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Kūshyār ibn Labbān al-Jīlī
Ptolemaic Tradition and Islamic Innovation: the Astronomical Tables of Kūshyār ibn Labbān

B. van Dalen (ed.)
approx. XX+600 p., 8 b/w ill. + 16 colour ill. + 159 pages of tables, 15 b/w tables, 178 x 254 mm, 2021
ISBN: 978-2-503-59341-8
Languages: English, Arabic
HardbackHardback
The publication is in production.The publication is in production. (12/2021)
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This book provides a critical edition of the mathematical tables in the popular Arabic astronomical handbook of the Iranian astronomer Kūshyār ibn Labbān (c. 1000).
The Jāmiʿ Zīj (Comprehensive Zīj) was a highly popular Arabic astronomical handbook with tables written by the Iranian astronomer Kūshyār ibn Labbān al-Jīlī around the year 1000. It belonged to an important category of works, modelled after Ptolemy’s Almagest and Handy Tables, that allowed the practising astronomer/astrologer to carry out all necessary calculations of arcs on the heavenly sphere and planetary positions, and ultimately to cast horoscopes. Around one hundred such works are extant, but only very few have been edited, translated or studied in detail.
This book contains a full treatment of Book II of Kūshyār’s astronomical handbook centred around a critical edition of all the mathematical tables and their paratexts. It sets new standards for the edition of such tables by designing new types of apparatus entries for related variants in the tabular values. The introductory part describes the eight surviving manuscripts that transmit Kūshyār’s tables and establishes by a detailed survey that they represent at least three different versions of the Jāmiʿ Zīj that in all likelihood stem from Kūshyār himself. An extensive commentary with mathematical analyses uncovers numerous new details of the methods by which the tables were computed, the astronomical parameter values on which they were based, the sources for the tables, and their influence on later zījes. These results show how Kūshyār, on the one hand, stayed firmly within the framework of the Ptolemaic tradition, but on the other introduced several types of innovations that later became common in Arabic and Persian astronomical handbooks.

Benno van Dalen is one of the leading historians of Islamic astronomy and its transmission to China, India and Europe. He has published extensively on Arabic and Persian astronomical tables and their mathematical analysis. Van Dalen received his PhD from the University of Utrecht in 1993 and worked for more than ten years at the Institute for the History of Science in Frankfurt am Main. Since 2013 he has been one of the two research leaders of the project Ptolemaeus Arabus et Latinus at the Bayerische Akademie der Wissenschaften in Munich.

Table of Contents

Preface
Part I: Introduction
Part II: Tables
Part III: Texts
Part IV: Commentary
Quick references: zījes and technical concepts for the analysis of tables
Indexes
Bibliography

Series Branch:
Ptolemaeus Arabus et Latinus
Ptolemaeus Arabus et Latinus - Texts
Interest Classification:
Philosophy
Scholastic Philosophy (c. 1200-1500)
Classics, Ancient History, Oriental Studies
Non Indo-European langs & lits
Semitic langs & lits
Sciences & Technology
Science
History of Science
Medieval & Renaissance History (c.400-1500)
Medieval European history (400-1500) : main subdisciplines
Cultural & intellectual history

This publication is also distributed by: ISD
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