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1 Burnside Western Civilization- Medieval

The House of Wisdom: How the Arabs Transformed Western Civilization

by

The House of Wisdom: How the Arabs Transformed Western Civilization Cover

ISBN13: 9781596914599
ISBN10: 1596914599
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

The remarkable story of how medieval Arab scholars made dazzling advances in science and philosophy — and of the itinerant Europeans who brought this knowledge back to the West.

For centuries following the fall of Rome, western Europe was a benighted backwater, a world of subsistence farming, minimal literacy, and violent conflict. Meanwhile Arab culture was thriving, dazzling those Europeans fortunate enough to catch even a glimpse of the scientific advances coming from Baghdad, Antioch, or the cities of Persia, Central Asia, and Muslim Spain. There, philosophers, mathematicians, and astronomers were steadily advancing the frontiers of knowledge and revitalizing the works of Plato and Aristotle. In the royal library of Baghdad, known as the House of Wisdom, an army of scholars worked at the behest of the Abbasid caliphs. At a time when the best book collections in Europe held several dozen volumes, the House of Wisdom boasted as many as four hundred thousand. Even while their countrymen waged bloody Crusades against Muslims, a handful of intrepid Christian scholars, thirsty for knowledge, traveled to Arab lands and returned with priceless jewels of science, medicine, and philosophy that laid the foundation for the Renaissance. In this brilliant, evocative book, Lyons shows just how much "Western" culture owes to the glories of medieval Arab civilization, and reveals the untold story of how Europe drank from the well of Muslim learning.

Review:

"Pertinent study that should aid in a better understanding between East and West." Kirkus Reviews

Review:

"With a storyteller's eye for the revealing detail and an artist's feel for the sweep of history, Jonathan Lyons has uncovered the debt that the Christian world — and Western civilization — owes to Muslim philosophy and science. The House of Wisdom is a fascinating and picturesque page-turner." Ian Bremmer, author of The J Curve

Synopsis:

The remarkable story of how medieval Arab scholars made dazzling advances in science and philosophy—and of the itinerant Europeans who brought this knowledge back to the West.

For centuries following the fall of Rome, western Europe was a benighted backwater, a world of subsistence farming, minimal literacy, and violent conflict. Meanwhile Arab culture was thriving, dazzling those Europeans fortunate enough to catch even a glimpse of the scientific advances coming from Baghdad, Antioch, or the cities of Persia, Central Asia, and Muslim Spain. T here, philosophers, mathematicians, and astronomers were steadily advancing the frontiers of knowledge and revitalizing the works of Plato and Aristotle. I n the royal library of Baghdad, known as the House of Wisdom, an army of scholars worked at the behest of the Abbasid caliphs. At a time when the best book collections in Europe held several dozen volumes, the House of Wisdom boasted as many as four hundred thousand.
 
Even while their countrymen waged bloody Crusades against Muslims, a handful of intrepid Christian scholars, thirsty for knowledge, traveled to Arab lands and returned with priceless jewels of science, medicine, and philosophy that laid the foundation for the Renaissance. I n this brilliant, evocative book, Lyons shows just how much “Western” culture owes to the glories of medieval Arab civilization, and reveals the untold story of how Europe drank from the well of Muslim learning.
Jonathan Lyons served as an editor and foreign correspondent—mostly in the Muslim world—for Reuters for more than twenty years. He is now a researcher at the Global Terrorism Research Center and a Ph.D. candidate in the sociology of religion, both at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia.
Jonathan Lyons' The House of Wisdom tells the story of how medieval Arab scholars made dazzling advances in science and philosophy—and of the itinerant Europeans who brought this knowledge back to the West.  For centuries following the fall of Rome, western Europe was a benighted backwater, a world of subsistence farming, minimal literacy, and violent conflict. Meanwhile Arab culture was thriving, dazzling those Europeans fortunate enough to catch even a glimpse of the scientific advances coming from Baghdad, Antioch, or the cities of Persia, Central Asia, and Muslim Spain. There, philosophers, mathematicians, and astronomers were steadily advancing the frontiers of knowledge and revitalizing the works of Plato and Aristotle. In the royal library of Baghdad, known as the House of Wisdom, an army of scholars worked at the behest of the Abbasid caliphs. At a time when the best book collections in Europe held several dozen volumes, the House of Wisdom boasted as many as four hundred thousand.
 
Even while their countrymen waged bloody Crusades against Muslims, a handful of intrepid Christian scholars, thirsty for knowledge, traveled to Arab lands and returned with priceless jewels of science, medicine, and philosophy that laid the foundation for the Renaissance. In this brilliant, evocative book, Lyons shows just how much “Western” culture owes to the glories of medieval Arab civilization, and reveals the untold story of how Europe drank from the well of Muslim learning.
“Dust will never gather on Jonathan Lyons' lively new book of medieval history . . . Lyons tells his multilayered story deftly, forsaking the tyranny of chronology to flesh out ideas and personalities.”Stephen OShea, Los Angeles Times Book Review
 
“Sophisticated and thoughtful . . . In The House of Wisdom, Jonathan Lyons shapes his narrative around the travels of the little-known but extraordinary Adelard of Bath, an English monk who traveled to the East in the early 12th century and learned Arabic well enough to translate mathematical treatises into English . . . Mr. Lyons's narrative is vivid and elegant.” –Eric Ormsby, Wall Street Journal

"Jonathan Lyons tells the story of the House of Wisdom, the caliphs who supported it and the people who worked there, at a riveting, breakneck pace."The Times (UK)

"The House of Wisdom: How the Arabs Transformed Western Civilization is a 320-page treasure trove of information for the uninitiated that packs a powerful punch of science, history, geography, politics and general knowledge at a time when so much disinformation about the Arab world is swirling around in various media."—Magda Abu-Fadil, The Huffington Post

"With a storyteller's eye for the revealing detail and an artist's feel for the sweep of history, Jonathan Lyons has uncovered the debt that the Christian world—and Western civilization—owes to Muslim philosophy and science. House of Wisdom is a fascinating and picturesque page-turner."—Ian Bremmer, author of The J Curve

"Lyons capably delineates the fascinating journey of [Arab] knowledge to the West, highlighting a few key figures, including Adelard of Bath, whose years spent in Antioch paid off grandly in bringing forth his translations of Euclid and al-Khwarizmi; and Michael Scot, science adviser and court astrologer to Frederick II, who translated Avicenna and Averroes."—Kirkus Reviews

About the Author

Jonathan Lyons served as an editor and foreign correspondent — mostly in the Muslim world — for Reuters for more than twenty years. He is now a researcher at the Global Terrorism Research Center and a Ph.D. candidate in the sociology of religion, both at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

steve.herald, January 29, 2009 (view all comments by steve.herald)
One has only to look at where the first European universities appeared to realize the tremendous influence of Islamic philosophy and science on what Lyons calls the "invention of the West."

Though certainly not the first writer to tell this tale, Lyons will be for most readers the source from which they first heard it. Fortunately, he tells the story well.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(10 of 16 readers found this comment helpful)

Product Details

ISBN:
9781596914599
Subtitle:
How the Arabs Transformed Western Civilization
Author:
Lyons, Jonathan
Publisher:
Bloomsbury Press
Subject:
World
Subject:
History
Subject:
Civilization, western
Subject:
World - General
Subject:
Medieval
Subject:
East and West
Subject:
Civilization, Western -- Arab influences.
Subject:
Middle East - General
Subject:
Europe - General
Subject:
World History - Medieval and Renaissance
Subject:
Middle East
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
20100330
Binding:
Paperback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
BandW Illustrations throughout
Pages:
272
Dimensions:
9.25 x 6.13 in

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History and Social Science » Western Civilization » Medieval

The House of Wisdom: How the Arabs Transformed Western Civilization Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$17.95 In Stock
Product details 272 pages Bloomsbury Publishing PLC - English 9781596914599 Reviews:
"Review" by , "Pertinent study that should aid in a better understanding between East and West."
"Review" by , "With a storyteller's eye for the revealing detail and an artist's feel for the sweep of history, Jonathan Lyons has uncovered the debt that the Christian world — and Western civilization — owes to Muslim philosophy and science. The House of Wisdom is a fascinating and picturesque page-turner."
"Synopsis" by ,
The remarkable story of how medieval Arab scholars made dazzling advances in science and philosophy—and of the itinerant Europeans who brought this knowledge back to the West.

For centuries following the fall of Rome, western Europe was a benighted backwater, a world of subsistence farming, minimal literacy, and violent conflict. Meanwhile Arab culture was thriving, dazzling those Europeans fortunate enough to catch even a glimpse of the scientific advances coming from Baghdad, Antioch, or the cities of Persia, Central Asia, and Muslim Spain. T here, philosophers, mathematicians, and astronomers were steadily advancing the frontiers of knowledge and revitalizing the works of Plato and Aristotle. I n the royal library of Baghdad, known as the House of Wisdom, an army of scholars worked at the behest of the Abbasid caliphs. At a time when the best book collections in Europe held several dozen volumes, the House of Wisdom boasted as many as four hundred thousand.
 
Even while their countrymen waged bloody Crusades against Muslims, a handful of intrepid Christian scholars, thirsty for knowledge, traveled to Arab lands and returned with priceless jewels of science, medicine, and philosophy that laid the foundation for the Renaissance. I n this brilliant, evocative book, Lyons shows just how much “Western” culture owes to the glories of medieval Arab civilization, and reveals the untold story of how Europe drank from the well of Muslim learning.
Jonathan Lyons served as an editor and foreign correspondent—mostly in the Muslim world—for Reuters for more than twenty years. He is now a researcher at the Global Terrorism Research Center and a Ph.D. candidate in the sociology of religion, both at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia.
Jonathan Lyons' The House of Wisdom tells the story of how medieval Arab scholars made dazzling advances in science and philosophy—and of the itinerant Europeans who brought this knowledge back to the West.  For centuries following the fall of Rome, western Europe was a benighted backwater, a world of subsistence farming, minimal literacy, and violent conflict. Meanwhile Arab culture was thriving, dazzling those Europeans fortunate enough to catch even a glimpse of the scientific advances coming from Baghdad, Antioch, or the cities of Persia, Central Asia, and Muslim Spain. There, philosophers, mathematicians, and astronomers were steadily advancing the frontiers of knowledge and revitalizing the works of Plato and Aristotle. In the royal library of Baghdad, known as the House of Wisdom, an army of scholars worked at the behest of the Abbasid caliphs. At a time when the best book collections in Europe held several dozen volumes, the House of Wisdom boasted as many as four hundred thousand.
 
Even while their countrymen waged bloody Crusades against Muslims, a handful of intrepid Christian scholars, thirsty for knowledge, traveled to Arab lands and returned with priceless jewels of science, medicine, and philosophy that laid the foundation for the Renaissance. In this brilliant, evocative book, Lyons shows just how much “Western” culture owes to the glories of medieval Arab civilization, and reveals the untold story of how Europe drank from the well of Muslim learning.
“Dust will never gather on Jonathan Lyons' lively new book of medieval history . . . Lyons tells his multilayered story deftly, forsaking the tyranny of chronology to flesh out ideas and personalities.”Stephen OShea, Los Angeles Times Book Review
 
“Sophisticated and thoughtful . . . In The House of Wisdom, Jonathan Lyons shapes his narrative around the travels of the little-known but extraordinary Adelard of Bath, an English monk who traveled to the East in the early 12th century and learned Arabic well enough to translate mathematical treatises into English . . . Mr. Lyons's narrative is vivid and elegant.” –Eric Ormsby, Wall Street Journal

"Jonathan Lyons tells the story of the House of Wisdom, the caliphs who supported it and the people who worked there, at a riveting, breakneck pace."The Times (UK)

"The House of Wisdom: How the Arabs Transformed Western Civilization is a 320-page treasure trove of information for the uninitiated that packs a powerful punch of science, history, geography, politics and general knowledge at a time when so much disinformation about the Arab world is swirling around in various media."—Magda Abu-Fadil, The Huffington Post

"With a storyteller's eye for the revealing detail and an artist's feel for the sweep of history, Jonathan Lyons has uncovered the debt that the Christian world—and Western civilization—owes to Muslim philosophy and science. House of Wisdom is a fascinating and picturesque page-turner."—Ian Bremmer, author of The J Curve

"Lyons capably delineates the fascinating journey of [Arab] knowledge to the West, highlighting a few key figures, including Adelard of Bath, whose years spent in Antioch paid off grandly in bringing forth his translations of Euclid and al-Khwarizmi; and Michael Scot, science adviser and court astrologer to Frederick II, who translated Avicenna and Averroes."—Kirkus Reviews

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