Dīnawarī, ad-

Dīnawarī, ad-

▪ Persian astronomer and botanist
, in full Abū Ḥanīfah Aḥmad Ibn Dāʾūd Al-dīnawarī
born c. 815
died c. 895, /902

      Persian astronomer, botanist, and historian, whose interest in Hellenism and the Arabic humanities has been compared with that of the Iraqi scholar al-Jaḥiẓ.

      Ad-Dīnawarī studied philology in the Iraqi cities of Basra and Kūfah. The systematic approach to learning that he acquired there is reflected in the preserved fragments of his Kitāb an-nabāt (“Book of Plants”), one of the most famous early Muslim works on botany. Of lexicographical character, it includes oral and written Arabic botanical traditions as well as much Persian material. Written in beautiful prose, it was the standard work in the field for generations. None of ad-Dīnawarī's works on mathematics or the Qurʾān have been preserved. There are, however, fragments of his observations on astronomy, Kitāb al-anwāʾ. The only work that has survived in full is al-akhbār aṭ-ṭiwāl (“The Long Narratives”), a history of Persia written from the Persian, rather than the Arabic, viewpoint.

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Universalium. 2010.

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