Caliphs as Sponsors of Islamic Sciences
in Baharudin Ahmad, ed, Islamic Science and the Contemporary World (Kuala Lumpur: International Institute for Islamic Thought and Civilization, 2008), pp 107-116
It was the consistent patronage of eminent Muslim scholars and scientists by the Abbasid rulers of Baghdad, especially Caliph Abdallah al-Mamun AI-Rasheed, and the Umayyad rulers of Andalusia (Muslim Spain), particularly Caliphs Abd ar Rahman-III and Abd al-Hakem-II, that essentially contributed to the realization of the Golden Age of Muslims from 8th to 13th century. In the first half of the 9th century, Caliph al-Mamun took the Abbasid patronage of translation and scientific works to new heights by founding in Baghdad's Bayt al Hikma (House of Wisdom), where eminent scholars translated into Arabic the works of ancient science from Greek, Chinese and Indian civilizations. Over time, the House of Wisdom became the then Muslim world's premier place for the production of innovative scientific works in philosophy, mathematics, algebra and astronomy by in-house scholars like Abu YousufYaqoub al-Kindi, Abu Jafar Muhammad ibn Musa al-Khawarizimi and several others. Soon, other leading Muslim cities of the time like Cairo, Fez, Samarkand and Cordova became centres of scientific learning and research. In Cordova, Andalusia, Rahman-III and Hakem-II played an exceptional role in promoting educational activities and patronising prominent scholars, thereby contributing to Andalusia's Golden Age of Muslims that eventually led to European renaissance. Full Text