The Introduction of Arabic Words in Medieval British Latin Scientific Writings
The Introduction of Arabic Words in Medieval British Latin Scientific Writings
Abstract and Keywords
Latin was the key language for scientific discourse in writing in medieval Britain. It frequently had need of new terminology to capture new developments within the various fields. Arabic sources were important in the period for both ideas and terminology. This chapter discusses the stages by which Arabic words were assimilated into British Latin, from being strange foreign words to becoming familiar Latin terms, and addresses the question of at what stage they should be included in a Latin lexicography or dictionary.
AMONG THE TRANSLATORS OF TEXTS FROM Arabic into Latin in the 12th and early 13th centuries there are more British scholars than scholars from any other European country: the best known are Adelard of Bath, ‘Abd al-Masiḥ of Winchester, Robert of Ketton, Robert of Chester, Alfred of Shareshill, and Michael Scot. These scholars spent time in the Crusader States (Adelard and ‘Abd al-Masīh), Spain (the two Roberts, Alfred and Michael), and Sicily (Adelard and Michael). But most of them returned to England, bringing their translations and possibly original Arabic manuscripts with them. Thus English students and scholars figure prominently among the earliest readers and users of the texts they translated from Arabic: Walcher, Abbot of Greater Malvern, H. Ocreatus and Daniel of Morley (both followers of Adelard), Roger of Hereford, Robert Grosseteste, Roger Bacon, and many others.1 These scholars were motivated by a desire for knowledge—especially in the exact and natural sciences. Adelard of Bath was translating and teaching a curriculum in geometry, astronomy, astrology, and magic. Daniel of Morley was introducing works of natural science and cosmology that he had picked up in Toledo to the incipient Oxford schools. Roger was an astronomer and astrologer in Hereford Cathedral, who drew on texts by Raymond of Marseilles. Grosseteste expanded his interests, which may have been nurtured in Hereford, from natural science to theology. Roger Bacon was inspired by Arabic works on mathematics and alchemy to propose a whole new curriculum of learning. Being British did not necessarily mean that one wrote one’s texts in Great Britain. William the Englishmen proclaimed himself a ‘citizen of Marseilles’ (p.199) (Moulinier-Brogi 2011). Nevertheless, most of these British scholars were in England or returned to England, and their Latin is of particular interest for the ways in which they handled material from Arabic sources.
The translators introduced Arabic words into the fields in which they worked, mainly geometry, astronomy, astrology, alchemy, and natural science (British translators were not so involved with medicine). How did they introduce these Arabic words, and how should modern editors and dictionary-writers deal with the Arabic words that appear in their texts? These are the questions that will be asked in this chapter.2
In these texts one can trace a progressive assimilation of Arabic words into Latin:
1) Arabic words are added in Arabic script.
2) Arabic words are added in transliteration, but are not declined and are separate from the text.
3) Arabic words, added in transliteration but not declined, are incorporated within the Latin text.3
4) Arabic words are declined as if they are Latin words and they generate Latin suffixes.
5) Arabic words are imitated with a Latin calque.
Let us take these stages one by one.
1. Arabic Words are Added in Arabic Script
This is very rare. Three manuscripts in English hands provide the oldest text of the Liber trium iudicum, a set of astrological judgements collected from Arabic texts in the valley of the Ebro in the mid-12th century. In this text one can work out astrologically matters concerning theft: what has been stolen, where it has been taken, will the stolen goods be recovered, and above all who (p.200) is the thief. The letters in the name of the thief can be derived from the letters associated with each of the planets. These letters are given in their Arabic forms, presumably because the translations were literal, the thieves’ names were Arabic, and they consisted of Arabic letters. The astrologer could adapt them to the context of Christian names, following the key of approximate Latin letters written above the Arabic ones.4
Similarly, in manuscripts of Adelard of Bath’s translations of Euclid’s Elements known respectively as ‘Adelard Version I’ and ‘Adelard Version II’ the Arabic letters for marking the points on geometrical diagrams are written out in the margin (Burnett 2015). These remind the reader of a different alphabetic order, and uphold the importance of Arabic. But no whole words are written in the language.
2. Arabic Words are Added in Transliteration, but are not Declined and are Separate from the Text
Much more common is to find Arabic words in transliteration in the margins or written on top of their Latin equivalents in the text. When introducing new sciences, for which no technical terms, or an inadequate range of terms, already existed in Latin, it was necessary to make clear the relationship of the new terminology to the terminology of the source. It is also noticeable that when only Greek-derived terms survive in the earlier Latin tradition, native Latin words replace these Greek terms in the translations. This is already the case for several words that Adelard uses as equivalents for Arabic geometrical terms in his literal translation from Arabic of Euclid’s Elements known as Adelard Version I (c.1125). Thus equidistantes lineae (‘lines standing at an equal distance’) is given in the text for the definition of parallel lines in Book I, def. 24 (ADEL. Elem. I 32) next to elmuwezie in the margin (= Arabic al- muwāziya ‘running side by side, parallel’) in place of the Greek ‘parallelae’ which Adelard would have found in his Latin sources.5
Adelard is one of the earliest scholars to provide these Arabic words in a mathematical text.6 The largest number of such words is found in MS Brugge, (p.201)
Stadsbibliotheek 529 (13th century):7 e.g. ‘zeweia’ in the margin opposite to angulus = zāwiya (‘angle’); ‘alamud’ opposite to perpendicularis = al-‘amūɖ (‘column’); ‘elmunfariga’ opposite to obtusus = al-munḥarifa (‘slanting’ or (p.202) ‘oblique’);8 ‘elscekl’ opposite to figura = al-shakl (‘figure’). Phrases indicating how a theorem is dependent on the conclusion of a previous theorem appear only in Arabic: for example, in the margin opposite to Elements III, 7: ‘ex arba asserin i’ = arba‘ wa-‘ishrīn (‘from <book> I, <prop.> 24’); and Elements III, 8: ‘min whet waasserin i’ = min wāḥid wa-‘ishrīn (‘from <book> I, <prop.> 21’). On another occasion four different grammatical forms of the Arabic verb ‘contain’ (aḥāṭa) are given, occasioned by the Latin words contenta and continens in the definitions at the beginning of Elements IV. The same phenomenon is found in other translations of Adelard: a list of the 25 ‘states’ of the planets in the lower margin of British Library, MS Sloane 2030, f. 84v, below the Latin equivalent of the same 25 states in his translation of Abū Ma‘shar’s Abbreviation of the Introduction to Astrology (Abū Ma‘šar 110); two verse mnemonics entirely in Arabic in the margin of his version of al-Khwārizmi’s Astronomical Tables (Burnett 1996: 41–2).
The presence of Arabic words and phrases in the margins of texts suggest a context in which Arabic was still being used, perhaps in the course of teaching geometry and astronomy. They reflect the dialogue between teachers and pupils, sometimes made explicit in phrases such as ‘what is proposed will not escape the ingenuity of Adelard’ and ‘this comes from the satchel (or notebook) of Reginerus’.9 That the words are not written in Arabic script further implies that they were spoken, and written as they were heard, with consequences that I shall return to later on.
3. Arabic Words are Added in Transliteration and are not Declined, but they are Incorporated Within the Latin Text
Sometimes these words and phrases were incorporated into the text. The Arabic term may appear in the text and a Latin version in the margin. This is a characteristic of the literal translations of Gerard of Cremona in Toledo (1114–87), the most prolific of the Arabic–Latin translators. He retained Arabic transliterations in the text and added glosses, sometimes substantial, as explanations of the word (Burnett 2010: 38–9). It is also found in medical texts, in which the Arabic term is followed by the Latin form introduced by id est or seu (Jacquart 1994: 364; Arnald of Villanova 73, 85, 87, 101, 107, 109, 117, 147, 155, 163; Zipser 2013). The Arabic glosses in Adelard Version I of the Elements tended to be omitted by copyists of the manuscripts. But when (p.203) the Arabic word was within the text, it remained part of the text. In some cases the inclusion of such words might reflect the same bilingual teaching context as the marginal words do. For example, the phrase ‘feeffehem’ (= fí nafsihim, ‘in themselves’) appears in the margin opposite Elements III, prop. 35, but is then incorporated, in the singular, into the text of Adelard’s pupil Ocreatus: vides igitur quomodo disposui .xxxiii. que cum vellem ducere sinaphihi (=fí nafsihi) (‘You see, therefore, how I arranged 33, when I wished to multiply this by itself’: Helcep Sarracenicum, Burnett 1996: 276).
The very word ‘Helcep’ is an example of an undeclined Arabic term, shared only by Ocreatus and the author of an introduction to arithmetic in Cambridge, Trinity College, MS R. 15.16, who evidently belonged to Adelard’s circle (Burnett 1996: 221–2). In the first paragraph of his Helcep Sarracenicum (‘Saracen calculation’) Ocreatus explains Helcep as ‘dealing with the multiplication and division of integers and also the multiplication of fractions’ (de multiplicatione scilicet numerorum et divisione, necnon etiam de multiplicatione proportionum, Burnett 1996: 262). The introduction to arithmetic (f. 3r) simply glosses the word Helcep as id est numerandi (‘i.e. of numbering’). It is clear, therefore, that ‘helcep’ is the pronunciation in Adelard’s circle of the Arabic word al-ḥisāƀ, used for arithmetic, and specifically ‘calculation in the Indian way’ (what we call calculation with Arabic numerals). The uncertain position of the ‘h’ (caused by its virtual silence in pronunciation), the ‘el-’ for the Arabic definite article, the suppression of the penultimate vowel because of the accent on the last, and the unvoicing of the last consonant, conform to what we would expect in the pronunciation of Arabic in this circle.10
The passage of another Arabic word from the margin into the text and its being taken up by another author can be seen in the case of al-munḥarifa. This word, mentioned above as being equivalent to ‘obtusus’, appears again in the Brugge manuscript (‘elmunhar<ifa>’ with its last syllable missing because of trimming of the folio) in the margin opposite the Latin term ‘irregularis’ as the description of a trapezium in Elements I, def. 23 (22). In Adelard Version II, the most widespread version of Euclid’s Elements, ‘elmuharifa’ (with the ‘n’ missing) has replaced ‘irregularis’ in the text itself. The same word ‘elmuarifa’ (now dropping the unpronounced ‘h’) was then used by the 13th-century English music theorist known as Anonymous IV, to describe a note shaped like a trapezium (Burnett 1986).11
The most primitive forms of Arabic proper names in Latin texts are similarly undeclined. Thus al-Khwārizmī appears as ‘Alchoarismi’ in the (p.204) nominative and genitive case in the earliest, anonymous, Latin version of his work on Indian arithmetic (Folkerts 1997), just as ‘Almagesti’ was the undeclined name of Ptolemy’s astronomical text in Gerard of Cremona’s translation (Kunitzsch 1974) and Daniel of Morley’s reference to this translation.12
These undeclined Arabic words should probably not be regarded as part of the Latin Wortschatz, and would not therefore qualify for inclusion in the DMLBS, on the same grounds as ‘the exclusion of vernacular words (English, Anglo-Norman, Welsh, or Gaelic) that appear undisguisedly in Latin writings’.13 Adelard, at least, appears to have regarded such words as different from Latin, since, in the earliest copy of his translation of al-Khwārizmi’s Astronomical Tables (Oxford, Bodleian Library, MS Auct. F.1.9, second quarter of the 12th century, f. 99v) the Arabic words are distinguished by being written in red (see Burnett 1997: Plate 3).
4. Arabic Words are Declined as if they are Latin Words and Generate Latin Suffixes
But on the same opening page of al-Khwārizmi’s Astronomical Tables, al- Khwārizmi’s name is declined: ‘Ezich Elkuarezmi (‘the Tables of al-Khwārizmi’) … in hoc volumine ab Elkuarezmo (‘in this book by al-Khwārizmi’). This would seem to be the next stage in the assimilation of Arabic words into Latin. We can see a deliberate attempt to progress to this stage in the preface of Stephen of Antioch, a contemporary of Adelard, to his translation of ‘Alī ibn al-‘Abbās al-Majūsī’s medical compendium, the Kitāb al-Malakī (completed in 1127), where he informs his readers that ‘he leaves (the names of the materia medica) in Arabic … but has declined them according to the form of Latin declensions’ (prout sunt in Arabico ea proferimus … set ad Latine formam declinationis inclinata, Burnett 2000: 36).14
One Arabic term appearing in the text of Adelard Version I is mutakāfin (‘mutually corresponding, commensurate’), which appears three times in Elements VI—once with a feminine plural ending (def. 2: superficies mutekefie (p.205) sunt …, ‘surfaces are mutually corresponding …’) and twice with a neuter plural ending (prop. 14: latera illos equales angulos continentia mutekefia, ‘the sides containing the equal angles being commensurate’, and the almost identical phrase in prop. 29). The same word recurs in ALF. ANGL. Plant. 543, §158: si ergo fuerint mutakefia, mergetur medietas lapidis in aquam medietasque supereminebit (‘if they are mutually corresponding, half the stone is submerged, and half remains above the water’). In all these cases the Arabic text has the same word, to which the translator has simply added a Latin termination. However, Alfred also uses the term in the context of his own commentary on the Meteora of Aristotle in respect to substances which mix reciprocally.15 The word has become part of Alfred’s Latin Wortschatz, and as such it has merited a lemma (mutakafia) in the DMLBS.
Sometimes the Latinisation of an Arabic word can be observed within the manuscript transmission of one work. In Abū Ma‘shar’s Abbreviation the indeclinable shemeli and genubi for ‘north’ and ‘south’ in British Library, MS Sloane 2030 (the oldest manuscript) have become the Latin adjectives shemelius and genubius in MS Digby 68 (14th century).16
One can trace a similar progression in the case of ‘al-Khwārizmi’, which begins its life in Latin literature as an indeclinable proper name, as we have seen, but is then adopted as the name for the ‘Indian Calculation’ (al-ḥisāb al-hindī) which he had written about. Now, as algorismus (the technical term for Indian Calculation, using the nine ‘Arabic’ numerals with place value), it is fully declined as a masculine second-declension noun, as can be seen from the widely diffused 13th-century texts on the subject: Alexander de Villa Dei’s Carmen de algorismo and John de Sacrobosco’s Algorismus vulgaris.
Another term which soon became Latinised is ‘alchimia’ (from Arabic al-kimiyā ’, with the same meaning of ‘alchemy’). In 1144, Robert of Chester, who also revised Adelard’s translation of al-Khwārizmi’s Astronomical Tables, introduced a translation of an Arabic text on alchemy (Liber Morieni) with the words: quoniam quid sit alchymia nondum vestra cognovit Latinitas, in presenti sermone elucidabo (‘Since Latin culture has not yet understood what “alchymia” is, I shall enlighten you in the present work’: Ruska 1928: 30). His claim to introduce ‘alchymia’ to the Latins is questionable in the light of possibly earlier translations of works on astrology that include judgements on (p.206) when to practise alchemy (Burnett 1992).17 These not only refer to ‘alkimia’ without explanation but also decline the word as a Latin first-declension noun. For example, in the translation by Hugo of Santalla (fl. 1145) of ‘Umar ibn al-Farrukhān’s Iudicia the chapter on alchemy begins: Aomar, De alkimia. Alkimie vero disciplina utrum apud quempiam firma atque certa constiterit habita questione (‘ ‘Umar on alchemy. When the question has been asked whether the discipline of alchemy has been fixed firmly and surely in a man …’). Admittedly the spelling of the word varies between alchymia, alkimia, and alquimia, before settling down to alchimia, but it is clear that the Arabic word was assimilated into Latin very quickly, and was never glossed or displaced by a native Latin word. Moreover, it soon generated derivatives, formed according to the Latin fashion, including, among those in the DMLBS, alchimicus, alchimista, alchimistice, alchimisticus, and alchimistria.
5. Arabic Words are Imitated with a Latin Calque
Other Arabic terms were clearly insecure in Latin or did not reach a wide audience. Helcep for ‘Indian Calculation’ was soon displaced by the Arabic name algorismus. But other Arabic words used by Adelard were replaced by Latin calques—a Latin word that acquired a specific meaning from its Arabic origin. For example, Adelard simply transliterated the Arabic term sahm as ‘cehem’ for ‘astrological lot’ (Abū Ma‘šar 128–35). But since the common meaning of sahm was ‘share’ (originally allotted by shuffling and throwing ‘arrow heads’, the basic meaning of sahm), it was the Latin equivalent of ‘share’ (pars) which became the technical term for ‘lot’.18 This was not a happy choice, because pars could mean several other things, including, within the astrological context, a ‘degree’. Similarly, dakaica (from daqā’iq the plural of daqiqa in Arabic), meaning ‘minute’ of a degree, was replaced in a later manuscript with minutia, sharing the meaning of the Arabic for ‘particle’.19 Robert of Chester, in his revision of Adelard’s translation of al-Khwārizmī ’s Astronomical Tables, replaced several Arabic words with Latin calques, including, most remarkably, sinus for Adelard’s ‘elgeib’, because al-jayb in Arabic normally meant ‘bosom’, whereas, in fact, the Arabic word, in this case, was a transliteration of Sanskrit jiva, meaning (p.207) ‘bow-string’ (Mercier 1987: 98). The Latin sinus, whether introduced by Robert deliberately, or by an oversight, then became the origin for the English mathematical ‘sine’. Robert also followed the lead of Petrus Alfonsi who, earlier in the 12th century, had used the term draco (‘dragon’) for the lunar node, as a direct translation of the Arabic al-jawzahr (= ‘dragon’, from the Persian), which Adelard had transliterated as ‘elgauzahr’ (Mercier 1987: 117; Kunitzsch 1977: 32 and 47–8).
Some Latin calques on the corresponding Arabic terms are found widely in Latin translations from the Arabic: e.g. pars for ‘(astronomical) degree’ corresponding to the Arabic juz’ which means both ‘part’ and ‘degree’, differentia for ‘chapter’, corresponding to the Arabic faṣl which means both ‘difference’ and ‘chapter’, and facies for ‘decan’ (a third of a sign of the zodiac), corresponding to the Arabic wajh which means both ‘decan’ and ‘face’.20
The massive translation of Arabic scientific texts into Latin resulted in a whole new terminology for these subjects, consisting both of transliterations of the Arabic terms, and of new Latin terms created from the original Arabic terms.21 In fact, because of the literal nature of the Arabic–Latin translations of the 12th and 13th centuries as a whole, in which each ‘word was squeezed out of and corresponded exactly to the original word’ (verbum verbo expressum comparatumque22), one could say that much of Latin scientific literature, in terms of vocabulary and style, was in a sense calqued on Arabic. Arabic and Latin words could be merely juxtaposed (as we see in Adelard’s first translation of Euclid’s Elements), or they could be mixed together in a kind of macaronic text which suggests a bilingual context, especially among scholars with roots in Spain. And eventually, they could become part of a common vocabulary in the sciences, and, in the words of the editors of the DMLBS ‘made such a mark on the scientific and technical vocabulary of the Medieval Latin’.23
Abū Ma‘šar The Abbreviation of the Introduction to Astrology Together with the Medieval Latin Translation of Adelard of Bath, ed. and trans. C. Burnett, K. Yamamoto & M. Yano (Leiden, Brill, 1994).
ADEL. Elem. I The First Latin Translation of Euclid’s Elements Commonly Ascribed to Adelard of Bath, ed. H. L. L. Busard (Toronto, Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies, 1983).
ALF. ANGL. Alfred of Shareshill
Met. In Meteora, ed. J. K. Otte, Alfred of Sareshel’s Commentary on the Metheora of Aristotle: Critical Edition, Introduction, and Notes (Leiden and New York, E. J. Brill, 1987).
Plant. De Plantis, in ed. H. J. Drossaart Lulofs & E. L. J. Poortman, Nicolaus Damascenus de Plantis: Five Translations (Amsterdam, Oxford, New York, North-Holland, 1989).
Arnald of Villanova Arnaldi de Villanova Opera Medica Omnia, 17: Translatio libri Albuzale de medicinis simplicibus, ed. J. Martínez Gázquez & M. R. McVaugh (Barcelona, Fundació Noguera, 2004).
Boeth. Isag. Anicii Manlii Severini Boethii In Isagogen Porphyrii commenta, ed. G. Schepss & S. Brandt (Vienna and Leipzig, F. Tempsky, 1906).
D. MORLEY Phil. Daniel of Morley, Philosophia, ed. G. Maurach, Mittellateinisches Jahrbuch, 14 (1979), 204–55.
Burnett, C. (1985), review of Busard (1983), Archives internationales d’histoire des sciences, 35: 475–80.
Burnett, C. (1986), ‘The Use of Geometrical Terms in Medieval Music: elmuahim and elmuarifa and the Anonymus IV’, Sudhoffs Archiv, 70: 198–205.
Burnett, C. (ed.) (1987), Adelard of Bath: An English Scientist and Arabist of the Early Twelfth Century (London, The Warburg Institute).
Burnett, C. (1992), ‘The Astrologer’s Assay of the Alchemist: Early References to Alchemy in Arabic and Latin Texts’, Ambix, 39: 103–9.
Burnett, C. (1993), ‘Ocreatus’, in M. Folkerts & J. P. Hogendijk (eds), Vestigia mathematica: Studies in Medieval and Early Modern Mathematics in Honour of H. L. L. Busard (Amsterdam, Rodopi), 69–77.
Burnett, C. (1996), ‘Astrology’, in F. A. C. Mantello & A. G. Rigg (eds), Medieval Latin: An Introduction and Bibliographical Guide (Washington, DC, The Catholic University of America), 369–82.
Burnett, C. (1997), The Introduction of Arabic Learning into England, Panizzi Lectures, 1996 (London, The British Library).
Burnett, C. (1999), ‘‘Abd al-Masīḥ of Winchester’, in L. Nauta & A. Vanderjagt (eds), Between Demonstration and Imagination: Essays in the History of Science and Philosophy Presented to John D. North (Leiden, Brill), 159–67.
Burnett, C. (2000), ‘Antioch as a Link between Arabic and Latin Culture in the Twelfth and Thirteenth Centuries’, in A. Tihon, I. Draelants & B. van den Abeele (eds), Occident et Proche-Orient: contacts scientifiques au temps des croisades (Turnhout, Brepols), 1–78. Reprinted with corrections in Burnett (2009), article IV.
Burnett, C. (2010), ‘The Enrichment of Latin Philosophical Vocabulary through Translations from Arabic: The Problem of Transliterations’, in O. Weijers, I. Costa & A. Oliva (eds), Les innovations du vocabulaire latin à la fin du moyen âge: autour du Glossaire du latin philosophique (Turnhout, Brepols), 37–44.
Burnett, C. (2013), ‘Simon of Genoa’s Use of the Breviarium of Stephen, the Disciple of Philosophy’, in B. Zipser (ed.), Simon of Genoa’s Medical Lexicon (London, Versita), 67–78.
Burnett, C. (2015), ‘Manuscripts of Latin Translations of Scientific Texts from Arabic’, in E. Steiner & L. Ransom (eds), Taxonomies of Knowledge: Information and Order in Medieval Manuscripts (Philadelphia, PA, University of Pennsylvania Libraries), 80–9.
Busard (1983) see ADEL. Elem. I.
Dykes, B. (2011), The Book of the Nine Judges: Traditional Horary Astrology (Minneapolis, MN, The Cazimi Press).
Folkerts, M. (1970), ‘Boethius’ Geometrie II: ein mathematisches Lehrbuch des Mittelalters (Wiesbaden, F. Steiner).
Folkerts, M. (1987), ‘Adelard’s Versions of Euclid’s Elements’, in C. Burnett (ed.), Adelard of Bath: An English Scientist and Arabist of the Early Twelfth Century (London, The Warburg Institute), 55–68.
Folkerts, M. (1997), Die älteste lateinische Schrift über das indische Rechnen nach al-Ḥwārizmi, Abhandlungen der Bayerische Akademie der Wissenschaften, Philosophisch-historische Klasse. Neue Folge, Heft 113 (Munich, Verlag der Bayerischen Akademie der Wissenschaften; In Kommission bei C. H. Beck).
Jacquart, D. (1994), ‘Note sur la traduction latine du Kitab al-Manṣūrī de Rhazes’, Revue d’histoire des textes, 24: 359–74.
Juste, D. (2007), Les Alchandreana primitifs: étude sur les plus anciens traités astrologiques latins d’origine arabe (Xe siècle) (Leiden, Brill).
Kunitzsch, P. (1974), Der Almagest: Die Syntaxis Mathematica des Claudius Ptolemäus in arabisch-lateinischer Überlieferung (Wiesbaden, Harrassowitz).
Kunitzsch, P. (1977), Mittelalterliche astronomisch-astrologische Glossare mit arabischen Fachausdrücken, Sitzungsberichte der Bayerischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, Philosophisch-historische Klasse, Jahrgang 1977, Heft 5, (Munich, Verlag der Bayerischen Akademie der Wissenschaften: In Kommission bei C. H. Beck).
Kunitzsch, P. (1984), Glossar der arabischen Fachausdrücke in der mittelalterlichen europäischen Astrolabliteratur, Nachrichten der Akademie der Wissenschaften in Göttingen, I: Philologisch-historische Klasse 11 (Göttingen, Akademie der Wissenschaften in Göttingen).
Latham, J. D. (1972), ‘Arabic into Medieval Latin’, Journal of Semitic Studies, 17: 30–67.
Latham, J. D. (1976), ‘Arabic into Medieval Latin (2)’, Journal of Semitic Studies, 21: 120–37.
(p.210) Mercier, R. (1987), ‘Astronomical Tables in the Twelfth Century’, in C. Burnett (ed.), Adelard of Bath: An English Scientist and Arabist of the Early Twelfth Century (London, The Warburg Institute), 97–118.
Moulinier-Brogi, L. (2011), Guillaume l’Anglais, le frondeur de l’uroscopie médiévale (XIIIe siècle) (Geneva, Librairie Droz).
Nothaft, P. (forthcoming 2016), Walcher of Malvern, De lunationibus and De Dracone, study, edition, translation, and commentary.
Ruska, J. (1928), ‘Zwei Bücher De compositione Alchemie und ihre Vorreden’, Archiv für Geschichte der Mathematik, der Naturwissenschaft und der Technik, 11: 28–37.
Sharpe, R. (1997), A Handlist of the Latin Writers of Great Britain and Ireland before 1540 (Turnhout, Brepols).
Strohmaier, G. (1994) ‘Constantine’s Pseudo-Classical Terminology and its Survival’, in C. Burnett & D. Jacquart (eds), Constantine the African and ‘Ali ibn al-‘Abbās al-MağūsÄ«: the Pantegni and Related Texts (Leiden, Brill), 90–8.
Zipser, B. (ed.) (2013), Simon of Genoa’s Medical Lexicon (London, Versita).
(1.) For most of these scholars the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography and Sharpe (1997)—both essential companions to the DMLBS —provide the most up-to-date information. For ‘Abd al-Masiḥ of Winchester see Burnett (1999); for Ocreatus see Burnett (1993). For Walcher of Malvern see Nothaft (2016), which also includes Petrus Alfonsi brought up in Huesca, when it was still under Islamic rule, Walcher’s colleague and an adoptive Englishman. This chapter is not concerned with the extensive assimilation of Arabic words used in trade, warfare, agriculture, and technology, which were introduced into British Latin through oral transmission.
(2.) The DMLBS, which includes within its bounds all these texts, provides a source for such a study. Whenever a term has (or is suspected of having) an Arabic etymon, that Arabic word has been mentioned. In the earlier fascicules of the dictionary (up to fascicule XIV) these etymons were provided by the Arabist, Derek Latham (latterly Professor of Arabic at Edinburgh University), and he wrote two useful articles giving more information about these words (Latham 1972; 1976). He looked forward to a future time when it would be possible to ‘formulate certain orthographic and philological principles which, when established on … solid foundations …, will lighten the labours of future workers in the field (of Arabic etymons)’ (Latham 1972: 31). After his death in 2005, a variety of scholars took his place, including the present author. For a parallel study concerning the translation of Greek into Arabic and from Arabic into Latin see Strohmaier (1994).
(4.) Oxford, Bodleian Library, MS Bodley 430 f. 100r. The chapters on the thief are carried over into the Liber novem iudicum, and the Arabic letters are retained, even in the English translation of this text: Dykes (2011: 378–82).
(5.) Greek-derived words are found in the Latin texts on Euclidean geometry surviving from late Antiquity, especially in Boethius’s partial translation of Euclid’s Elements: see Folkerts (1970: 177–217).
(6.) Earlier are the Arabic words in the 10th-century Catalonian Latin texts on (a) astrology (the Alchandreana, which includes the Arabic names of the planets, the signs of the zodiac, the lunar mansions, and the letters of the alphabet; see Juste 2007: 653–66), and (b) astrolabe terminology (Kunitzsch 1984).
(8.) ‘Munfariga’ represents a typical example of the phoneme ‘h’ merging with that of ‘f’ in the medieval Spanish context, to which Adelard’s Arabic belongs.
(10.) This circle evidently included speakers of ‘Western Arabic’, from Spain or North Africa whose pronunciation of Arabic differed from that of the East. ‘Helcep’ is included in the DMLBS where the Arabic etymon is given as al-ḥsāƀ, which (if it is not a mistake) accurately represents the suppressing of the penultimate vowel in pronunciation.
(11.) See also Holford-Strevens (this vol., ch. 7).
(12.) D. MORLEY Phil. 244–5: Girardus Tholetanus, qui Galippo mixtarabe interpretante Almagesti latinavit (‘Gerard of Toledo who, with Ghālib the Mozarab interpreting, translated the Almagest’).
(13.) ‘A Note on the Editorial Method’, reprinted for the first volume (A–L) of the DMLBS in Fasc. V (1997: iv).
(14.) Note that Simon of Genoa, in the late 13th century, criticises Stephen for doing this, and prefers to retain the Arabic forms in his own descriptive glossary of materia medica, the Clavis sanationis: ‘… and some Arabic words, but they have been twisted (by Stephen) into the Latin way of declining, and because of this their proper pronunciation has been corrupted’ (… et aliqua Arabica, sed ad Latinum modum declinandi extorta et ob hoc a propria prolatione corrupta: Burnett 2013: 73).
(15.) ALF. ANGL. Met. 70: set viscus non coagulatur, mutakefia enim sunt in eo unctuositas et liquor et inseparabiliter mixta (‘but a viscous substance does not coagulate; for oiliness and water are commensurable in it and inseparably mixed’).
(16.) ipsorum etiam que shemeli, que autem genubi sint presciri convenit (‘it befits to know in advance which of (the planets) are shemeli, which genubi’): Abu ū Ma‘šar 92–3. Bodleian, MS Digby 68, f. 116r substitutes que scemelia, que autem genubia.
(17.) It is also curious that Robert of Chester does not use the ‘el’ form of the Arabic definite article, which he clearly uses in his revision of al-Khwārizmī ’s Astronomical Tables: see examples in Mercier (1987: 116–18).
(18.) This replaced an earlier term ‘sors’ which was based on the Greek word for the same thing: κλῆρος.
(19.) It is curious that Adelard adopts the plural form of the Arabic word, constructing the nominative singular dakaica and the accusative plural dakaicas (Abū Ma‘šar 94).
(20.) The Arabic origins of these senses of the Latin words are not mentioned in the DMLBS: see pars 3b, differentia 5c, facies 11.
(21.) In respect to the science of the stars, this is demonstrated in Burnett (1996: 372–7) where the astrological terms in literature predating the translations from Arabic are shown to be largely replaced by a new set of terms during and after the translations.
(22.) A phrase from Boethius’ second commentary to the Isagoge of Porphyry (Boeth. Isag. 135), which was part of an influential statement of the advantages of literal translation.
(23.) ‘A Note on the Editorial Method’, reprinted for the first volume (A–L) of the DMLBS in Fasc. V (1997: v).