Abū Rayḥān Muḥammad ibn Aḥmad al-Bīrūnī was born on Thursday, 3rd of Dhū al-Hijjah, 362 H (4th September AD 973) at Madīnah Khwārizm. His exact birthplace is still a matter of controversy. It is conjectured that he was born in the outskirts (bīrūn) of Kath, at al-Jurjāniyah, Khwārizm or at a place called Bīrūn, as implied by his nickname al-Bīrūnī. The only clue given by al-Bīrūnī was that he was born in a city in Khwārizm. The name Abū Rayḥān was given to him because of his love for sweet fragrance. Al-Bīrūnī died on 443 H (AD 1051).
He knew Persian but preferred Arabic, because the latter was more suitable for academic pursuit. Most of his numerous books and compendia were written in Arabic. He received some of his early education under the tutelage of the astromathematician Abū Naṣr Manṣur b. 'Alī b. Īrāq al-Jilāni (d. ca. 427 H) and ˓Abd Al-Samad b. ˓Abdal Samad from Khwārizm. This is in addition to his formal elementary religious education at the madrasah, an institution where...
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