17 Sep The Spread of Indian Mathematics
The study of mathematics appears to slow down after the onslaught of the Islamic invasions and the conversion of colleges and universities to madrasahs. But this was also the time when Indian mathematical texts were increasingly being translated into Arabic and Persian.
Although Arab scholars relied on a variety of sources including Babylonian, Syrian, Greek and some Chinese texts, Indian mathematical texts played a particularly important role.
Scholars such as Ibn Tariq and Al-Fazari (8th C, Baghdad), Al-Kindi (9th C, Basra), Al-Khwarizmi (9th C. Khiva), Al-Qayarawani (9th C, Maghreb, author of Kitab fi al-hisab al-hindi), Al-Uqlidisi (10th C, Damascus, author of The book of Chapters in Indian Arithmetic), Ibn-Sina (Avicenna), Ibn al-Samh (Granada, 11th C, Spain), Al-Nasawi (Khurasan, 11th C, Persia), Al-Beruni (11th C, born Khiva, died Afghanistan), Al-Razi (Teheran), and Ibn-Al-Saffar (11th C, Cordoba) were amongst the many who based their own scientific texts on translations of Indian treatises.
Records of the Indian origin of many proofs, concepts and formulations were obscured in the later centuries, but the enormous contributions of Indian mathematics was generously acknowledged by several important Arabic and Persian scholars, especially in Spain.
Abbasid scholar Al-Gaheth wrote: ” India is the source of knowledge, thought and insight”. Al-Maoudi (956 AD) who travelled in Western India also wrote about the greatness of Indian science.
Said Al-Andalusi, an 11th C Spanish scholar and court historian was amongst the most enthusiastic in his praise of Indian civilization, and specially remarked on Indian achievements in the sciences and in mathematics.
Of course, eventually, Indian algebra and trigonometry reached Europe through a cycle of translations, travelling from the Arab world to Spain and Sicily, and eventually penetrating all of Europe. At the same time, Arabic and Persian translations of Greek and Egyptian scientific texts became more readily available in India (Exerpts from Indic Mathematics)
By Prachodayat Team