Person: Ibn Tibbon, Jacob ben Machir
Jacob ben Tibbon was a French Jewish medical doctor who translated Arabic versions of Greek mathematics into Hebrew.
Mathematical Profile (Excerpt):
- The Almohads expelled the Jews from Muslim Spain in 1148, and Judah ben Saul ibn Tibbon together with many other learned refugees, went to the south of France.
- Samuel ben Judah ibn Tibbon's son, Moses ben Samuel ibn Tibbon, was born in Marseilles.
- Jacob was educated in Lunel and then studied medicine in the medical faculty of the University of Montpellier.
- Jacob ben Tibbon is himself known as a translator as well as a mathematician and an astronomer.
- Now Tibbon was much more than a translator, for he was a fine mathematician and astronomer writing original works in addition to the translations.
- For example, he wrote Jacob's Quadrant in which he describes a quadrant of his own invention.
- Jacob ben Tibbon also wrote Luhot (Tables) a book of astronomical tables giving ascensions of certain stars at Paris.
- The Italian astronomer Andalo di Negro wrote Canones Super Almanach Profatii in 1323 which dealt with Jacob ben Tibbon's tables in Luhot .
- Another work by Jacob ben Tibbon was Almanach Perpetuum which, as the title indicates, was a work on the almanac.
- At the time Tibbon wrote the work both the Toledan Tables of Arzachel and the newer Alfonsine Tables created for King Alfonso X of Castile were in use.
- Tibbon appears to state that he used the Toledan Tables but Pierre Duhem criticised him for using 'old' tables instead of the latest available to him.
- Tibbon's work was used by Copernicus in forming his theories.
Born 1236, Marseilles, Spain (now France). Died 1305, Montpellier, France.
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Thank you to the contributors under CC BY-SA 4.0!
Adapted from other CC BY-SA 4.0 Sources:
- O’Connor, John J; Robertson, Edmund F: MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive