Muslim Contributions in Geography


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Muslim Contributions in Geography

  2. 2. Muslims' great concern for geography originated with their religion.
  3. 3. Islam requires each Muslim to have at least enough knowledge of geography to know the direction of the Qiblah
  4. 4. Pilgrimage as well as commerce in the vast Muslim empire needed communication
  5. 5. From the beginning of the seventh century, the knowledge of geography was equally growing with the spread of Islam
  6. 6. Thousands of Muslim coins, discovered in the excavations of Scandinavia, Finland, Russia, Kazan, etc
  7. 7. Al-Khwārizmī's (780-850)  He was born in Baghdad, Iraq.  His major work is Kitāb ṣūrat al-Arḍ (Arabic: ‫كتاب‬ " ‫صورة األرض‬Book on the appearance of the Earth" or "The image of the Earth"
  8. 8. Al-Khwārizmī corrected Ptolemy's gross overestimate for the length of the Mediterranean Sea (from the Canary Islands to the eastern shores of the Mediterranean)
  9. 9. Al-Khwārizmī depicted the Atlantic and Indian Oceans as open bodies of water, not land-locked seas as of Ptolemy
  10. 10. Abdullah al-Mamun (786-833) He was the seventh caliph, or ruler of the Islamic Empire, of the Abbasid dynasty He ordered geodetic measurements, to determine the size of the earth, and the drawing of a large map of the world
  11. 11. Abu al-Hasan Ali ibn al-Husayn al-Masudi (896-956)  He was an Abbasid-era Arab historian based in Baghdad  He traveled the world journeying from Persia, Central Asia, India, the Near East, Madagascar and the China Sea
  12. 12. Al-Masudi’s book: Muruj adh-Dhahab (Meadows of gold) is a compilation of his travel observations and studies
  13. 13. Muhammad ibn Ahmad Shams al-Din Al-Muqaddasi (946-1000, Jerusalem) He was author of : "Ahsan al-Taqasim fi Ma`rifat il-Aqalim" (The Best Divisions for Knowledge of the Regions) His book gives a systematic account of all the places and regions he had visited
  14. 14.  Al-Muqaddasi was the first geographer to produce maps in natural colors  The Arab-Muslim maps point upwards to the South, the North downwards  The maritime voyages necessitated the tables of Latitude and Longitude as well as the use of the astrolabe and other nautical instruments
  15. 15. Abu Rayhan al-Biruni (973-1048, Kath [Uzbekistan] ) He is famous for a) Cartography b) Geodesy c) Mineralogy
  16. 16. Cartography By the age of 22, Biruni had written including several a short study of works, map projections, Cartography, which included a method for projecting a hemisphere on a plane
  17. 17. Geodesy and geography   Al-Biruni is regarded as the father of geodesy He was the first known writer to identify certain geological facts, such as The formation of sedimentary rocks  The great geological changes that happened in the past 
  18. 18. Mineralogy  Al-Biruni introduced the scientific method into mineralogy in his Kitab al-Jawahir (Book of Precious Stones)
  19. 19. Abū 'Ubayd 'Abd Allāh al-Bakrī (1014-1094)  He was a SpanishArab geographer  He wrote about Europe, North Africa, and the Arabian peninsula His primary work was: a) Kitāb al-Masālik wa-al-Mamālik ("Book of Highways and of Kingdoms") b) Mu'jam
  20. 20.  Al-Bakri work was based on literature and the reports of merchants and travelers
  21. 21.  Al-Bakri arranged place names alphabetically, and lists the names of villages, towns, wadis, and monuments which he culled from the Hadith histories and from
  22. 22. Al Idrisi’s (1099-1166, Ceuta –Spain) His book: ‘Nuzhat al-Mushtaq fi Ikhtiraq al-Afaq,’ (The Delight of Him Who Desires to Journey Through the Climates) is a geographical encyclopedia
  23. 23. In 1166 Al-Idrisi, built a large global map He meticulously recorded on it the seven continents with trade routes, lakes and rivers, major cities, and plains and mountains.
  24. 24. Al-Idrisi’s books were translated into Latin and became the standard books on geography for three centuries, both in the east and west
  25. 25. Ibn Battuta (1304-1368, Tangier- Morocco) He was the only medieval traveler who is known to have visited the lands of every Muslim ruler of his time.
  26. 26.  • Ibn Battuta lived by the motto - 'never, if possible, cover any road a second time‘. "Rihla - My Travels". Is the story of Ibn Battuta’s travels. It is a valuable record of places.
  27. 27. Ibn Majid (1430-1500, Julfar [UAE] ) He invented the compass in the field of geography
  28. 28. Ibn Majid wrote several books on marine science and the movements of ships, which helped people of the Persian Gulf to reach the coasts of India, East Africa and other destinations
  29. 29.  Ibn Majid’s most important work was: Kitab al-Fawa’id fi Usul ‘llmal-Bahr wa’l Qawa’id (Book of Useful Information on the Principles and Rules of Navigation) written in 1490 It is a navigation encyclopedia
  30. 30.  Ibn Majid’s Hawiyat, a poem of some 1,082 verses, is a genuine treasury of navigational theory  Another important book named al-Urdjuza covering the same subject
  31. 31.  Ibn Majid’s rich contribution to the affairs of the sea benefited the sciences of geography and oceanography, especially in the Indian Ocean  In 1498, Vasco Da Gama, while sailing up the east coast of Africa met Ibn Majid. His guidance to Vasco Da Gama, led to the downfall of Arab sea power in the Indian Ocean
  32. 32. Discovery of the America is thought to have been aided by Muslims’ contribution to Geography E. Renan, in his book Averroes and Averrosism, mentions a letter written by Columbus in October 1498 in which he admits that one of the sources which led him to assume the existence of the 'New World' was the work of Ibn Rushd (Averroes) of the 12th century