ابوريحان بيرونى Abu Raihan Biruni (also, Al-Biruni, Alberuni Persian: ابوریحان بیرونی ; Arabic: أبو الريحان البيروني ) (September 15 973–December 13 1048) was a Persian mathematician, astronomer, physicist, scholar, encyclopedist, philosopher, astrologer, traveller, historian, pharmacist, and teacher, who contributed greatly to the fields of mathematics, philosophy, medicine, and science.
He was a colleague of the Central Asian philosopher and physician Ibn Sina, the historian, philosopher and ethicist Ibn Miskawayh, in a university and science center established by prince Abu Al Abbas Ma'mun Khawarazmshah. He also travelled to Pakistan and India with Mahmud of Ghazni, who also became his patron, and accompanied him on his campaigns there, learning the language, and studying the religion and philosophy, and wrote Ta'rikh al-Hind ("Chronicles of India"). He also knew the Greek Language, the Sanskrit Language and possibly Syriac and Berber. He wrote his books in Persian and Arabic, but his native language was Khwarezmian.
Some of his notable achievements included:
- At the age of seventeen, he calculated the latitude of Kath, Khwarazm, using the maximum altitude of the sun.
- By th age of twenty-two, he had written several short works, including a study of map projections, "Cartography", which included a methodology for projecting a hemisphere on a plane, .
- By the age of twenty-seven, he had written a book called "Chronology" which referred to other work he had completed (now lost) that included one book about the astrolabe, one about the decimal system, four about astrology, and two about history.
- He calculated the radius of the Earth to be 6,339.6 kilometres (this result was replicated in the Western world in the 16th century).
Biruni's works number more than 120.
His contributions to mathematics include:
- theoretical and practical arithmetic
- summation of series
- combinatorial analysis
- the rule of three
- irrational numbers
- ratio theory
- algebraic definitions
- method of solving algebraic equations
- Archimedes' theorems
- trisection of the angle
His non-mathematical works include:
- Critical study of what India says, whether accepted by reason or refused (Arabic تحقيق ما للهند من مقولة معقولة في العقل أم مرذولة) - a compendium of India's religion and philosophy
- The Remaining Signs of Past Centuries (Arabic الآثار الباقية عن القرون الخالية) - a comparative study of calendars of different cultures and civilizations, interlaced with mathematical, astronomical, and historical information.
- The Mas'udi Canon (Arabic القانون المسعودي) - a book about Astronomy, Geography and Engineering, named after Mas'ud, son of Mahmud of Ghazni, to whom he dedicated
- Understanding Astrology (Arabic التفهيم لصناعة التنجيم) - a question and answer style book about mathematics and astronomy, in Arabic and Persian
- Pharmacy - about drugs and medicines
- Gems (Arabic الجماهر في معرفة الجواهر) about geology, minerals, and gems, dedicated to Mawdud son of Mas'ud
- A historical summary book
- History of Mahmud of Ghazni and his father
- History of Khawarazm
- A biography of Al Biruni
- Extensive biography on Biruni
- Arabic biography of Al Biruni
- Persian biography of Al Biruni
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