, caliph of Bagdat, a philosopher and astronomer in the beginning of
, caliph of Bagdat, a philosopher and astronomer in the beginning of the ninth century, ascended the throne in the year 814. He was the son of Harun-AlRashid, and the grandson of Almanzor. His name is otherwise written Mamon, Almaon, Almamun, Alamoun, or Al-Maimon. Having been educated with great care, and with a love for the liberal sciences, he applied himself to cultivate and encourage them in his own country. For this purpose he requested the Greek emperors to supply him with such books on philosophy as they had among them; and he collected skilful interpreters to translate them into the Arabic language. He also encouraged his subjects to study them; frequenting the meetings of the learned, and assisting in their exercises and deliberations. He caused Ptolemy’s Almagest to be translated in the year 827; and in his reign, and doubtless by his encouragement, an astronomer of Bagdat, named Habash, composed three sets of astronomical tables. Almamon himself, however, made many astronomical observations, concerning the obliquity of the ecliptic, and caused skilful observers to procure proper instruments to be made, and to exercise themselves in such observations. Under his auspices also a degree of the meridian was measured; and he revived the sciences in the East so successfully that many learned men were found, not only in his own time, but after him, in a country where the study of the sciences had long been forgotten. This learned king died near Tarsus in Cilicia, by having eaten too freely of dates, on his return from a military expedition, in the year 833, in the 48th or 49th year of his age.