Science and Islam: A History
Why this book?
As the Western Roman Empire crumbled in the early 5th century, science and learning were extinguished for a thousand years…or, perhaps not. As Ehsan Masood shows in this highly enjoyable book to accompany a BBC series, Islamic scholars did much more than simply blow on the cinders of ancient Greek learning to keep them burning from the 8th to the 16th century. Names such as ibn-Sina, Jabir ibn-Hayyan, and Al-Khwarizmi may not be quite so well known to Western European ears as Copernicus, Galileo, and Descartes, but Masood shows that they were actively involved in medicine, chemistry and mathematics during this time. So go with Masood on a journey through the Umayyad and Abbasid dynasties, and beyond to be persuaded that the so-called ‘Dark Ages’ were perhaps not quite so dark as we’ve been led to believe.