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History: Jabir Ibn Hayyan - Research Paper Example

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Jabir ibn hayyan Abu Musa Jabir Ibn Hayyan, also known as Geber, was born in 721 c. in Tus, Persia and died in 815 c. in Kufa, Iraq. He was a well-known alchemist and is also known as the father of chemistry. BACKGROUND Jabir was the son of Hayyan-al-Azdi, a pharmacist and was born during the Umayyad caliphate…
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Download file to see previous pages After Jabir completed his education, he started practicing medicine under the patronage of Caliph Haroun Al-Rashid. Some historians say that it was his loyalty to the caliph that led to his death once the caliph was dethroned. Geber’s contribution to the world of chemistry The contribution of Islamic scholars to the world of chemistry is recognized throughout the world. While keeping the basic Aristotelian principles in mind and using the core framework of Greek alchemy, they tried to transfigure various metals to form gold and produce elixir. Not only that, they managed to make discoveries, which were of great use to the modern day realm of chemistry. And one of these great alchemists was Jabir Ibn Hayyan. Jabir was a deeply religious man. He attributed all his successes and discoveries to the will of God. He strongly believed that without God’s will he could attain nothing , and that one must completely give one self over to God , before one can delve into the depths of chemistry. In one of his books, the book of stones, he is said to have prescribed a series of lengthy and intricate prayers which one must offer before starting even thinking of stepping into the field of alchemy and chemistry (Aslam). Jabir Ibn hayyan strongly believed in conducting experiments and observing things practically rather than making theories. Before Jabir’s experimental evidences and proofs, all chemistry consisted of was theoretical work and discussions. Jabir also believed in working slowly, following the course of nature and not hurrying onto forming conclusions (Haunty) Some of the modern day equipment used in lab experiments and industries such as the pipette, retort and test tubes is said to have been invented by Geber about a thousand years ago. One of the most basic theories of chemistry or the founding blocks of chemistry, the theory of sub-atomic particles such as atoms, discovered my Dalton in 1844, have been found in Geber’s research. He discussed that elements, that are too small for the naked eye to see on its own, combine together in a series of different chemical reactions. He is said to have refined the use of many chemical experiments used in the modern day lab, such as crystallization, distillation and sublimation. One of this greatest inventions include, the alembic, which made the process of distillation, simple yet methodical. Jabir laid great stress on accuracy and precision, and all his works are an example of the extent of exactness he used to follow. "He who performs not practical work nor makes experiments will never attain the least degree of mastery." "I recommend you to act slowly and with precaution, not to hurry, but to follow the example of nature." (hayyan) With the aid of these processes, he was able to isolate and identify carious types of acid. Such as: Hydrochloric acid, by heating sodium chloride(salt) and sulphuric acid, Nitric acid, by heating saltpeter with sulphuric acid, Concentrated acetic acid, from vinegar, Isolated citric acid from lemon and tartaric acid from wine residue, But the chemical, which turned out to be a major milestone behind Jabir’s success, was the super acid or aqua regia that could be used to dissolve gold. Aqua regia is formed via the chemical reaction of hydrochloric and nitric acid. This substance helped people extract and purify metals, ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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