Late Arabic Scientific Commentaries

Their Role and their Originality

By George Saliba
SKU: 101018 Categories: , Date: 2014Language: EnglishEdition: 1ISBN: 9781905122578Format: eBook, PaperbackNo. of Volumes: 1No. of Pages: 58Weight: 0.078kg




The book at hand focuses on the importance of scientific commentaries, especially manuscripts on astronomy, authored between the thirteenth and the sixteenth century. Dr Saliba demonstrates that particular commentaries were distinguished by the introduction of new scientific thinking, and also a level of astronomical mathematical sophistication that outmatched any of the earlier works that were produced within the Islamic civilisation, and, in some instances, even surpassed the contemporary scientific works that were produced in Europe at the time. Dr Saliba attributes the lack of scholarly attention to late scientific commentaries to a number of reasons, most prominently: the difficulty in reading late commentaries, absence of explanatory illustrations, and a perpetuated misconception that following the classical or golden age of Islam, there was nothing worth studying in terms of cultural output.

About the Author(s)

Professor George Saliba

George Saliba is a Professor of Arabic and Islamic Science at Columbia University in the city of New York. He studies the development of scientific ideas from late antiquity till early modern times, with a special focus on the transmission of astronomical and mathematical ideas from the Islamic world to Renaissance Europe. Among his awards is the History of Astronomy Prize from Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Science in 1996, and the History of Science Prize from the Third World Academy of Science in 1993. He has occupied the position of Distinguished Senior Scholar Program (2009-10). His latest works include Islamic Science and the Making of the European Renaissance (MIT Press, 2007, 2011); A History of Arabic Astronomy: Planetary Theories During the Golden Age of Islam (1994); and more than 120 articles in scholarly journals including, “Greek Astronomy and the Medieval Arabic Tradition”, American Scientist, 2002; and more than 200 presentations at academic venues on five continents.


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Weight 0.078 kg
Dimensions 20 × 14 × 2 cm



eBook, Paperback





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By George Saliba



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