L’Algebre Al-Badi’ d’Al-Karagi. Manuscrit de la Bibliotheque Vaticane, Barberini Orientale 36, 1.

Al-Karagi, Abi Bakr Muhammad - Anbouba, Adel. (Editor).

Book ID: 30270


8 vo. 86 pp., of Arabic text, 50 pp., of French text, title in Arabic and in French printed in black and red, original publisher’s wrappers, Unopened, index, light foxing to outer edges, Arabic cover lightly soiled, otherwise copy inside in mint condition, Publications de l’Universite Libanaise Section des Etudes Mathematiques II, Beirut, 1964.


This work contains the study of the algebra called al-Badī‘ fī al-Hisāb (literally: “the Wonderful on calculation”), written by the Persian mathematician Abu Bakr Muḥammad ibn al-Ḥusain al-Karaǧi (previously known as al-Karẖī, native from Karaǧ, Persia. Written c. 1010 in Baghdad, this work takes an important place in history of mathematics in general. Of particular interest are the first known appearance of a theory on root extracting of algebraic polynomials, and the beginning of a tendency to get rid of illustrating formulas and the resolutions of equations with help of geometric figures, which makes it a pure algebraic text. This work of high level addresses to a public with advanced mathematic knowledge. This algebra is, by will of the author, written in three main parts (books), containing p`123456 art of Euclid’s Elements (book I), a theory on root extracting of algebraic polynomials (book II),
and a collection of problems on indeterminate analysis (book III). Some chapters are written hastily, while others go into the details. We provide a complete translation of the Badī‘, based on the transcription of the manuscript 36,1 of the Vatican library Barberini Orientale by Adel Anbouba (edited in Beyrouth in 1964), as well as a glossary. This translation comes with a mathematical commentary, and includes a list of significant words used by the author. We will also relate this algebra with other prior and later works containing the same problems.

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