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The Islamic Medicine in the Period of Islamic Rennaisance

The notable physicians during this period were as follows:

Bukhtishu family of Physicians. The oldest amongst these was Jibrail Bukhtishu who was the Chief Physician at the Hospital in Jundishapur. He came from a Christain family and was summoned to the court of Caliph Mamun (148AH/765 AD) when the latter fell ill. After having treated him successfully he was invited to stay in Baghdad and head a hospital there but he declined and returned to his native Jundishapur.(152 AH/769 AD) It was his son Jurjis Bukhtishu who was later invited by Caliph Harun-ul-Rashid to come to Baghdad to treat him (171AH/787 AD) and then offered to be the Chief Physician and head a hospital in Baghdad which he did till he died in 185 AH/801 AD).

Masawaih is another family of physicians associated with early Islamic History.During the reign of Caliph Harun-ul-Rashid the elder of the family migratd from Jundishapur t Baghdad and become a celebrated Ophthalmologist. He wrote the first Arabic treatise on ophthalmology. His son known to the west as Mesue Senior with real name of Yuhanna ibn Masawayh wrote several medical works in Arabic while translating other works from Greek.He is known for somewhat of a sarcastic temperament none the less commanded great repect becuase of his medical expertise.

Hunayn ibn Ishaq who was a student of ibn Masawayh became the greatest translator of Greek and Syriac medical texts during the 3rd century AH/9th century AD. He was responsible for masterly translations of Galen,Hippocrates, Aristotle into Arabic. He also improved the Arabic Medical lexicon giving it a rich technical medical language to express medical terninology and thus laid the foundations of the rich medical expression in Arabic language far superceeding the later translations from Arabic to Latin.He was himself an astute physician and wrote two original works on ophthalmology.

The credit of the first sytematic work on medicine during this era goes to a muslim physician Ali ibn Rabban al-Tabbari hailing from Persia but settling in Baghdad in the first half of the 3rd century AH/9th century AD. His work called 'Firdaws a--Hikma' or 'Paradise of Wisdom' contained extensive information from all extant sources including Greek, Syriac,Persian and Indian and contained an extensive treatment of Anatomy.

Adapted from the book: "Islamic Medicine" by: "Husain F.Nagamia"

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