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Muhammad al-Kashgari

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Mahmud ibn Hussayn ibn Muhammad al-Kashgari (Uyghur: مەھمۇد قەشقىرى‎ Mehmud Qeshqiri, Turkish: Kaşgarlı Mahmut, Arabic: محمود بن الحسين بن محمد الكاشغري‎ - Maḥmūd ibnu 'l-Ḥussayn ibn Muḥammad al-Kāšġarī) (Mahmûd Qašqarî) was an 11th century Turkic scholar and lexicographer of Turkic languages from Kashgar.

His father, Hussayn, was the mayor of Barsgan and related to the Qara-Khanid (Karahanlı) ruling dynasty. His mother, Bibi Rābiy'a al-Basrī, was of Arab origin.

Al-Kashgari studied the Turkic dialects of his time and wrote the first comprehensive dictionary of Turkic languages, the Dīwānu l-Luġat al-Turk (Arabic: "Compendium of the languages of the Turks") in 1072. It was intended for use by the Caliphs of Baghdad, the new, Arabic allies of the Turks. Mahmud Kashgari's comprehensive dictionary contains specimens of old Turkic poetry in the typical form of quatrains (Persio-Arabic رباعیات rubāiyāt; Turkish: dörtlük), representing all the principal genres: epic, pastoral, didactic, lyric, and elegiac. His book also included the first known map of the areas inhabited by Turkic peoples. This map is housed at the National Library in Istanbul.[1]

Kashgari map
World Map from Kashgari's Diwan, showing the lands as known at the time. Map oriented to East being on top.

Mahmud al-Kashgari died in 1102 at the age of 97 in Upal, a small city southwest of Kashgar, and was buried there. There is now a mausoleum erected on his gravesite. He is remembered by Uyghurs as a prominent Uyghur scholar.[2]



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Claudius PtolemyClaudius Ptolemy
(Greek: Κλαύδιος Πτολεμαῖος, Klaudios Ptolemaios; Latin: Claudius Ptolemaeus; c. AD 90 – c. AD 168), was a Roman citizen of Egypt who wrote in Greek.[1] He was a mathematician, astronomer, geographer, astrologer, and poet (of a single epigram in the Greek Anthology).[2][3] He lived in Egypt under Roman rule, and is believed to have been born in the town of Ptolemais Hermiou in the Thebaid. He died in Alexandria around AD 168.[4]

Ptolemy was the author of several scientific treatises, at least three of which were of continuing importance to later Islamic and European science. The first is the astronomical treatise now known as the Almagest (in Greek, Ἡ Μεγάλη Σύνταξις, "The Great Treatise", originally Μαθηματικὴ Σύνταξις, "Mathematical Treatise"). The second is the Geography, which is a thorough discussion of the geographic knowledge of the Greco-Roman world. The third is the astrological treatise known sometimes in Greek as the Apotelesmatika (Ἀποτελεσματικά), more commonly in Greek as the Tetrabiblos (Τετράβιβλος "Four books"), and in Latin as the Quadripartitum (or four books) in which he attempted to adapt horoscopic astrology to the Aristotelian natural philosophy of his day.


Al-Idrisi And Roger’s Book

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Al-Idrisi And Roger’s Book

Written by Frances Carney Gies

World Map of Idrisi

In the year 1138, the royal palace at Palermo, Sicily was the scene of a long-awaited meeting between an unusual Christian king and a distinguished Muslim scholar. As his visitor entered the hall, the king rose, took his hand and led him across the carpeted marble to a place of honor beside the throne. Almost at once the two men began to discuss the project for which the scholar had been asked to come from North Africa: the creation of the first accurate—and scientific—map of the entire known world.

The monarch was Roger II, King of Sicily; his distinguished guest the Arab geographer al-Idrisi. Born in Ceuta, Morocco, across the strait from Spain, al-Idrisi was then in his late 30's. After studying in Cordoba, in Muslim Spain, he had spent some years in travel, covering the length of the Mediterranean, from Lisbon to Damascus. As a young man with poetic pretensions he had written student verse celebrating wine and good company, but in the course of his journeys he had discovered his real passion: geography.


Muhammad al-Idrisi

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  Muhammad al-Idrisi

Tabula Rogeriana

The Tabula Rogeriana, drawn by al-Idrisi for Roger II of Sicily in 1154,
one of the most advanced ancient world maps.
Modern consolidation, created from the 70 double-page spreads of the original atlas.
(Note that the north is at the bottom, and so the map appears "upside down")

Abu Abd Allah Muhammad al-Idrisi al-Qurtubi al-Hasani al-Sabti
or simply Al Idrisi (Arabic: أبو عبد الله محمد الإدريسي‎; Latin: Dreses) (1099–1165 or 1166) was a Muslim geographer, cartographer, Egyptologist and traveller who lived in Sicily, at the court of King Roger II. Muhammed al-Idrisi was born in Ceuta then belonging to the Almoravid Empire and died in Sicily. Al Idrisi was a descendent of the Idrisids, who in turn were descendants of Hasan bin Ali, the son of Ali and the grandson of the Islamic prophet Muhammad.[1]Al-Idrisi, world map


  • 1 Early life
  • 2 Tabula Rogeriana
  • 3 Nuzhatul Mushtaq
    • 3.1 Publication and translation
    • 3.2 Andalusian-American contact
  • 4 In popular culture
  • 5 See also
  • 6 Notes
  • 7 References
  • 8 Further reading
  • 9 External links

Early life

Al-Idrisi traced his descent through long line of Princes, Caliphs and Sufi leaders, to The Prophet Muhammad. His immediate forebears, the Hammudids (1016–1058), were an offshoot of the Idrisids (789-985).

Al-Idrisi's was born in Ceuta, where his great-grandfather had fled after the fall of Málaga in Al-Andalus (1057). He spent much of his early life travelling through North Africa, and Spain and seems to have acquired a detail information on both regions. He visited Anatolia when he was barely 16. He is known to have studied in Córdoba, and later taught in Constantine, Algeria.

Apparently his travels took him to many parts of Europe including Portugal, the Pyrenees, the French Atlantic coast, Hungary, and Jórvík also known as York, in England.


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