• Jacques Sesiano
Reference work entry

Al‐Khwārizmī, Muḥammad ibn Mūsā, is the earliest Islamic mathematician and astronomer of fame, and his works had considerable influence in the medieval world. His name suggests that he was of Persian origin, but his treatises were written in Baghdād during the caliphat of al‐Ma˒mūn (813–833).

The Algebra (possibly al‐Kitāb al‐mukhtaṣar fī ḥisāb al‐jabr wa'l muqābala), al‐Khwārizmī's best known work, consists of four parts of very unequal length. The first part explains the fundamentals of algebra: the resolution of the six basic types of equations of first and second degree (with positive coefficients and at least one positive solution), then basic algebraic reckoning (with expressions involving an unknown or square roots); then, six examples of problems each ending with one of the six equations, and lastly various other problems of the same kind. This structure as well as some characteristic features (no symbolism, numbers written in words, illustrations of algebraic rules by...

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  1. al‐Khwarizmi, Abu Jafar Muhammad ibn Musa, sec. IX. Die älteste lateinische Schrift über das indische Rechnen nach al‐Hwarizmi. Edition, Übersetzung und Kommentar von Menso Folkerts unter Mitarbeit von Paul Kunitzsch. München: Verlag der Bayerischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, 1997.Google Scholar
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  • Jacques Sesiano

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