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Document Details :

Title: Greek Manuscripts in the Early Abbasid Empire
Subtitle: Fiction and Facts about their Origin, Translation and Destruction
Author(s): VAN KONINGSVELD, P.S.
Journal: Bibliotheca Orientalis
Volume: 55    Issue: 3-4   Date: mei - augustus 1998   
Pages: 345-372
DOI: 10.2143/BIOR.55.3.2015860

Abstract :
The Abbasid Caliph Al-Ma'mûn (who reigned in Baghdad from 813-833) emerges from ancient sources and modern studies as the key-figure in the translation process from Greek into Arabic which played such an essential role in the history of Islamic civilization, especially during its formative period. Arab and non-Arab authors alike tend to describe the achievements of this caliph with admiration and euphoria. According to Sourdel the reign of Al-Ma'mûn gained fame “by the immense number of translations of foreign scientific works which took place at the instigation of the sovereign”.

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