. Atiyeh, G. Brill, 2 vols. Ill, Brownson, C. Burton, H. Gillispie, 16 vols. Brill, I Endress and R. Kruk, eds. Gonzalez Palencia, Alfarabi Catalogo de las ciencias: two medieval Latin translation, modern edition and Spanish translation, Madrid, Filius, L. Heath, Thomas, L. VII, Leipzig: Teubner, Ibn al-Haytham, Kitdb al-Manazir, ed. See also, Sabra, A. Ibn al-Nadlm, Kitdb al-Fihrist, ed.

Vogel, — ; reprinted, Beirut: Khayyat, Records of Civilization: Sources and Studies no. Khalifat ed. Edited and translated with historical introduction and commentary revised dissertation. Harvard University, , 2 vols. King, David A. Ancient sacral sign of Celts. Alchemy; religion; philosophy; astrology and spirituality. Famous medieval muslim scientist and philosopher. Woman meditation Throughout the medieval period the practical application of astrology was subject to deep philosophical debate Muslim religious scholars Main article: Astrology in medieval Islam as part of a general revival of spiritualism and later, New Age philosophy, and through the influence of Subd Geog BF Communicating with spirits is frowned upon in Islam.

This prohibition extends to other paranormal practices such as fortune-telling, astrology, palm reading, psychics and While Islam forbids spiritualism, the religion has a rich history of spirituality.

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Yoga tantra paths to magical feats ebook torrents Here one might ask why the Arabic West developed forms of the num- erals different from those in the East. We do not in fact have an eyewitness account from the life of Jesus, contrary to what many Christians imagine. It should be added see more in the table of ghubar numerals given by Souissi,the numerals in the first two lines said to date from the 10th century and ca. OTr i. Sinaceur, and H. Ibn al-Haytham, Optics, Preface [6] [A]ll that sight perceives it perceives by refraction. But the different strands, professional and doctrinal, are yet unconnected, even science in medieval islam pdf torrent conflict, different in style and approach, in his vast oeuvre.
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Student of the year full movies downloads kickasstorrents Knorr, Wilbur R. We must bear in mind that the description of the creation examined here is taken from the so-called Sacerdotal version, written by priests and scribes who were the spiritual successors of Ezekiel, the prophet of the exile to Babylon writing in the Sixth century B. Kruk, eds. The period following the deportation is also the period of the Books of Wisdom: Proverbs was written definitively around B. Tabaqat al-umam, ed. And God set them in the firmament of the heavens to give light upon earth, to rule over.
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Robert Briffault wrote in The Making of Humanity :. George Sarton , the father of the history of science , wrote in the Introduction to the History of Science :. Laboratory setup for steam distillation , invented by Avicenna in the 11th century. Geber invented the following chemical processes in the 8th century:. Al-Razi invented the following chemical processes in the 9th century:. Distillation by alembic. The alembic was invented and named by the Muslim chemist Geber.

The still was also invented by Geber as part of the alembic. The chemical retort used for distillation was invented by Geber as part of the alembic , and was widely used by later Muslim scientists. The retort was later introduced to the West by In the 11th century, Avicenna invented the refrigerated coil , which condenses aromatic vapours. Muslim chemists and engineers invented the cucurbit and aludel , and the equipment needed for melting metals such as furnaces and crucibles. In his Secretum secretorum Latinized title , Al-Razi Rhazes described the following tools that were invented by him and his Muslim predecessors Calid , Geber and al-Kindi for melting substances li-tadhwib : hearth kur , bellows minfakh aw ziqq , crucible bawtaqa , the but bar but in Arabic or botus barbatus in Latin , tongs masik aq kalbatan , scissors miqta , hammer mukassir , file mibrad.

Al-Razi also described the following tools that were invented by him and his Muslim predecessors for the preparation of drugs li-tadbir al-aqaqir : cucurbit and still with evacuation tube qar aq anbiq dhu-khatm , receiving matras qabila , blind still without evacuation tube al-anbiq al-ama , aludel al-uthal , goblets qadah , flasks qarura or quwarir , rosewater flasks ma wariyya , cauldron marjal aw tanjir , earthenware pots varnished on the inside with their lids qudur aq tanjir , water bath or sand bath qadr , oven al-tannur in Arabic, athanor in Latin , small cylindirical oven for heating aludel mustawqid , funnels , sieves , filters , etc.

From the list, more than twenty of these chemical apparatus were developed by Geber. The earliest descriptions for these instruments are found in al-Khazini's The Book of the Balance of Wisdom Biruni's contemporary Ibn al-Haytham gave the first clear description [41] and correct analysis [42] of the camera obscura and pinhole camera. Aqua regia was first isolated by Geber. Hydrochloric acid , a mineral acid , was first isolated by Geber. Nitric acid , a mineral acid , was first isolated by Geber.

Sulfuric acid , a mineral acid , was first isolated by Geber. Arsenic , a chemical element , was first isolated by Geber in the 8th century. The only acid known to the ancients was vinegar. Using new equipment such as the alembic and processes such as pure distillation , Muslim chemists were the first to discover and isolate a variety of new acids, such as nitric acid and sulfuric acid.

The important mineral acids —nitric, sulfuric and hydrochloric acids —were all first produced by Geber. These have remained some of the most common products in the chemical industry for over a thousand years. Acetic acid was also first concentrated from vinegar through distillation by Geber in the 8th century. Several chemical elements were first discovered by Geber : arsenic , antimony and bismuth.

Lead and tin were also first purified and clearly differentiated from one another by Arabic alchemists. The isolation of ethanol alcohol as a pure compound was first achieved by Muslim chemists who developed the art of distillation during the Abbasid caliphate , the most notable of whom were Jabir ibn Hayyan Geber , Al-Kindi Alkindus and al-Razi Rhazes.

The writings attributed to Jabir ibn Hayyan mention the flammable vapors of boiled wine. Al-Kindi unambiguously described the distillation of wine. Muslim chemists were the first to produce fully purified distilled alcohol from the 8th century and manufactured them on a large scale from at least the 10th century, for use in medicine and the chemical and pharmaceutical industries, though it was rarely used for drinking due to the Islamic prohibition of alcohol consumption.

Ahmad Y Hassan wrote:. Muslim chemists and physicians discovered and produced at least 2, medicinal substances for use in medicine and the pharmaceutical sciences. Razi also lists ten animal substances that were used by him and his contemporary alchemists: hair , skulls , brains , bile , blood , milk , urine , eggs , nacre mother of pearl and horn. He writes that hair, brains, bile, eggs, skulls and blood were used to prepare sal ammoniac.

Through their experiments with various chemical compounds , Arabic chemists first produced many other chemical substances , including:. Geber was also the first to classify all seven classical metals : gold , silver , tin , lead , mercury , iron and copper. A number of chemical substances and products were developed by Muslim chemists for use in the chemical industries. Tin-glazed Hispano-Moresque ware with lusterware decoration, from Spain circa From the eighth to eighteenth centuries, the use of glazed ceramics was prevalent in Islamic art , usually assuming the form of elaborate pottery.

The first Islamic opaque glazes can be found as blue-painted ware in Basra , dating to around the 8th century. Another significant contribution was the development of stonepaste ceramics , originating from 9th century Iraq. Lustreware was invented in Iraq by the Arabian chemist Jabir ibn Hayyan Geber in the 8th century during the Abbasid caliphate.

The development of this type of pharmacy jar had its roots in the Islamic Middle East. Brought to Italy by Hispano-Moresque traders, the earliest Italian examples were produced in Florence in the 15th century. The Hispano-Moresque style emerged in Andalusia in the 8th century, under the Fatimids. This was a style of Islamic pottery created in Islamic Spain , after the Moors had introduced two ceramic techniques to Europe : glazing with an opaque white tin-glaze , and painting in metallic lusters.

Hispano-Moresque ware was distinguished from the pottery of Christendom by the Islamic character of it decoration. In The Book of the Hidden Pearl , Geber described the first recipes for the manufacture of glue from cheese. An early petroleum industry was established in the 8th century.

From the 8th century the streets of Baghdad were the first to be paved with tar , derived from petroleum through destructive distillation. In the 9th century oil fields were exploited in the area around modern Baku , Azerbaijan , to produce the earliest naphtha. These fields were described by Masudi in the 10th century, and by Marco Polo in the 13th century, who described the output of those oil wells as hundreds of shiploads.

Muslim chemists were the first to produce petrol from crude oil , using the process of distillation. Kerosene was produced from the distillation of petroleum and was first described by al-Razi Rhazes in 9th century Baghdad. In his Kitab al-Asrar Book of Secrets , he described two methods for the production of kerosene. One method involved using clay as an absorbent , while the other method involved using ammonium chloride sal ammoniac. These were used in the oil lamp industry.

Essential oils were first produced by Avicenna in the early 11th century, using steam distillation , for use in aromatherapy and the drinking and perfumery industries. Shale oil and oil distillation were first described in the Islamic world. As a decorative material, oil shale was used during the Umayyad and Abbasid periods to decorate mosaics and floors of the palaces, churches and mosques.

In the 10th century, the Arabian physician Masawaih al-Mardini Mesue the Younger described methods of distillation of empyreumatic oils, including a method of extracting oil from "some kind of bituminous shale," the earliest known description of shale oil extraction.

It was described in his pharmacopoeia, which was translated into Latin as Antidotarium sive Grabadin medicamentorum in Europe, where it was a popular textbook for centuries. Plated mail was invented by Geber in The Book of the Hidden Pearl for use in armours jawasin , helmets bid and shields daraq. Rosewater was first produced by Muslim chemists through the distillation of roses , for use in the drinking and perfumery industries. An Arab named Khalid was tending his goats in the Kaffa region of Ethiopia , when he noticed his animals became livelier after eating a certain berry.

He boiled the berries to make the first coffee. Certainly the first record of the drink is of beans exported from Yemen to Ethiopia where Sufis drank it to stay awake all night to pray on special occasions. By the late 15th century, it had arrived in Makkah and Turkey from where it made its way to Venice in Arab chemists were the first to produce distilled water and purified water , used for water supply systems and for long journeys across deserts where the supplies were uncertain.

Sherbet , the first juiced and carbonated soft drink , made of crushed fruit, herbs, or flowers, has long existed as one of the most popular beverages from and of the Muslim world, winning over Western figures such as Lord Byron. Muslims developed a variety of juices to make their sharab , an Arabic word from which the Italian sorbetto, French sorbet and English sherbet were derived. Today, this juice is known by a multitude of names, is associated with numerous cultural traditions, and is produced by countries ranging from India to the United States of America.

The medieval Muslim sources contain many recipes for drink syrups that can be kept outside the refrigerator for weeks or months. The first industrial complex for glass and pottery production was built in Ar-Raqqah , Syria , in the 8th century. Extensive experimentation was carried out at the complex, which was two kilometres in length, and a variety of innovative high-purity glass were developed there.

Two other similar complexes have also been discovered, and nearly three hundred new chemical recipes for glass are known to have been produced at all three sites. The first glass factories were thus built by Muslim craftsmen in the Islamic world. The first glass factories in Europe were later built in the 11th century by Egyptian craftsmen in Corinth , Greece.

The earliest examples of clear, colourless and high-purity glass were produced by Muslims in the 9th century, such as the quartz glass invented by Abbas Ibn Firnas. The Arab poet al- Buhturi describes the clarity of such glass as follows:.

Coloured stained glass windows in the Nasir al-Mulk mosque in Shiraz , Iran. Stained glass was first produced by Muslim architects in Southwest Asia using coloured glass rather than stone. In the 8th century, the Arab chemist Jabir ibn Hayyan Geber scientifically described 46 original recipes for producing coloured glass in Kitab al-Durra al-Maknuna The Book of the Hidden Pearl , in addition to 12 recipes inserted by al-Marrakishi in a later edition of the book.

In his Kitab al-Durra al-Maknuna The Book of the Hidden Pearl , Jabir described the first recipes for the manufacture of artificial pearls and for the purification of pearls that were discoloured from the sea or from grease. In The Book of the Hidden Pearl , Jabir described the first recipes for the dying and artificial colouring of gemstones and pearls.

The parabolic mirror , earlier studied by Diocles and others, was described by Ibn Sahl in his On the Burning Instruments in the 10th century. Ibn al-Haytham also discussed concave and convex mirrors in both cylindrical and spherical geometries , [71] described spherical and parabolic mirrors, [72] carried out a number of experiments with mirrors, and solved the problem of finding the point on a convex mirror at which a ray coming from one point is reflected to another point.

By the 11th century, clear glass mirrors were being produced in Moorish Spain. Silica glass and Quartz glass , a clear, colourless, high-purity glass, was invented by Abbas Ibn Firnas , who was the first to produce glass from sand and stones such as quartz. Early forms of cosmetics had been used since ancient times, but these were usually created primarily for the purpose of beautification and often used harmful substances.

This changed with Muslim cosmetologists who emphasized hygiene , due to religious requirements, and invented various healthy and hygienic cosmetics that are still used today. In the 9th century, Ziryab is known to have invented an early toothpaste , which he popularized throughout Islamic Spain.

True soaps made from vegetable oils such as olive oil , aromatic oils such as thyme oil and Sodium Lye al-Soda al-Kawia were first produced by Muslim chemists in the medieval Islamic world. Soaps, as we know them today, are descendants of historical Arabian Soaps. Arabian Soap was perfumed and colored, while some of the soaps were liquid and others were solid. They also had special shaving soap for shaving.

It was commercially sold for 3 Dirhams 0. A manuscript of Al-Razi Rhazes contains various modern recipes for soap. A recently discovered manuscript from the 13th century details more recipes for soap making, e. When cooked, they are poured into molds and left to set, leaving hard soap soap bar.

Islamic cultures contributed significantly to the development of perfumery in both perfecting the extraction of fragrances through steam distillation and by introducing new raw ingredients. Both the raw ingredients and distillation technology significantly influenced western perfumery and scientific developments, particularly chemistry.

As traders, Islamic cultures such as the Arabs and Persians had wider access to different spices, herbals, and other fragrance materials. In addition to trading them, many of these exotic materials were cultivated by the Muslims such that they could be successfully grown outside of their native climates. Two examples of this include jasmine, which is native to South and Southeast Asia, and various citrus fruits, which are native to East Asia.

Both of these ingredients are still highly important in modern perfumery. In Islamic culture, perfume usage has been documented as far back as the 7th century and its usage is considered a religious duty. Muhammad said:. Such rituals gave incentives to scholars to search and develop a cheaper way to produce incenses and in mass production. Two talented chemists, Jabir ibn Hayyan born , Iraq , and al-Kindi born , Iraq established the perfume industry. Jabir developed many techniques, including distillation, evaporation and filtration, which enabled the collection of the odour of plants into a vapour that could be collected in the form of water or oil.

His work in the laboratory is reported by a witness who said:. The writer goes on in the same section to speak of the preparation of a perfume called ghaliya , which contained musk, amber and other ingredients, and reveals a long list of technical names of drugs and apparatus. Musk and floral perfumes were brought to Europe in the 11th and 12th centuries from Arabia, through trade with the Islamic world and with the returning Crusaders.

Those who traded for these were most often also involved in trade for spices and dyestuffs. There are records of the Pepperers Guild of London, going back to , which show them trading with Muslims in spices, perfume ingredients and dyes. A picture of a 15th century Andalusian Arab cannon from the book Al-izz wal rifa'a.

The Ottoman Janissary corps were using matchlock muskets since the s. They are depicted battling the Knights Hospitaller in this painting. The bronze Dardanelles cannon , used by the Ottoman Turks in the siege of Constantinople in , was the first supergun. Potassium nitrate saltpetre was known to the Arabs in an early time as it was known to Khalid ibn Yazid Calid d. Recipes for these uses are found in the works of Jabir ibn Hayyan Geber, d. All Editions. Friend Reviews.

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about Science in Medieval Islam , please sign up. Be the first to ask a question about Science in Medieval Islam. Lists with This Book. Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 3. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Jul 09, Nicole rated it liked it Shelves: nonfiction.

Did not have what I was looking for, but it was an adequate introduction to someone looking for more general information. May 28, So Hakim rated it liked it Shelves: history-of-science. An adequate, if nontechnical, introduction to science during the Islamic Golden Age. Last two chapters give poignant reflection on the not-always-easy interaction between the West and Muslim world.

True to its title the book has plenty of photos and plates. I personally feel the pages could have been used to explain technical aspect of Muslim achievement. Some "sciencey" coverage would have added appreciation to this era's achievement: including but not limited to geometry, optics, and planetar An adequate, if nontechnical, introduction to science during the Islamic Golden Age. Some "sciencey" coverage would have added appreciation to this era's achievement: including but not limited to geometry, optics, and planetary models.

Considered as introduction, the book does well, but just that. I should say, though: the book is subjected to academic rigor. Indeed the acknowledgement page looks a bit of who's who in History of Islamic Science: A. Sabra, David A. King, George Saliba among others. The three stars, then, is simply about presentation -- which in my view could have been done more effectively.

Jul 16, Mohamad Ali rated it it was amazing. Lily Grainger rated it it was amazing May 27, Ahmad Abdul Rahim rated it it was amazing Jul 03, Peter Clare rated it it was amazing Dec 02, Stewart rated it really liked it Jun 01, Mary rated it it was amazing Dec 03, Zainab Hasnain rated it really liked it May 08, Kearby rated it liked it Jan 13, John Sorrells rated it liked it May 12, Lia rated it it was amazing Dec 25, Bradley Morris rated it liked it Jan 28, Brandon Teola rated it liked it Apr 23, John A.

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