Ibn Al Jazzar
Abu Ja'far Ahmad b. Abi Khalid Ibn al-Jazzar, born in Qayrawan, hailed from a family of physicians. 1 He studied with the famous Jewish philosopher and physician Ishaq b. Sulayman al-Isra'ili (ca. 243/855- 343/955) , and then started a practice of his own in his native city, where he died at an advanced age in the year 979/980. He led an austere life, devoting himself to the study and practice of medicine. Every summer he used to travel to al-Munastir, on the Mediterranean coast, where he would stay in a famous Sufi-cell. He did not look for a position, like many of his colleagues, at one of the princely courts. As part of his medical practice he received and examined his patients during the hours of consultation, and in particular analysed their urine. His servant Rashiq would then administer to them the required medicines, free of charge.
Ibn al-Jazziir was a prolific author in the field of medicine; his writings earned him great fame and made him very influential in medieval western Europe. His Kitab al-adwiya al-mufrada (Treatise on Simple Drugs) was translated into Greek, Latin and Hebrew and was frequently copied. But its Latin translation by Constantine the African, under the title Liber de gradibus, was of special importance, since it was in this version that the text became one of the most popular pharmacopeia in the Latin West.
His Tibb al-fuqara ' wa al-masakin (Medicine for the Poor) represents a literary topic which became especially popular during the Middle Ages, when works of this type were written by different authors, as, for instance, al-Razi and Peter of Spain.
Ibn al-Jazzar's most important and most influential work is his Zad al- musafir wa-qut al-hadir (Provisions for the Traveller and the Nourishment of the Settled), which is for the greater part still in manuscript. This work, consisting of seven books, is not, as the title suggests, a guide for the traveller, but a systematic medical handbook, discussing the different diseases and their treatment a "capite ad calcem" (from head to toe) in a concise form.  The work contains many valuable quotations from the works of famous physicians and philosophers, such as Hippocrates, Aristotle, Rufus, Galen, Paul of Aegina, Palladios, Polemon etc. Already in the beginning of the 11th century it was translated into Greek and widely distributed. Its popularity in Jewish circles is attested by the fact that it was translated thrice into Hebrew: by an anonymous translator under the title Ya'ir Nativ in 1124, then by Moses Ibn Tibbon in 1254 under the title Zedat ha-Derakhim, and finally by Abraham Ben Isaac as Zedah la-Orehim. Translated into Latin by Constantine the African in 1124 under the title Viaticum peregrinantis, Ibn al-Jazzar's Zad became one of the most influential medical handbooks in medieval Europe. The book on fevers and the book on sexual diseases have been recently edited and translated into English. Once accepted into the so-called Articella or Ars medicinae, a well-devised compendium of medical textbooks, it was widely used in medical schools (Salerno, Montpellier), and in universities (Bologna, Paris, Oxford).
Ibn al-Jazzar also wrote a treatise on the treatment of forgetfulness (Risalah fi al-nisyan wa-'ilajihi) which has been recently edited and translated into English; see Gerrit Bos, Ibn al-Jazzar, Risala fi l-nisyan (Treatise on Forgetfulness), London, 1995).
 On his biographical data and works, see Ibn Juljul, Tabaqat al-atibba', 88-91; Ibn Abi Usaybi'a, 'Uyun al-anba', 481-2; Brockelmann, GAL 1,238, Suppl. 1,424; Cherif, La medecine arahe en Tunisie, 53-70; Ullmann, Die Medizin imIslam, 147-9; idem, Naturund Geheimwissenschaflen, 25, n. 5; Sezgin, GAS III, 304-7; E.I.2 III, 754 s.v. "Ibn al- Djazziir" (H.R.ldris); Dols, Medieval Islamic Medicine, 67-9; Suwaysi-al-Radi (eds.), Zad al-musafir, 7-24; Dugat, "Etudes sur le traite de medecine d' Abou Dja 'far AI)mad, intitule: Zad al-Mocafir."
 See E.I.2, IV, II 1-2, s.v. "Ishak ibn Sulayman al-Isra'ili' (A. Altmann). As a physician he became famous in the Latin west through translations into Latin of his K. al-hummayat (On fevers) and K. al-bawl (On urine). See Jacquart-Micheau, La medecine arahe, III.
 Much confusion surrounds the year of his death; Hajji Khalifah (Kashf al-Zunun II, 318) mentions three dates, namely, I. before the year 400/1010, 2. the year 400/1010 itself, and 3. after this year. Brockelmann (GI, 238), without stating why, specifies it as the year 395/1004. Other scholars like Idris have adopted this date as well. Ibn Juljul refers in his K. Tabaqat al-atibba " 90, which he composed in the year 987, to the death of Ibn al-Jazzar. This means that he must have died before 987. Ibn 'Idhari mentions in his K. al-bayan al-mughrib I, 237, the date 369/979-980 as the year of his death. Ullmann (Natur- und Geheimwissen.ychaflen, 25, n. 5) and Sezgin (op. cit., 304) give this date as the correct one. Suwaysi-al-Radi, op. cit., 9-11, surmise that Ibn al-Jazzar died shortly before the year 360/971. I have adopted Ullmann's opinion.
 For this work, which is still in manuscript, see Ullmann, op. cit., 268-9; Sezgin, op. cit., 304-5; facs. ed. MS Aya Sophia 3564.
 Ed. S. Catahier, Paris 1983; cf. JacquaI1-Micheau, op. cit., 113, n. 69. For an analysis of this treatise see my forthcoming article "Ibn al-Jazzar's Tibb al-fuqara wa-al-lmasakin."
 Al-Razi composed, according to Ibn Abi Usaybi'a, 'Uyun, 427, a monograph entitled Tibb al-fuqara' (cf. Sezgin, op. cit., 294).
 Peter of Spain (13th cent.), doctor and philosopher, who became pope under the name John XXI, composed a Thesaurus pauperum (ed. Rocha Pereira in: Obras Medicas de Pedro Hispano, 235-271); cf. Jacquart- Thomasset, Sexuality and Medicine in the Middle Ages, 91; Wack, Lovesicknes in the Middle Ages, 84.
 See Ullmann, "Neues zu den diaetetischen Schriften des Rufus yon Ephesos," 38: "Der Titel yon Ibn al-Jazzar's Buch: Zad al-musafir ...ist dagegen reine Rhetorik, eine figura per merismum, die nichts anderes besagt, als dass das Buch fiir jedermann gedacht ist."
 See Steinschneider, Die hebraischen Ã????bersetzungen, 703-5.
 See, Gerrit Bos, Ibn al-Jazzar on Sexual Diseases: A critical edition of "Zad al-musafir wa-qut al-hadir": Provisions for the Traveller and Nourishment for the Sedentary, Book 6. The original Arabic text, with an English translation, introduction and commentary [The Sir Henry Wellcome Asian Series] (London: Kegan Paul Internatonal, 1998).
 Cf. Ullmann, op. cit., 147-8; Sezgin, op. cit., 305-6; Dugat, "Etudes sur le traitc de medecine d' Abou Dja'far A~mad, intitule: Zad al-Mo",afir;"
by: FSTC Limited, Mon 20 September, 2004