Encyclopedia of Medieval Philosophy

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al-ʿĀmirī, Abū l-Ḥasan

  • Elvira WakelnigEmail author
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-024-1151-5_30-2


The tenth-century Khurasani philosopher Abū l-Ḥasan Muḥammad b. Yūsuf al-ʿĀmirī was one of the last representatives of the philosophical tradition initiated by al-Kindī. His works show a strong influence of Greek philosophy, for example, the Book on the Afterlife (K. al-Amad ʿalā l-abad) draws heavily on Plato’s Phaedo and the Chapters on Metaphysical Topics (K. al-Fuṣūl al-Maʿālim al-ilāhīya) are, in fact, a paraphrase of parts of the Elements of Theology by the late Neoplatonist Proclus.

About al-ʿĀmirī’s life not much information is preserved. Although he is said to have lived under the patronage of certain rulers at given times, he is also pictured as an itinerant Sufi in one of al-Tawḥīdī’s accounts. At the beginning of his On the Afterlife, al-ʿĀmirī listed the titles of his 17 major works, five of which are known to be extant today. This list provides a good picture of the topics he wrote on, namely, logic, physics, psychology, metaphysics, ethics, biology and medicine, different religions, Sufism, and interpretation of the Qurʾān, as well as of dreams. However, it seems that he was primarily known as a metaphysician.

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Primary Sources

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Near Eastern StudiesUniversity of ViennaViennaAustria