ḤASANB. ʿALI AL-QOMMI, ABU NAṢR, astrologer of the late 4th/10th century. Very little is known about this person. He was allegedly the author of an astrological treatise, titled Ketāb al-Bāriʿ or Ketāb al-madḵal elā ʿelm aḥkām al-nojum, dedicated to Abu ʿAmr Moḥammad b. Saʿid b. Marzubān Eṣfahāni; according to Ḥājji Ḵalifa (col. 1642) he composed it in 357/968. However, both its title and its contents seem to match the Ketāb al-madḵal elā ʿelm al-nojum wa-aḥkāmehā attributed to ʿAbd-al-Raḥmān Ṣufi (d. 376/986), which is also dedicated to Abu ʿAmr (Storey, II, part 1, p. 41; Sezgin, GAS VII, pp. 168-69, 372). Sezgin distinguishes between the two works by stating that Qommi quotes from Ptolemy, Vettius Valens, Mā-šāʾ-Allāh, and al-Kendi (GAS VII, pp. 174-75), while Ṣufi cites Yaʿqub b. Ṭāreq, ʿOmar b. al-Farruḵān, and Abu Maʿšar. The relation between the two texts is in need of further clarification. In any case, “the Ketāb al-madḵal of Abu Naṣr Qommi” is named as one of his sources by the author (probably Naṣir-al-Din Ṭusi) of the Safinat al-aḥkām (Sezgin, GAS VII, p. 24) and was cited by Faḵr-al-Din Rāzi in his Ketāb al-serr al-maktum (Ullmann, p. 333), with the effect that it became known as Ḥasan’s work by 1200 C.E. There is a Persian translation with the title Ketāb-e madḵal dar ʿelm-e nojum, the sole manuscript of which is in Berlin (copied in 806/1403-4; Storey, pp. 40-41, no. 74).
Ḥājji Ḵalifa, Kašf al-ẓonun, ed. G. Flü-gel, Leipzig, 1835-1958; Arabic text repr. in 2 vols., Beirut, 1992.
Heinrich Suter, Die Mathematiker und Astronomen der Araber und ihre Werke, Leipzig, 1900, pp. 74-75 (no. 174).
Manfred Ullmann, Die Natur und Geheimwissenschaften im Islam, Leiden, 1972.
Originally Published: December 15, 2003
Last Updated: March 20, 2012
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