Tag Archives: Anderson

F. Jamil Ragep to Deliver “Medieval Cosmologies” Lecture

The Medieval Cosmologies Working Group is pleased to announce the visit of F. Jamil Ragep, Canada Research Chair in the History of Science in Islamic Societies at McGill University. Professor Ragep will deliver a public lecture on Thursday, November 21st, at 4:30 PM in Goldwin Smith G22:

“The Astronomical Genre of Hayʾa: Cosmology without Philosophy?”

In the early history of Islamic astronomy, there arose a subdivision called hayʾa, which more than likely had its inspiration from Ptolemy’s cosmological work called the Planetary Hypotheses. But over time this genre took on a life of its own, eventually becoming the umbrella term for all astronomy and ostentatiously excluding astrology from its domain. It also became the locus for attempts to reform the Ptolemaic system and a contender to be the Islamic cosmology on religious grounds, something occasionally opposed on religious grounds as well. The story of hayʾa—its genesis, evolution, and relationship with philosophical cosmology—will be the subject of this talk.

On Friday the 22nd at 1:25, working group members are invited to join the seminar on medieval cosmologies in Goldwin Smith G19 for further discussion with the lecturer (1:25-3:00). Those planning to attend may contact Andrew Hicks (ajh299@cornell.edu) for copies of the readings.

F. Jamil Ragep’s visit is made possible by the generous support of the Cornell Institute of European Studies Luigi Einaudi Chair Innovation Fund and the Department of Near Eastern Studies.

For more information on the working group:


Benjamin Anderson, Andrew Hicks, and Courtney Roby Launch Medieval Cosmology Collaboration

The arrival at Cornell of three medieval cosmology scholars in the last three years has created a rare density of expertise in the topic, and they have launched a collaboration to take a closer, interdisciplinary look at complex cosmologies and the medieval reception of ancient science. Read more here.