Arabic Sciences and Philosophy (Arab Sci Philos)

Publisher: Cambridge University Press (CUP)

Journal description

This international journal is devoted to the history of the Arabic sciences mathematics and philosophy in the world of Islam between the eighth and the eighteenth centuries in a cross-cultural context. It publishes original studies of the highest standard on the history of these disciplines as well as studies of the inter-relations between Arabic sciences and philosophy on the one hand and Greek Indian Chinese Latin Byzantine Syriac and Hebrew sciences and philosophy on the other hand. Arabic Sciences and Philosophy casts new light on the growth of these disciplines as well as on the social and ideological context in which this growth took place. Articles are published in English French or German with abstracts in French and English. In 2000 there will be an issue dedicated to Avicenna's thought.

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Additional details

5-year impact 0.00
Cited half-life 0.00
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Article influence 0.00
Website Arabic Sciences and Philosophy website
Other titles Arabic sciences and philosophy (Online)
ISSN 0957-4239
OCLC 50515196
Material type Document, Periodical, Internet resource
Document type Internet Resource, Computer File, Journal / Magazine / Newspaper

Publisher details

Cambridge University Press (CUP)

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    • Author's Pre-print on author's personal website, departmental website, social media websites, institutional repository, non-commercial subject-based repositories, such as PubMed Central, Europe PMC or arXiv
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    • Published abstract may be deposited
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    • Publisher copyright and source must be acknowledged with set statement, for deposit of Authors Post-print or Publisher's version/PDF
    • Must link to publisher version
    • This policy is an exception to the default policies of 'Cambridge University Press (CUP)'
  • Classification
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Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Galen's On the Elements according to Hippocrates is an important source for physical doctrines circulating in late antiquity. The variety of atomistic doctrines that Galen brings into the discussion, as well as his arguments aimed at refuting them, were closely studied by the early kalām atomists. Of particular interest are the summaries of this text, which seem to have been written many centuries after Galen; some of them are products of early Islamicate culture. In this paper, we present an edition, translation, and study of a hitherto unknown summary, extent in a unique manuscript where it is attributed to Ḥunayn ibn Isḥāq. Like the other summaries, it presents a doxography of physical doctrines, not always repeating precisely what Galen says, but rather reflecting the discourse of its period.
    Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 03/2015; 25(01):33-78. DOI:10.1017/S0957423914000095
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    ABSTRACT: In his Sphaerica, Menelaus did not prove Proposition III.5 which is particularly important. He only gave an outline of a proof. Once the Sphaerica were translated into Arabic, mathematicians, starting from the end of the 9th century on, took up this proof. That was made possible to Ibn ʿIrāq thanks to the development of spherical geometry. A first paper contained the history of his contribution. Two other mathematicians, from the 13th century - Naṣīr al-Dīn al-Ṭūsī and Ibn Abī Jarrāda - worked out again the proof of the proposition with the help of Menelaus' book and of the new acquisitions of Ibn ʿIrāq. This is the subject of this second paper.
    Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 03/2015; 25(01):1-32. DOI:10.1017/S0957423914000083
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    ABSTRACT: Kalām atomism stood in opposition to the Aristotelian natural philosophy of the falāsifa. In the Physics of the Shifā', Ibn Sīnā undertook a detailed refutation of kalām atomism through several arguments. These arguments elicited a muted response from al-Ghazālī, whose commitment to kalām was minimal at best. A more forceful response seems to have been offered by al-Shahrastānī but its details remain sketchy due to the lack of surviving sources. Fakhr al-Dīn al-Rāzī, whose intellectual development went through a phase of commitment to Avicennism and thereby a vigorous endorsement of Ibn Sīnā's anti-atomist arguments followed by a phase of a critical engagement with Avicennism, provides a detailed rebuttal to Ibn Sīnā's arguments in addition to constructing novel arguments in defense of kalām atomism.
    Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 03/2015; 25(01):79-104. DOI:10.1017/S0957423914000101
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    ABSTRACT: In the Planisphaerium, Ptolemy deals with a method of representing a sphere onto a plane, according to principles which were compatible with the stereographic projection. But this projection will only become a real mathematical concept in the 9th century, when al-Farghānī will demonstrate the fundamental property of this projection. It is only in the 10th century that the first general theory of projections of spheres was worked out by al-Qūhī and Ibn Sahl. This paper addresses the reasons which allow to claim that Ptolemy did not conceive of projection and that this conception was based on the Apollonius' definition of the conical surface.
    Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 03/2015; 25(01):135-166. DOI:10.1017/S0957423914000125
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    ABSTRACT: The extant manuscript tradition of the Kitāb al-Kašf provides evidences of three phases of redaction and revision of the treatise. This study aims to illustrate the relations between the two Arabic versions and the anonymous fourteenth century Hebrew translation, taking into account the additions and modifications that differentiate them. I conclude that the Hebrew translation represents an intermediate stage of reworking, attesting important additions to the text as well as philosophical changes, especially in arguments concerning the creation of the world at the beginning of the treatise. However, it precedes the next revision phase of the text, which leaded to the modifications of the last Arabic version, in the chapters dealing with the thorny questions of divine corporeality and direction. The analysis of additions and arguments in the matter of content, context and reasoning helps to understand the redaction phases' history and the way the treatise was transmitted.
    Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 03/2015; 25(01):105-133. DOI:10.1017/S0957423914000113
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    ABSTRACT: In the Planisphaerium, Ptolemy deals with a method of representing a sphere onto a plane, according to principles which were compatible with the stereographic projection. But this projection will only become a real mathematical concept in the 9th century, when al-Farghani will demonstrate the fundamental property of this projection. It is only in the 10th century that the first general theory of projections of spheres was worked out by al-Quhi and Ibn Sahl. This paper addresses the reasons which allow to claim that Ptolemy did not conceive of projection and that this conception was based on the Apollonius' definition of the conical surface.
    Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 03/2015; 25(1):135-166. DOI:10.1017/50957423914000125
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: In his Sphaerica, Menelaus did not prove Proposition III. 5 which is particularly important. He only gave an outline of a proof. Once the Sphaerica were translated into Arabic, mathematicians, starting from the end of the 9th century on, took up this proof. That was made possible to Ibn. Iraq thanks to the development of spherical geometry. A first paper contained the history of his contribution. Two other mathematicians, from the 13th century - Nasir al-Din al-Tusi and Ibn Abi Jarrada - worked out again the proof of the proposition with the help of Menelaus' book and of the new acquisitions of Ibn. Iraq. This is the subject of this second paper.
    Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 03/2015; 25(1):1-32.
  • Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 09/2014; 24(02):181-209. DOI:10.1017/S0957423914000010
  • Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 09/2014; 24(02):211-267. DOI:10.1017/S0957423914000022
  • Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 09/2014; 24(02):297-307. DOI:10.1017/S0957423914000046
  • Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 09/2014; 24(02):269-296. DOI:10.1017/S0957423914000034
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    ABSTRACT: Since the beginning of mankind, man has been concerned with the conservation of food in order to prolong its edibility. Over time, different food preservation methods have been discovered and improved, and there are many works that describe these techniques. This work will describe the knowledge and the development of preservation techniques of inhabitants of the Iberian Peninsula. The work focuses on the various achievements from the first to the sixteenth centuries, allowing us to appreciate the different historic contributions. The selected and consulted works are: L.J.M. Columela, Los doce libros de Agricultura (The Twelve Books of Agriculture), Abū al-Jayr, Kitāb al-Filāḥa. Tratado de agricultura (Book of Agriculture), Ibn Baṣṣāl, Kitāb al-Filāḥa. Libro de agricultura (Book of Agriculture), Ibn al-ʿAwwām, Kitāb al-Filāḥa. Libro de Agricultura (Book of Agriculture), Ibn Luyūn, Kitāb al-Filāḥa. Tratado de Agricultura (Book of Agriculture), Alonso de Herrera, Agricultura general (General Agriculture).
    Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 03/2014; 24(01):139-168. DOI:10.1017/S095742391300012X
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of this article is to present a medieval Arabic report regarding six animals from the Gulf of Aden, to provide a zoological identification of five of the animals in question, which may be identified, and to comment on the biological data provided by the report in the light of both contemporary and modern zoological knowledge and, thus, to evaluate the scientific standard of the report.
    Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 03/2014; 24(01):169-180. DOI:10.1017/S0957423913000131
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    ABSTRACT: The article considers a brief catechistic presentation of a Galenic medical doctrine, the critical days, by the 9th century translator and thinker, Qusṭā ibn Lūqā (d. 912/3), found in a manuscript in Iran. The piece is first shown to have been derived from Galen's treatise on the critical days. Then, it is discussed section by section, in commentary form, to elucidate the medical doctrines Qusṭā propounds. Lastly, the piece is compared with an earlier attempt, by al-Kindī (d. c. 870), to describe the critical days mathematically. The various medical doctrines behind the treatise are discussed, as are the varying approaches to scientific method. The article concludes with contrasting the a priori mathematical scientific method of al-Kindī with the a posteriori empirical method of Galen/Qusṭā, and offers suggestions about the chronologies of the appearances of these doctrines and texts in Arabic. A transcription of the Arabic text is appended.
    Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 03/2014; 24(01):69-102. DOI:10.1017/S095742391300009X
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    ABSTRACT: Avicenna came to an unexpected conclusion in the treatise On Plants in al-Šifāʾ: that plants are not alive. This judgment is surprising in view of Aristotle's opinion that that which has a soul is alive. This paper shows that there is a development in Avicenna's thought on plants' life. He begins with the Aristotelian view that plants are alive inasmuch as they possess a soul, as we see in his early A Compendium on the Soul. Later, however, through his investigation of the faculties of the soul, discussed mainly in the first part of the Canon of Medicine, he is led to conclude that plants could not be said to be alive. This paper indicates the importance of considering the influence of Avicenna's medical findings on his philosophical arguments when examining the development of his thought.
    Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 03/2014; 24(01):127-138. DOI:10.1017/S0957423913000118
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    ABSTRACT: As is well known, taṣawwur and taṣdīq, conceptualization and assent, are essential notions in the epistemology of Arabo-Islamic philosophy. Conceptualization amounts to the definition of an object of knowledge, and assent to the recognition, via some kind of reasoning, that this definition is true. One of the authors who dealt with both topics in greatest depth was al-Fārābī, whose oeuvre exerted a profound influence on Ibn Bājja. This article analyzes the materials on taṣawwur and taṣdīq found in Ibn Bājja's notes regarding al-Fārābī's writings on logic and scientific method, namely the glosses to Kitāb al-Burhān. The analysis shows, on the one hand, that he understood perfectly the importance of both terms in al-Fārābī's construal of Aristotle's scientific method; and on the other, that he used them to deal with human thought processes. Indeed, conceptualization and assent were essential notions for Ibn Bājja, and underlie some of his best-known works.
    Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 03/2014; 24(01):103-126. DOI:10.1017/S0957423913000106
  • Source
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    ABSTRACT: Ḥunayn ibn Isḥāq's Arabic translation of Galen's commentary on the Hippocratic Epidemics is an invaluable source for our knowledge of Galenic medicine and its transmission history, not least because much of it is extant only in Arabic. Its importance for the Arabic medical tradition is amply attested in the later medical literature. It also tells us much about the methods and self-image of contemporary translators. Throughout the translation, we find remarks by Ḥunayn discussing the quality of his source text, his own interpretation and also his attempts to reconstruct problematic or damaged passages. Based on an edition of these notes, their analysis and comparison to similar texts and Galen's own thought on editing and interpreting difficult medical texts, this article aims to situate Ḥunayn's methods in the context of the Greek-Arabic translation movement. It argues that his approach differs in important respects from that of preceding Greek-Arabic and Greek-Syriac translators and that he was indebted to Galen not just as a physician, but also as a translator and exegete.
    Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 09/2011; 21(2):249-288. DOI:10.1017/S0957423911000038
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    ABSTRACT: This article lists the medical works written by Ibn Bājja, overviews those that have come down to us and studies the super-commentary of Galen's commentary to Hippocrates' "Aphorisms (Sharḥ fī al-Fuṣūl)". This text shows a deep influence of al-Fārābī, namely in a conception of medical experience which stems from the latter's construal of experience (tajriba) as the inductive process described by Aristotle in "Posterior Analytics" which brings the premises of demonstration. On this basis, Ibn Bājja advocated for a less scholastic, more empiric medicine, and his claim was echoed by Ibn Rushd. There are some similarities between Ibn Bājja's text and Ibn Rushd's "K. al-Kulliyyāt fī al-ṭibb" which suggests that the latter had read "Sharḥ fī al-Fuṣūl". This work gives moreover some evidence that human dissection could have been performed during Ibn Bājja's time.
    Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 03/2011; 21(1):111-48. DOI:10.1017/S0957423910000147