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# Samauʼal Al-Maghribī

Ibn Yaḥyā al-Maghribī al-Samawʾal (Arabic: السموأل بن يحيى المغربي; c. 1130 – c. 1180) commonly known as Samau'al al-Maghribi was a Muslim mathematician, astronomer and physician of Jewish descent.[1] Though born to a Jewish family, he converted to Islam in 1163 after he had a dream telling him to do so.[2] His father was a Jewish Rabbi from Morocco.[3]

Mathematics

Al-Samaw'al wrote the mathematical treatise al-Bahir fi'l-jabr, meaning "The brilliant in algebra", at the age of nineteen.

He also used the two basic concepts of mathematical induction, though without stating them explicitly. He used this to extend results for the binomial theorem up to n=12 and Pascal's triangle previously given by al-Karaji.[4]

Polemics

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al-Samaw'al

He also wrote a famous polemic book in Arabic debating Judaism known as Ifḥām al-Yahūd (Confutation of the Jews) or in Spanish Epistola Samuelis Maroccani and later known in English as The blessed Jew of Morocco.[5][6]

Notes

^ Jewish Encyclopedia

^ [1]

^ Medieval Cultures in Contact, By Richard Gyug, pg. 123

^ Katz (1992), p. 242:

"Like the proofs of al-Karaji and ibn al-Haytham, al-Samaw'al's argument contains the two basic components of an inductive proof. He begins with a value for which the result is known, here n = 2, and then uses the result for a given integer to derive the result for the next. Since al-Samaw'al did not have any way of stating the general binomial theorem, however, he cannot be said to have proved it, by induction or otherwise. What he had done was provide a method acceptable to his readers for expanding binomials up to the twelfth power..."

^ Samau'al al-Maghribi Ifham Al-Yahud: Silencing the Jews / placeholder for Arabic language transliteration, by Moshe Perlmann

^ Samau'al al-Maghribi: Ifham Al-Yahud: Silencing the Jews / placeholder for Arabic language transliteration by Moshe Perlmann, Proceedings of the American Academy for Jewish Research, Vol. 32, Samau'al Al-Maghribi Ifham Al-Yahud: Silencing the Jews (1964)

References

Anbouba, Adel (1970). "Al-Samaw’al, Ibn Yaḥyā Al-Maghribī". Dictionary of Scientific Biography. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons. ISBN 0684101149.

O'Connor, John J.; Robertson, Edmund F., "Ibn Yahya al-Maghribi Al-Samawal", MacTutor History of Mathematics archive, University of St Andrews.

Samau'al al-Maghribi: Ifham Al-Yahud: Silencing the Jews / placeholder for Arabic language transliteration by Moshe Perlmann, Proceedings of the American Academy for Jewish Research, Vol. 32, Samau'al Al-Maghribi Ifham Al-Yahud: Silencing the Jews (1964)

Samaw'al al-Maghribi: Ifham al-yahud, The early recension, by مغربي، السموءل بن يحي، d. ca. 1174. al-Samawʼal ibn Yaḥyá Maghribī; Ibrahim Marazka; Reza Pourjavady; Sabine Schmidtke Publisher: Wiesbaden : Harrassowitz, 2006.OCLC: 63514265

Perlmann, Moshe, "Eleventh-Century Andalusian Authors on the Jews of Granada" Proceedings of the American Academy for Jewish Research 18 (1948–49):269-90.

External links

Al-Bahir en Algebre d'As-Samaw'al translation by Salah Ahmad, Roshdi Rashed, Author(s) of Review: David A. King, Isis, Vol. 67, No. 2 (Jun., 1976), pp. 307-308

Al-Asturlabi and as-Samaw'al on Scientific Progress, Osiris, Vol. 9, 1950 (1950), by Franz Rosenthal, pp. 555-566

Arab Mathematics

Naderi, Negar (2007). "Samawʾal: Abū Naṣr Samawʾal ibn Yaḥyā ibn ’Abbās al‐Maghribī al‐Andalusī". In Thomas Hockey et al. The Biographical Encyclopedia of Astronomers. New York: Springer. p. 1009. ISBN 9780387310220. (PDF version)

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