• Albert Z. Iskandar
Reference work entry

Abū Bakr Muḥammad Ibn Zakariyyā al Rāzī (Rhazes), the most original physician philosopher of his time, was born in al‐Rayy (hence the name, al‐Rāzī), now ruins near modern Teheran. Medieval historians wrote more on his copious bibliography than on his life.

Al‐Bīrūnī (d. AD 1048 or 1050) writes in his Risāla fī Fihrist Kutub Muḥammad Ibn Zakariyyā al‐Rāzī (Missive on the Index of Books of Muḥammad Ibn Zakariyyā al‐Rāzī) that he was asked by a learned man to compile a bibliography of al‐Rāzī. To accomplish this task, he examined many manuscripts, and recorded only those works in which he found al‐Rāzī's name mentioned as author in the text. Al‐Bīrūnī's method of research undoubtedly resulted in his failure to record some of al‐Rāzī's genuine works.

Al‐Rāzī advised doctors to practice in densely populated cities, where they could benefit from the experience of many skillful physicians and have the chance to examine many patients. He himself moved from al‐Rayy to Baghdad where, in his...

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  • Albert Z. Iskandar

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