


AlKhwarizmi
Abu Abdullah Muhammad bin Musa alKhwarizmi (خوارزمی in Persian, أبو عبد الله محمد بن موسى الخوارزمي in Arabic), also spelled Muhammad ibnMusa alKhwarizmi, Muhammad ibnMusa alKhowarizmi, Mohammad Bin Musa AlKhawarizmi, and Abu Ja'Far Muhammad ibnMusa AlKhowarizmi, was a Persian scientist, mathematician, astronomer/astrologer, and author. He was probably born in 780, or around 800; and probably died in 845, or around 840.
He is often cited as "The Father of Algebra".
Introduction
Khwarizmi was born in the town of Khwarizm (now Khiva), in Khorasan province of Persia (now in Uzbekistan). The name alKhwarizmi means the person from Khwarizm. His family moved soon afterward, to a place near Baghdad, where he accomplished most of his work in the period between 813 and 833. There are various guesses at his native languages, including Persian or more probably Khwarezmian (an extinct Iranian language). Like all scientists in the House of Wisdom, AlKhwarizmi wrote his works in Arabic. The historian AlTabari however mentions the word Almajusi when describing him, which gives credit to some claims that he was initially a Zoroastrian.
Mathematical historian Gandz gives this opinion of alKhwarizmi's algebra:
 "AlKhwarizmi's algebra is regarded as the foundation and cornerstone of the sciences. In a sense, alKhwarizmi is more entitled to be called "the father of algebra" than Diophantus because alKhwarizmi is the first to teach algebra in an elementary form and for its own sake, Diophantus is primarily concerned with the theory of numbers." (1)
and Mohammad Kahn, says:
 "In the foremost rank of mathematicians of all time stands AlKhwarizmi. He composed the oldest works on arithmetic and algebra. They were the principal source of mathematical knowledge for centuries to come in the East and the West. The work on arithmetic first introduced the Hindu numbers to Europe, as the very name algorism signifies; and the work on algebra ... gave the name to this important branch of mathematics in the European world..."(2)
Contributions
He made major contributions to the fields of algebra, trigonometry, astronomy/astrology, geography and cartography. His systematic and logical approach to solving linear and quadratic equations gave shape to the discipline of algebra, a word that is derived from the name of his 830 book on the subject, alKitab almukhtasar fi hisab aljabr wa'lmuqabala (حساب الجبر و المقابلة) or: "The Compendious Book on Calculation by Completion and Balancing". The book was first translated into Latin in the 12th century, from which the title and term Algebra derives.
He is also responsible for the use of Arabic numerals in mathematics: In the 12th century a second work by alKhwarizmi introduced HinduArabic numerals and their arithmetic to the West. It is preserved only in a Latin translation, Algoritmi de numero Indorum. From the name of the author, rendered in Latin as algoritmi, originated the term algorithm.
While his major contributions were the result of original research, he also did much to synthesize the existing knowledge in these fields from Greek, Indian, and other sources. He appropriated the placemarker symbol of zero, which originated in India.
AlKhwarizmi systematized and corrected Ptolemy's research in geography and astronomy/astrology, using his own original findings. Another major book was his Kitab surat alard ("The Image of the Earth"; translated as Geography), which presented the coordinates of localities in the known world based, ultimately, on those in the Geography of Ptolemy but with improved values for the length of the Mediterranean Sea and the location of cities in Asia and Africa.
He also assisted in the construction of a world map for the caliph alMa'mun and participated in a project to determine the circumference of the Earth, supervising the work of 70 geographers to create the map of the then "known world".(3)
When his work became known in Europe through Latin translations, his influence made an indelible mark on the development of science in the West: his algebra book introduced that discipline to Europe and became the standard mathematical text at European universities until the 16th century. He also wrote on mechanical devices like the clock, astrolabe, and sundial. His other contributions include tables of trigonometric functions, refinements in the geometric representation of conic sections, and aspects of the calculus of two errors .
Famous works

AlJabr waalMuqabilah from whose title came the name "Algebra"
 Kitab alJam'a walTafreeq bil Hisab alHindi (on Arithmetic, which survived in a Latin translation but was lost in the original Arabic)
 Kitab SuratalArd (on geography)
 Istikhraj Tarikh alYahud (about the Jewish calendar)
 Kitab alTarikh
 Kitab alRukhmat (about sundials)
See also
Sources for writing this article
(1): S Gandz, The sources of alKhwarizmi's algebra, Osiris, i (1936), 26377.
(2): A A al'Daffa, The Muslim contribution to mathematics (London, 1978).
(3): From his biography in Encyclopædia Britannica.
Other sources to use
Books:
 Biography in Dictionary of Scientific Biography (New York 19701990).
 J N Crossley, The emergence of number (Singapore, 1980).
 A F Faizullaev, The scientific heritage of Muhammad alKhwarizmi (Russian) (Tashkent, 1983).
 S Gandz (ed.), The geometry of alKhwarizmi (Berlin, 1932).
 E Grant (ed.), A source book in medieval science (Cambridge, 1974).
 O Neugebauer, The exact sciences in Antiquity (New York, 1969).
 R Rashed, The development of Arabic mathematics : between arithmetic and algebra (London, 1994).
 R Rashed, Entre arithmétique et algèbre: Recherches sur l'histoire des mathématiques arabes (Paris, 1984).
 F Rosen (trs.), Muhammad ibn Musa AlKhwarizmi : Algebra (London, 1831).
Articles:
 K F AbdullaZade, alKhwarizmi and the Baghdad astronomers (Russian), in The great medieval scientist alKhwarizmi (Tashkent, 1985), 178183.
 M Abdullaev, alKhwarizmi and scientific thought in Daghestan (Russian), in The great medieval scientist alKhwarizmi (Tashkent, 1985), 228232.
 A Abdurakhmanov, alKhwarizmi : great mathematician (Russian), in The great medieval scientist alKhwarizmi (Tashkent, 1985), 149151.
 M A Akhadova, The mathematics of India and alKhwarizmi (Russian), in The great medieval scientist alKhwarizmi (Tashkent, 1985), 238240.
 S alKhalidi, alKhwarizmi : scholar of astronomical and mathematical geography (Arabic), in Proceedings of the Seventh Annual Conference on the History of Arabic Science (Arabic) (Aleppo, 1986), 5563.
 A Allard, La diffusion en occident des premières oeuvres latines issues de l'arithmétique perdue d'alKhwarizmi, J. Hist. Arabic Sci. 9 (12) (1991), 101105.
 P G Bulgakov, alBiruni and alKhwarizmi (Russian), in Mathematics and astronomy in the works of scientists of the medieval East (Tashkent, 1977), 117122, 140.
 J N Crossley and A S Henry, Thus spake alKhwarizmi : a translation of the text of Cambridge University Library ms. Ii.vi.5, Historia Math. 17 (2) (1990), 103131.
 Y DoldSamplonius, Developments in the solution to the equation cxÛ + bx = a from alKhwarizmi to Fibonacci, in From deferent to equant (New York, 1987), 7187.
 R Z Du, alKhwarizmi and his algebraic treatise (Chinese), Math. Practice Theory (1) (1987), 7985.
 K Fogel, How alKhwarizmi became known in Germany (Russian), in The great medieval scientist alKhwarizmi (Tashkent, 1985), 8591.
 J P Hogendijk, alKhwarizmi's table of the "sine of the hours" and the underlying sine table, Historia Sci. 42 (1991), 112.
 B B Hughes, Robert of Chester's Latin translation of alKhwarizmi's 'alJabr', Boethius : Texts and Essays on the History of the Exact Sciences XIV (Stuttgart, 1989).
 D K Ibadov, The work of alKhwarizmi in the estimation of Eastern encyclopedic scholars of the 10th  16th centuries (Russian), in The great medieval scientist alKhwarizmi (Tashkent, 1985), 265268.
 W Kaunzner, Über eine frühe lateinische Bearbeitung der Algebra alKhwarizmis in MS Lyell 52 der Bodleian Library Oxford, Arch. Hist. Exact Sci. 32 (1) (1985), 116.
 E S Kennedy, AlKhwarizmi on the Jewish calendar, Scripta Math. 27 (1964), 5559.
 A S Kennedy and W Ukashah, alKhwarizmi's planetary latitude tables, Centaurus 14 (1969), 8696.
 M M Khairullaev, alKhwarizmi and his era (Russian), Voprosy Istor. Estestvoznan. i Tekhn. (3) (1983), 121127.
 P Kunitzsch, alKhwarizmi as a source for the 'Sententie astrolabii', in From deferent to equant (New York, 1987), 227236.
 G P Matvievskaya, The algebraic treatise of alKhwarizmi (Russian), in On the history of medieval Eastern mathematics and astronomy (Tashkent, 1983), 322.
 G P Matvievskaya, History of the study of the scientific work of alKhwarizmi (Russian),, in The great medieval scientist alKhwarizmi (Tashkent, 1985), 7282.
 C A Nallino, Al'Khuwarizimi e il suo rifacimento della Geografia di Tolomeo, Raccolta di scritti editie inediti V (Rome, 1944), 458532.
 K H Parshall, The art of algebra from alKhwarizmi to Viète : a study in the natural selection of ideas, Hist. of Sci. 26 (72, 2) (1988), 129164.
 M A Pathan, AlKhwarizmi, Math. Ed. 6 (2) (1989), 9294.
 D Pingree, alKhwarizmi in Samaria, Arch. Internat. Hist. Sci. 33 (110) (1983), 1521.
 B A Rosenfeld, 'Geometric trigonometry' in treatises of alKhwarizmi, alMahani and ibn alHaytham, in Vestigia mathematica (Amsterdam, 1993), 305308.
 B A Rozenfeld, alKhwarizmi's spherical trigonometry (Russian), Istor.Mat. Issled. 3233 (1990), 325339.
 B A Rozenfeld, Number theory, geometry and astronomy in alKhwarizmi's 'Book of Indian arithmetic' (Russian), in The great medieval scientist alKhwarizmi (Tashkent, 1985), 6672.
 B A Rozenfeld and N D Sergeeva, The astronomical treatises of alKhwarizmi (Russian), Istor.Astronom. Issled. 13 (1977), 201218.
 M M Rozhanskaya, The historicalastronomical value of alKhwarizmi's "zij" (Russian), in The great medieval scientist alKhwarizmi (Tashkent, 1985), 158165.
 A S Sadykov, alKhwarizmi : his era, life and work (Russian), in The great medieval scientist alKhwarizmi (Tashkent, 1985), 813.
 M Sani, The life and work of alKhwarizmi, Menemui Mat. 4 (1) (1982), 19.
 K S Siddikov, Muhammad alKhwarizmi : creator of algebra (Russian), in The great medieval scientist alKhwarizmi (Tashkent, 1985), 152154.
 S Kh Sirazhdinov and G P Matvievskaya, Muhammad ibn Musa alKhwarizmi and his contribution to the history of science (Russian), Voprosy Istor. Estestvoznan. i Tekhn. (1) (1983), 108119.
 Z K Sokolovskaya, The "pretelescopic" period of the history of astronomical instruments. alKhwarizmi in the development of precision instruments in the Near and Middle East (Russian), in The great medieval scientist alKhwarizmi (Tashkent, 1985), 165178.
 B van Dalen, Al'Khwarizmi's astronomical tables revisited : analysis of the equation of time, in From Baghdad to Barcelona (Barcelona, 1996), 195252.
 K Vogel, Wie wurden alKhwarizmi s mathematische Schriften in Deutschland bekannt?, Sudhoffs Arch. 68 (2) (1984), 230234.
 A I Volodarskii, alKhwarizmi and Indian mathematics (Russian), in The great medieval scientist alKhwarizmi (Tashkent, 1985), 232238.
 E Yu Yusupov and M M Kharullaev, The creative legacy of alKhwarizmi and his place in the history of science (Russian), Voprosy Filos. (8) (1983), 140146, 174.
 Kh Zemanek, Manuscripts of alKhwarizmi's works (Russian), in The great medieval scientist alKhwarizmi (Tashkent, 1985), 115121.
 V K Zharov, Instrumental counting in alKhwarizmi's arithmetical treatise (Russian), in The great medieval scientist alKhwarizmi (Tashkent, 1985), 154157.
External links
Last updated: 09122005 02:39:13





