MoMath + Wolfram

Funding for this project generously provided by Overdeck Family Foundation

around 1070–1079 CE

Khayyam's Al-jabr

Examples of elementary algebra to cubic equations

Omar Khayyam’s Maqalah fi al-jabr wa-al muqabalah provides examples of algebra, including definitions and discussions on cubic equations. Khayyam composed the treatise in Samarkand under the patronage of Samarkand's governor, Abu Tahir Abd al-Rahman ibn 'Alaq, most likely between the years 1070–1079 CE.

Khayyam's Al-jabr

Khayaam is more well known as the author of the Rubáiyát in the Western World, but his works on mathematics had a profound influence on the Islamic world. He also worked as an astronomer for the court of Sultan Malik-Shah I (1054–1092). Fourteen other works were bound into this volume, with subjects ranging from astronomy to music to navigation.

Artifact dimensions

6.1 in. × 9.6 in.

Artifact origin

Samarkand, Uzbekistan

Current artifact location

Columbia University in the City of New York Library

Catalog number

Smith Oriental MS 45


Algebra timeline Babylonian Metric Algebra Problems Tablet Berlin Pythagorean Theorem Papyrus Rhind Papyrus Al-Khwārizmī's Al-Jabr Khayyam's Al-jabr Cardano's Ars Magna Recorde's Whetstone of Witte Faulhaber's Academia Algebrae Wallis's Treatise of Algebra Emerson's Treatise of Algebra Hermes's Suitcase of Göttingen

Interactive Content

coming soon

Computational Explanation

coming soon