No Announcement

"O Allah! We seek goodness from Your Knowledge and with Your Power (and Might) We seek strength, and We ask from You Your Great Blessings, because You have the Power and We do not have the power. You Know everything and I do not know, and You have knowledge of the unseen. Oh Allah! If in Your Knowledge this action (We are about to take) is better for my religion and faith, for our life and end [death], for here [in this world] and the hereafter then make it destined for us and make it easy for us and then add blessings [baraka'] in it, for us. O Allah! In Your Knowledge if this action is bad for us, bad for our religion and faith, for our life and end [death], for here [in this world] and the hereafter then turn it away from us and turn us away from it and whatever is better for us, ordain [destine] that for us and then make us satisfied with it."


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Importance of a good shaykh by Shaykh Abd'al-Qadir al-Jilani Radi Allahu anhu

Al Ghawth al-Adham Shaykh Sayyad Abd'al-Qadir al-Jilani Radi 'Allahu anhu said: You must work hard to ensure that your hearts are not locked out of the door of His nearness. Be sensible! You are getting nowhere. You must seek the company of a Shaykh who is learned in the law [hukm] and knowledge ['ilm] of Allah (Almighty and Glorious is He), and who will show you the way toward Him. Without seeing the successful [muflih], one cannot succeed. If a person does not seek the company of scholars who put their knowledge into practice ['ulama 'ummal], he is a chicken from an egg abandoned by the rooster and the mother hen.

Seek the fellowship of those who enjoy fellowship with the Lord of Truth (Almighty and Glorious is He). What each of you should do, when the night has grown dark and people have gone to bed and their voices are silent, is get up, take an ablution [yatawadda'], perform two cycles of ritual prayer [yusalli rak'atain] and say: "O my Lord, guide me to one of Your righteous servants near to You, so that he may guide me toward You and make me familiar with Your path." The instrument [sabab] is necessary. Allah (Almighty and Glorious is He) was quite capable of guiding [His servants] to Him without the Prophets [anbiya']. Be sensible! You are getting nowhere. You must awaken from your heedless folly. As the Beloved Prophet Salla Allahu ta'ala 'alayhi wa Sallam has said: If someone relies entirely on his own subjective judgement, he will go astray. Try to find someone who will be a mirror for the face of your religion [din], just as you look in the mirror to check the appearance of your outer face, your turban and your hair. Be sensible! What is this crazy foolishness? You say, "I don't need anyone to teach me," and yet the Beloved Prophet Salla Allahu ta'ala 'alayhi wa Sallam has said: The believer is the believer's mirror [al-mu'minu mir'atu 'l-mu'min].

When the believer's faith is sound, he comes to be a mirror for all creatures. They behold their religious faces [wujuh adyanihim] reflected in the mirror of his speech, every time they see him and get close to him. What is this craziness? Not a moment goes by without your begging Allah (Almighty and Glorious is He) to provide you with more than you already have to eat, to drink, and to wear, with more sexual opportunities and more income. These are not things that could increase or decrease, even if you were to be joined in your plea by every supplicant whose prayers are answered [da 'in mujab].

Supplication [da 'wa] will neither increase one's sustenance by so much as an atom, nor reduce it by an atom. This is a foregone conclusion [mafrugh minhu]. You must devote your attention to doing what you have been commanded to do, and to avoiding what you have been forbidden to do. You should not worry about that which is bound to come your way, because He guarantees that it will come to you. Allotted shares [aqsam] arrive at their appointed times, whether they be sweet or bitter, whether you like them or dislike them.

The people [of the Way] attain to a condition in which they no longer have any prayer of supplication [du'a] or request [su'al] to make. They do not beg [in their prayers] to gain advantages, nor to get rid of disadvantages. Their supplication comes to be a matter concerning their hearts, sometimes for their own sake and sometimes for the sake of all creatures, so they utter the prayer of supplication without conscious premeditation [fi ghaiba].
"O '' Allah, endow us with good behaviour in Your company under all circumstances!
[When the believer's faith is sound], fasting [sawm], prayer [salat], remembrance [dhikr] and all acts of obedience [ta 'at] become second nature to him, mingled with his flesh and blood. Then he receives protection from Allah (Almighty and Glorious is He) under all circumstances. The restraint of the law [hukm] does not desert him, not for an instant, while he is on this course. The law comes to be like the vessel in which he sits, as he travels over the ocean of the power [qudra] of his Lord (Almighty and Glorious is He). He goes on traveling over it until he arrives at the shore of the hereafter, at the shore of the ocean of grace and the hand of nearness. Thus he is sometimes in the company of creatures and at certain times in the company of the Creator. His work and toil are with creatures, while his relaxation is with the Creator.
From Shaykh 'Abd al-Qadir al-Jilani, "The Sublime Revelation (Al-Fath ar-Rabbani)," translated by Muhtar Holland (Al-Baz Publishing, Houston, 1992), p. 426-8.
On the authority of Abu Hurayrah r.a., who said that Prophet Muhammad S.A.W. said: Allah SWT said:

Whosoever shows enmity to someone devoted to Me, I shall be at war with him. My servant draws not near to Me with anything more loved by Me than the religious duties I have enjoined upon him, and My servant continues to draw near to Me with supererogatory works so that I shall love him. When I love him I am his hearing with which he hears, his seeing with which he sees, his hand with which he strikes and his foot with which he walks. Were he to ask [something] of Me, I would surely give it to him, and were he to ask Me for refuge, I would surely grant him it. I do not hesitate about anything as much as I hesitate about [seizing] the soul of My faithful servant: he hates death and I hate hurting him. (It was related by al-Bukhari)

“Allah! There is no God save Him, the Alive, the Eternal. Neither slumber nor sleep overtaketh Him. Unto Him belongeth whatsoever is in the heavens and whatsoever is in the earth. Who is he that intercedeth with Him save by His leave? He knoweth that which is in front of them and that which is behind them, while they encompass nothing of His knowledge save what He will. His throne includeth the heavens and the earth, and He is never weary of preserving them. He is the Sublime, the Tremendous.”

Tuesday, May 27, 2008



Based on the book 'Introduction to the History of Science' by George Sarton (provided with photos and portraits) Edited and prepared by Prof. Hamed A. Ead

The Time of Abu-l-Wafa
Second Half of Tenth Century

The period which we have just tried to analyze, and then to reconstruct, was on the whole one of comparative rest. There was no retrogression, but the advance of mankind, which had been so vigorously accelerated during the ninth century through the youthful energy of Islam, was then distinctly slowed up. It is not the first time that we thus witness a momentary quieting down of human activity; on the contrary, we have already had occasion to observe many such periods of fallow. e. g., the first half of the second century B. C., the second half of the fifth, the second half of the sixth, the second half of the seventh, the first half of the eighth. But in each case the slowing up was followed by a new acceleration.

In other words, when we study the creative activity of the mankind as a whole, we find that humanity behaves very much as an individual man would do, that period of unusual achievements are generally followed by depressions, and periods of rest and fallow by new efforts. The intellectual progress of mankind would not be correctly represented by a constantly increasing function, but rather by a sort of sinusoidal curve moving steadily upward. But how do we account for human tiredness, considering that the burden is periodically taken up by new generations? Leaving out of the question political and other external factors which must necessarily influence human energy, we may explain the periodical slowing up in two ways. In the first place, the original flame of enthusiasm, which stimulates intellectual advance, is bound to die out gradually unless new men of genius appear from time to time to keep it alive; of course, there are no means of predicting when and where such men will appear. In the second place, the very progress of knowledge is certain to fill the more conservative minds with a growing anxiety, and finally to determine an orthodox reaction. For example, in the first half of the tenth century an intellectual reaction was led, very successfully, by al-Ash'ari. Man kind does not go forward as a united body; on the contrary, each advance has to be paid a protracted struggle between those who long for more light and those who are afraid of it. The latter are far more numerous than the former, but less intelligent, and thus bound to be beaten in the end, this accounts at once for the sinusoidal advance and its upward tendency, or, in other words, for the slowness, but also for the continuity of human progress.

To come back to the second half of the tenth century, we shall see presently that it was a period of renewed activity in almost every field; the partial fallowness of the first half of the century was thus amply rewarded by more abundant crops and mankind was able to make a few more leaps forward.

Cultural background: Mohammed ibn Ahmed al-Khwarizmi wrote "The Key of the Sciences."

Muslim Mathematics and astronomy: All of the creative work was done in Islam. Muslim mathematicians were so numerous that, for the sake of clarity, I must divide them into three groups - arithmeticians, algebraists, and geometers; astronomers and trigonometricians; astrologers.

Arithmeticians, algebraists, and geometers: It is well to begin this section with a brief account of the progress of the Hindu numerals. By the middle of the tenth century a special form of them, the so called dust (ghubar) numerals, was already used in Muslim Spain. The eastern Arabic form was represented in an Egyptian grafitto, dated 960-61. Mutahhar ibn Taher wrote a number of 10 figures by their means. The earliest Latin example of these numerals is found in a manuscript written in 976 near Logrono, in the Christian part of Spain.

Abu Ja'far al-Khazin wrote commentaries on the tenth book of Euclid and other works and solved al-Mahani's cubic equation. Al-Shaghani investigated the trisection of the angle. Nazif ibn Yumn translated the tenth book of Euclid. The great astronomer Abu-l-Wafa wrote commentaries on Euclid, Diophantos, and al-Khwarizmi, arithmetical and geometrical treatises, and solved a number of geometrical and algebraical problems. Abu-l-Fath improved the Arabic translation of Apollonios's Conics and commented upon the first five books. Al-Kuhi was especially interested in the Archimedian and Apollonian problems leading up to higher equations and discovered some elegant solutions. which he discussed. Al-Sijzi worked along the same lines; he made a special study of the intersections of conics and found a geometrical means of trisecting angles. Al-Khujandi, better known as an astronomer, proved that the sum of two cubic numbers can not be a cubic number. Maslama ibn Ahmed composed a commercial arithmetic and studied an amicable number. (This would confirm that he was acquainted to the writings of the Brethren of Purity, for these were very much interested in the theory of numbers - a natural consequence of their Neoplatonic tendencies.)

Astronomical and trigonometricians: At the very beginning of this period we meet one of the best Muslim astronomers: Abd al-Rahman al-Sufi, who compiled an illustrated catalogue of stars, based upon his own observations. Ibn al-A'lam was also a famous observer and published astronomical tables. Al-Shaghani invented and constructed astronomical instruments. The Buwayhid rulers, especially Sharaf al-dawla, were deeply interested in astronomy; Sharaf built a new observatory in Bagdad. The instruments were probably made by al-Shaghani, and the great mathematician, al-Kuhi, was the leader of the astronomers.

The foremost of the astronomers employed by Sharaf was the Persian Abu-l-Wafa. It is true he was once believed to be; he did not discover the variation of the moon, but he continued in a masterly way the elaboration of trigonometry. Taken all in all, the fame of Abu-l-Wafa is more solidly based upon his mathematical than upon his astronomical contributions, but I placed him here because, in those days, trigonometry was considered a branch of astronomy.

Al-Khujandi made astronomical observations in Ray. Abu Nasr improved the Arabic text of Menelaos's Spherics and dealt with trigonometrical subjects. Maslama ibn Ahmed edited and revised al-Khwarizmi's astronomical tables, and wrote a commentary on Ptolemy's Planisphere.

Astrologers: The main astrologers were al-Qabisi in Syria and Rabi ibn Zaid in Spain; the latter was a Christian, Bishop of Cordova under al-Hakam II.

Muslim Alchemy and Technology

The earliest scientific treatise in modern Persian (hitherto the Muslim Persians had written in Arabic) happens to be one of the most chemical works written by a Muslim until that time. It is really a treatise on materia medica, but it contains abundant information upon the preparation and properties of mineral substances. It is obvious that its author; Abu Mansour Muwaffak, was unusually stepped in chemistry. More may be learned about the chemical knowledge of those days, in the Eastern Caliphate, in the encyclopaedic works dealt with in Section III.

As to the Muslim West, the medical treatise of Abu-l-Qasim contains also various items of chemical interest; it explains the preparation of drugs by sublimation and distillation. two important alchemic writings have been ascribed to Maslama ibn Ahmed, but they are possibly a little later.

Muslim Medicine

The subtitle of this section is a little misleading, for the many adjectives tend to be the fact that everything was done by the Muslims alone.

Muslim physicians were so numerous that it is necessary to divide them into groups, and the most expedient division is, this time, a regional one. Thus I shall deal successively with the physician who flourished in the Eastern Caliphate (reserving a separate place for one of them who wrote in Persian), in Egypt, in Spain, and in North Africa.

The first group is the most numerous, as we would expect it. Ahmed al-Tabari wrote a medical treatise called Hippocratic treatments. Ali ibn Abbas (Hally Abbas), who flourished a little later, was one of the greatest physicians of Islam. He compiled a medical encyclopedia, "The Royal Book", which was very valuable but superseded by Avicenna's Qanun. It contains a number of original observations, under the patronage of Adud-al-Dawla, a new hospital was established in Bagdad in 979. Al-Husain ibn Ibrahim improved the Arabic text of Dioscorides. Abu Sahl al-Masihi, who was, as his name indicates, a Christian, wrote a number of medical treatises. He shares with al-Qumri the fame of having been one of the teacher of Avicenna, the prince of mediaeval physicians. It is even possible that one of Abu Sahl's treatises gave Avicenna the first idea of composing his Qanun.

Note that all of those were Persians, but all wrote, as far as we know, in Arabic. Another Persian, Abu Masour Muwaffak, had the idea of compiling a great medical treatise in Persian. That treatise dealt with materia medica and contains a general outline of pharmacological theory. Its intrinsic value is great, but it has also a considerable extrinsic importance, because it is the oldest prose work in modern Persian.

Two distinguished physicians of that time flourished in Egypt, al-Tamimi and al-Baladi. The former is chiefly known because of his medical guide (Murshid), the latter wrote a treatise on the hygiene of pregnancy and infancy.

Medical activity in Muslim Spain, was almost of the same level as that which obtained in the Eastern Caliphate; in some respects it was even superior. One of the most distinguished of the Spanish physicians, however, was not a Muslim, but a Jew, the great Hasdia ibn Shaprut. He translated Dioscorides into Arabic with the aid of the Greek monk Nicholas. Arib ibn Sa'd wrote a treatise on gynecology, obstetrics, and pediatrics. Abu-lQasim (Abulcasis) was the greatest Muslim surgeon; he exerted a very deep influence upon he development of the European surgery down to the Renaissance. Ibn Juljul wrote a commentary on Dioscorides and added a supplement to it, and he compiled a history of the Hispano-Muslim physicians of his time.

The last Muslim country to be considered, Tunis, nutured also a great physician, Ibn al-Jazzar (Algizar), author of a medical vade-mecum which obtained considerable success throughout the Middle Ages.

Muslim Mathematics and Astronomy


Mutahhar ibn Tahir al-Maqdisi (or al-Muqaddasi), i. e., the native or inhabitant of the Holy City. From Jerusalem, flourished in Bust, Sijistan, c. 966. Encylcopaedist. Author of the book of the Creation and of History (Kitab al-bad'wal-tarikh), a summary of the knowledge of his day based not simply on Muslim, but also on Iranian and jewish sources. He quoted as a curiosity a very large number, 4,320,000,000 (representing the duration of the world in years according to the Hindus), in Hindu or Devanagari numerals.

Cl. Haurt: Leveritable auteur du Libre de la creation et de lhistoire (Journal Asiatique (9), vol. 18, 16-21, 1901. Concludind that Mutahhar was the author); Arabic literature (284, 291, London, 1903).


Alkhazin means the treasurer or the librarian. Born in Khurasan, died between 961 and 971. Mathematician, astronomer. Author of a commentary on the Tenth book of Euclid and of other mathematical and astronomical writings. He solved by means of conic sections the cubic equation which had baffled al-Mahani's efforts, the so-called al-Mahani's equation (q. v., second half of the ninth century.)

Fihrist (p. 266, 282); Suter's translation (p. 17, 39).


Nazif ibn Yumn (or Yaman?) al-Qass means the priest (particularly, the Christian priest). Flourished under the Buwayhid sultan Adud al-dawla; died c. 990.

Mathematician and translator from Greek into Arabic. He thus translated the Tenth book of Euclid.

H. Suter: Mathematiker (68, 1900).


Abu-l-Fath Mahmud ibn Mohammed ibn Qasim ibn Fadl al-Isfahani. From Ispahan, flourished probably c. 982. Persian mathematician. He gave a better Arabic edition of the Conics of Apollonios and commented on the first books.

The Conics had been translated a century before by Hilal al-Himsi (books 1-4) and Thabit ibn Qurra (books 5-7) (see second half of ninth century).

H. Suter: Die Mathematiker und Astronomen der Araber (98, 1900).


Abu Sahl Wijan (or Waijan) ibn Rustam al-Kuhi. Of Kuh, Tabaristan, flourished in Bagdad c. 988. Mathematician, astronomer. Many mathematical and astronomical writings are ascribed to him. He was the leader of the astronomers working in 988 at the observatory built of the Buwayhid Sharaf al-dawla. He devoted his attention to those Archimedian and Apollonian problems leading to equations of a higher degree than the second; He solved some of them and discussed the conditions of solvability. These investigations are among the best of Muslim geometry.

M. Steinschnieder: Lettere intorno ad Alcuhi a D. Bald. Boncompagni (Roma, 1863). Suter: Die Mathematiker und Astronomen der Araber (75-76, 1900).


Abu Sa'id Ahmed ibn Mohammed ibn Abd al-Jalil al-Sijzi (short for al-Sijistani). Lived from c. 951 to c. 1024. Mathematician who made a special study of the intersections of conic sections and circles. He replaced the old kinematical trisection of an angle by a purely geometric solution (intersection of a circle and an equilateral hyperbola.)

Suter: Die Mathematiker und Astronomen der Araber (80-81, 224, 1900).


Abu-l-Husan Abd al-Rahman ibn Omar al-Fufi al-Razi. Born in Ray 903, died 986. One of the greatest Muslim astronomers. Friend and teacher of the Buwayhid sultan Adud al-dawla. His main work is the "Book of the Fixed Stars" illustrated with figures "Kitab al-kawakib al-thabita al-musawwar", one of the three masterpieces of Muslim observational astronomy (the two others being due to Ibn Yunus, first half of the eleventh century, and Ulugh Beg, first half of the fifteenth century).

Fihrist (284). Suter: Die Mathematiker und Astronomen der Araber (62, 1900).


Abu-l-Qasim Ali ibn al-Husain al-Alawi, al-Sharif al-Hisaini. Flourished at the Buwayhid court under Adud al-dawla (q. v.,); died at Bagdad in 985. Muslim astronomer. The accuracy of his observations was praised; he compiled astronomical tables which obtained much favor during at least two centuries.

H. Suter: Die Mathematiker der Araber (62, 1900).


Abu Hamid Ahmed ibn Mohammed al-Saghani al-Asturlabi, i. e., the astrolabe maker of Saghan, near Merv, flourished in Bagdad, died 990. Mathematician, astronomer, inventor and maker of instruments. He worked in Sharaf al-dawla's observatory and, perhaps, constructed the instruments which were used there. Trisection of the angle.

Suter: Die Mathematiker und Astronomen der Araber (p. 65, 1900).


Abu-l-Wafa Mohammed ibn Mohammed ibn Yahya ibn Isma'il ibn al-Abbas al-Buzjani. Born in Buzjan, Quhistan, in 940, flourished in Bagdad, where he died at 997 or 998. Astronomer and one of the greatest Muslim mathematicians. One of the last Arabic translators and commentators of Greek works. He wrote commentaries on Euclid, Diophantos, and al-Khwarizimi (all lost); astronomical tables (zij al-wadih) of which we have possibly a later adaptation; a practical arithmetic; "the complete book" (Kitab al-kamil), probably a simplified version of the Almagest. The book of applied geometry (Kitab al handasa) is probably in its present form, the work of a disciple.
His astronomical knowledge was hardly superior to Ptolemy's. He did not discover the variation, the third inequality of the moon. He simply spoke of the second eviction, the Ptolematic, essentially different from the variation discovered by Tycho Brahe.
Solution of the geometrical problems with one opening of the compass. Construction of a square equivalent to other squares. Regular polyhedra (based on Pappos).

Approximative construction of regular heptagon (taking for its side half the side of the equilateral triangle inscribed in the same circle). Constructions of parabola by points. Geometrical solution of

x4 = a and x4 + ax4 = b.

Abu-l-Wafa contributed considerably to the development of trigonometry. He was probably the first to show the generality of the sine theorem relative to spherical triangles. He gave a new method for constructing sine tables, the value of sin 30` being correct to the eighth decimal place. He knew relations equivalent to ours for sin (a + b) (though in an awkward form) and to

2sin2a/2 = 1 - cos a sin a = 2 sin a/2 cos a/2.

He made a special study of the tangent; calculated a table of tangents; introduced the secant and cosecant; knew those simple relations between the sic trigonometric lines, which are now often used to define them.

Fihrist (I, 266, 283, Suter's translation, p. 39).


Abu Muhamid Hamid ibn al-Khidr al-Khujandi. Of Khujanda, on the jax artes, or Sir Daria, Transoxania, died c. 1000. Astronomer, mathematicain. He made astronomical observations, including a determination of the obliquity of the ecliptic, in Ray in 994. He proved (impefectly) that the sum of two cubic numbers cannot be a cubic number> He may be the discoverer of the sine theorem relative to spherical triangles.
Suter : Die Mathematiker und Astronomen der Araber (74, 213, 1900).


Abu Nasr Mansur ibn Ali ibn Iraq. Teacher of al-Bairuni; still active in 1007. Muslim mathematician and astronomer; one of three to whom the discovery of the sine theorem relative to spherical triangles is ascribed. He gave in 1007-8 an improved edition of Menelaos's Spherica. Various other writings on trigonometry are ascribed to him.
H. Suter : Die Mathematiker und Astronomen der Araber (81, 255, Leipzig, 1900).


Abu-l-Qasim Maslam ibn Ahmed al-Majriti. Of Madrid, flourished in Cordova, died in or before 1007. Astronomer, mathematician, occulist. The earliest Hispano-Muslim scientist of any importance. He edited and corrected the astronomical tables of al-Khwarizmi, replacing the Persian by the Arabic chronology. He wrote a treatise on the astrolabe (translated into Latin by Joan. Hispalensis); a commentary on Ptolemy's Planisphaerium translated by Rudolph of Bruges (q. v., first half of twelfth century); a commercial arithmetic (al-mu'amalat); a book on the generation of animals (?). He may have introduced into Spain the writings of the Prethren Purity, or else this was done later by one of his disciples, al-Karmani. He spoke of the erotic power of amicable numbers (220, 284). Two alchemic writings, the "Sage's step" (Rutbat al-hakim) and the "Aim of the Wise", (Ghayat al-hakim), are ascribed to him. The second is well known in the Latin translation made in 1252 by order of King Alfonso under the title Picatrix; the original Arabic text dates probably from the middle of the eleventh century.

Ibn Khaldun: Prolegmenes. F. Wustenfeld: Geschichte der arabischen Aerzte (61, 1840).


Abu-l-Saqr Abd al-Aziz ibn Uthman ibn Ali al-Qabisi. Pupil of al-Imrani (q. v. , first half of tenth century) in Mosul; after the latter's death in 955-56 he was patronized by the Hamdanid sultan Sayf al-dawla, who died in 966-67. Famous Muslim astrologer. His main writings are his introduction to the art of astrology (al-madkhal ila sina'at (ahkam) al-nujum) and treatise on the conjunctions of planets; both were translated into Latin by Joannes Hispalensis (first half of twelfth century). He, or his patron Sayf al-dawla, wrote a poem on the rainbow.

H. Suter : Die Mathematiker und Astronomen der Araber (60, 1900; Nachtrag, 165, 1902).


Rabi ibn Zaid al-Usquf. Meaning the bishop (from the Greek). He was Bishop of Cordova and Elvira under al-Hakam II. Flourished at Cordova c. 961. Spanish Christian writing n Arabic. He coposed various astronological treatises and dedicated to Hakam II a calendar (Kitab al-anwa', liber anoe) entitled "The Division of times and the Good of bodies."

Suter : Mathematiker (96, 212, 1900).

Muslim Medicine


Abu-l-Hasan Ahmed ibn Mohammed al-Tabari. Of Tabaristan; was physician to the Buwwayhid Rukn al-dawla, c. 970. Persian Physician. Author of compendium of medicine, called Hippocratic treatments, in ten books. Was it written in Persian or in Arabic? It is extant only in Arabic, Kitab al-mu'alaja al-buqratiya.

F. Wustenfeld: Arabschen Aerzte (56, 1840).


Ali ibn Abbas al-Majusi, that is, the Magian, which means that he, or his father was of the Zoroastrian faith. Latin name: Ali Abbas or Hall Abbas. Born in Ahwaz, southwestern Persia; flourished under thw Buwayhid Adud al-dawla; died in 994. One of the three greatest physicians of the Eastern Caliphate. He wrote for Adud aldawla a medical encyclopedia called "the Royal Book" (Kitab al-Maliki, Liber regius, regalis dispositio; also called Kamil al-sana 'a al-tibbiya), which is more systematic and consice than Razi's Hawi, but more practical than Avicenna'a Qanun, by which it was superseded. The Maliki is divided into 20 discourses, of which the first half deal with theory and the other with the practice of medicine. the best parts of it are those devoted to dietetics and to materia medica. Rudimentary conception of the capillary system. Interesting clinical observations. Proof of the motions of the womb during parturition (the child does not come out; it is pushed out).

Wustenfeld: Geschichte der arabischen Aerzte (59, 1840).


Al Husain ibn Ibrahim ibn al-Hasan ibn Khurshid al-Tabari al-Natili. Flourished c. 900-91. Translator from Greek into Arabic. He dedicated, in 990-91, an improved translation of Dioscorides to the Prince Abu Ali al-Samjuri.

C. Brockelmann: Arabische Litteratur (189, 207).


Abu Masur al-Hasan ibn Nuh al-Qumri. From Qum in Jibal. Flourished probably at Bagdad, about the end of the tenth century, and the begining of the eleventh. Muslim Physician. Teacher of Avicenna. He wrote a treatise on medicine, largely based upon al-Razi, called the book of life and death (Kitab Ghina wa mana'), divided into three parts (internal diseases, external diseases, fevers).

C. Brockelmann: Arabische Litteratur (vol. 1, 239, 1808).


Abu Sahl Isa ibn Yahya al-Masihi al-Jurjani, i. e., the Christian, from Jurjan, east of the Caspian Sea; died at the age of fourty in 999-1000. Christian physician writing in Arabic. Teacher of Avicenna. He wrote an encyclopaedic treatise on medicine in a hundred chapters (al-Kutub al-mi'a fi-l-sana'a al-tibbiya), which is one of the earliest Arabic works of its kind and may have been in some respects the model of the Qanun. He wrote a various smaller treatises: on measles, on the plague, on the pulse, demonstration of God's wisdom as evidenced in the creation of man, etc.

C. Brockelmann: Arabische Litteratur (vol. 1, 138, 1898).


Abu Mansur Muwaffak ibn Ali al-Harawi. Flourished in Herat under the Samanid prince Mansur I ibn Nuh, who ruled from 961 to 976. Persian pharmacologist. He was apparently the first to think of compiling a treatise on materia medica in Persian; he travelled extensively in Persia and India to obtain necessary information. He wrote between 968 and 977, the "Book of the Remedies" (Kitab al-abnyia 'an Haqa'iq al-adwiya), which is the oldest pose work in modern Persian. It deals with 585 remedies (of which 466 are derived from plants, 75 from minerals, 44 from animals), classified into four groups according to their action. Outline of a general pharmacological theory. Abu mansur distinguished between sodium carbonate (natrun) and potassium carbonate (qli); he had some knowledge abot arsenious oxide, cupric oxide, silicic acid, antimony; he knew the toxilogical effects of copper and lead compounds, the depilatory vertue of quicklime, the composition of plaster of Paris and its surgical use.

E. G. Browne: Arabian Medicine (92, Cambridge, 1921).


Abu Abdallah Muhammed ibn Ahmed ibn Sa'id al-Tamimi al-Muqaddasi (meaning, the native or the inhabitant of the Holly City). Born in Jerusalen; he moved, c. 970, to Egypt and was still living there in 980. Palastinian physician. He made pharmaceutical experiments and wrote various medical works, chiefly on materia medica. His main work is a guide (Murshid) on materia medica, which contains valuable information on plants, minerals, etc. Kitab al-murshid ila jawahir al-aghdhiya wa quwa-lmufradat; guide toward (the understanding of) the substances of food-stuffs and (of) the simple drugs.

C. Brockelmann: Arabische Litteratur (vol. 1, 237, 1898).


Ahmed ibn Mohammed ibn Yahya al-Baladi. Flourished in Egypt under the Wazir Ya'qub ibn Kils, who died in 990-91. Egyptian physician. Author of a treatise on the hygiene of pregnant women and the babies (Kitab Tadbir al-habala wal-atfal).

C. Brockelmann: Arabische Litteratur (vol. 1, 237, 1898).


Alias shaprut, Shafrut, Bashrut, Shaprot. Abu Yusuf Isaac ibn Izra. Born c. 915 at Jaen, Andalus; flourished at Cordova at the court of Abd al-Rahman III; died in 970 or 990 at Cordova. Hispano-Jewish physician, translator of Greek into Arabic, Patron of science. Physician to the caliph. He discovered a panacea called al-faruq (the best).

A manuscript of Dioscorides having been presented in 948-49 to Abd al-Rahman III by the emperor Constantinos VII, Hasdai undertook to translate it with the assistance of the Greek monk Nicholas. This monk had been sent to Cordova by the emperor upon the caliph's request, in 951.

He wrote a Hebrew letter to the King of the Khazars discribing Andalus. He was a great patron of jewish science and it was partly due to his initiative and activity that the intellectual center of Israel was finally transfered from academies of Babylonia to Spain.

Article by Rabbi Meyer Kayserling in Jewish encyclopaedia, vol. 6, 248, 1904.


Arib ibn Sa'd al-Khatib (the secretary) al-Qurtubi. Flourished at Cordova at the court of Abd al-Rahman IIi and al-Hakim II, who died in 976. Hispano-Mislim historian and physician. Originally Christian. He wrote a chronicle of Muslim Spain and Afric some time between 961-976. This chronicle was extensively used by Ibn al-Idhari (q. v., second half of thirteenth century). He wrote also a treatise on gynaecology, hygiene of pregnant women and infants, and on obstetric (Khalq al-janin, Creation of the embryo, in 964-65), and a calender (Kitab al-anwa').

C. Brockelmann: Arabische Litteratur (vol. 1, 236, 1898).


Latin names: Abulcasis, Albucasis, Alsaharavius. Khalaf ibn Abbas al-Zahrawi, from Zahra, near Cordova, where he flourished and died c. 1013. The greatest Muslim surgeon. Physician to al-Hakam II (961 to 976). His great medical encyclopedia in 30 sections, al-Tasrif (Vade-mecum) contains interesting methods of preparing drugs by sublimation and distillation. but its most important part is the surgical, in three books, largely based upon Paulos Aegineta. Great importance attached to cauterization and styptics. Parts of the surgery are devoted to obstetrics and to the surgical treatment of the eyes, ears, and teeth. This work was illustrated with views of the surgical instruments. It was early translated into Latin (by Gherardo Cremonese), Provencal and Hebrew. Muslim prejudices against surgery stifled Abu-l-Qasim's fame in Islam, but in the Christian world his prestigue was soon immense.

Wustenfled: Geschichte der Arabischen Aerschen (p. 85, 1840).


Abu Da'ud Suliman ibn Hasan ibn Juljul. Physician to the Spanish Umayyad Hisham II, Mu'aiyad billah, caliph from 976 to 1009. Hispano-Muslim physician. He wrote, at Cordova, in 982, a commentary on Dioscorides, and later a supplement to it, and a history of the physicians and philosophers of his time in Spain (Ta'rikh al-atibba wal-falasifa), often quoted by Ibn abi Usaibi'a (q. v., first half of the thirteenth century).

The aim of the commentary was to determine the drugs dealt with by Dioscorides; the supplement was a list of drugs not mentioned by Dioscorides. As to the origin of these Dioscoridian studies, see my notes on Hasidai ibn Shaprut. It would seem that Ibn Juljul and others assisted in the translation of Dioscorides into Arabic.

C. Brockelmann: Arabische Litteratur (t. 1, 237, 1898).


In Latin: Algizar, AlJazirah. Abu Ja'far Ahmed ibn Ibrahim Ibn Abi Khalid Ibn alJazzar. Flourished in Qairawan, Tunis, died in 1009, being more than 80 years old. Physician. Pupil of Ishaq al-Isra'ili (q. v., first half of the tenth century). Of his many writings, the most important because of its enormous popularity, was his "Traveller's Provision" (Zad al-Musafir) which was translated into Latin by Constantinus Africanus, into Greek by Synesios, and into Hebrew - the titles of these translations being: Viaticum pergrinantis; Zedat al-Derachim. It contains remarkable descriptions of smallpox and measles. He wrote also on the coryza, on the cuases of plague in Egypt, etc.

C. Brockelmann: Arabische Litteratur (vol. 1, 238, 1898).