Skip to search
Skip to main content
Title starts with
Author (sorted by title)
Call number (browse)
Princeton University Library Catalog
The Abbasid House of Wisdom : between myth and reality / Ekmeleddin İhsanoğlu.
Abingdon, Oxon ; New York, NY : Routledge, 2023.
xi, 93 pages ; 23 cm
Bayt al-Ḥikmah (Iraq)
Learned institutions and societies
Islamic learning and scholarship
"This volume examines the library of the Abbasid caliphs, known as 'The House of Wisdom' ('Bayt al-Hikma'), exploring how this important institution has been misconceived by scholars'. This book places the palace library within the framework of the multifaceted cultural and scientific activities in the era of the caliphs, Harun al-Rashid and al-Ma'mun, generally regarded as the Golden Age of Islamic civilization. The author studies the first references to the House of Wisdom in European sources and shows how misconceptions arose because of incorrect translations of Arabic manuscripts and also because of how scholars overlooked the historical context of the library in ways that reflected their own cultural and national ambitions. The Abbasid House of Wisdom is perfect for scholars, students and the wider public interested in the scientific and cultural activities of the Islamic Golden Age"-- Provided by publisher.
Includes bibliographical references and index.
Part I. Baghdad and the Rise of Interest in Foreign Sciences
A. Revisiting the Abbasid House of Wisdom
B. Short Note on the Proposed Origins of the House of Wisdom
Part II. Creating a Myth
Part III. Dissecting the Myth
A. Bayt al-Hikma and Translation Movement
B. Bayt al-Hikma as a University
Part IV. What to Call a Library in Arabic?
Part V. What was the Abbasid Caliph's Library Called?
Part VI. Was the House of Science an Arena for Debates?
Part VII. What was the Reality?
A. The Origin of Book Collections
B. Patronage Associated with the Library
C. The Library and Greek Books
D. Abbasid Caliphal Library and Persian Royal Libraries
Part VIII. What Happened to the House of Wisdom?
Part IX. The Impact
Part X. Concluding Remarks.
Show 15 more Contents items
Statement on language in description
Princeton University Library aims to describe library materials in a manner that is respectful to the individuals and communities who create, use, and are represented in the collections we manage.