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De Gradibus


De Gradibus

De Gradibus was an Arabic book published by the Arab physician Al-Kindi (c. 801–873 CE). De gradibus is the Latinized name of the book. An alternative name for the book was Quia Primos.[1]

In De Gradibus, Al-Kindi attempts to apply mathematics to pharmacology by quantifying the strength of drugs. According to Prioreschi, this was the first attempt at serious quantification in medicine.[2] He also developed a system, based on the phases of the Moon, that would allow a doctor to determine in advance the most critical days of a patient's illness.[3] During the Arabic-Latin translation movement of the 12th century, De Gradibus was translated into Latin by Gerard of Cremona.[1] Al-Kindi's mathematical reasoning was complex and hard to follow; Roger Bacon commented that his method of computing the strength of a drug was extremely difficult to use.[2]


  1. ^ a b p. 19, "Al-Kindi, A Precursor Of The Scientific Revolution", Plinio Prioreschi, Journal of the International Society for the History of Islamic Medicine 1, #2 (October 2002), pp. 17–19.
  2. ^ a b p. 18, Prioreschi 2002.
  3. ^ (incomplete citation) Klein-Franke, p. 172
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