Mathematician:Mathematicians/Sorted By Nation/Iran

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For more comprehensive information on the lives and works of mathematicians through the ages, see the MacTutor History of Mathematics archive, created by John J. O'Connor and Edmund F. Robertson.

The army of those who have made at least one definite contribution to mathematics as we know it soon becomes a mob as we look back over history; 6,000 or 8,000 names press forward for some word from us to preserve them from oblivion, and once the bolder leaders have been recognised it becomes largely a matter of arbitrary, illogical legislation to judge who of the clamouring multitude shall be permitted to survive and who be condemned to be forgotten.
-- Eric Temple Bell: Men of Mathematics, 1937, Victor Gollancz, London


Abu'l-Wafa Al-Buzjani $($$\text {940}$ – $\text {998}$$)$

Persian mathematician and astronomer who made important innovations in spherical trigonometry.

His work on arithmetic for businessmen contains the first instance of using negative numbers in a medieval Islamic text.

Credited with compiling the tables of sines and tangents at $15'$ intervals

Introduced the secant and cosecant functions, and studied the interrelations between the six trigonometric lines associated with an arc.

His Almagest was widely read by medieval Arabic astronomers in the centuries after his death. He is known to have written several other books that have not survived.

Assembled a translation and commentary on the Arithmetica of Diophantus.

Known for his study of geometrical dissections.

Pioneered the technique of geometrical construction using a rusty compass.
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Omar Khayyam $($$\text {1048}$ – $\text {1131}$$)$

Persian mathematician better known nowadays for his poetry.

Completely solved the problem of the solution of cubic equations using conics.

Noted for being one of the first to discuss in print what is now known as Pascal's Triangle.
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Nasir al-Din al-Tusi $($$\text {1201}$ – $\text {1274}$$)$

Multi-discipline scientist and prolific writer who pre-empted several later Western scientists:

  • Darwin with his ideas on evolution
  • Copernicus on his heliocentric view of the solar system
  • Galileo with his insight into the nature of the Milky Way.

Calculated the value of $51'$ for the precession of the equinoxes.

The first to separate the science of trigonometry, particularly spherical trigonometry, from that of astronomy.
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Jamshīd al-Kāshī $($$\text {c. 1380}$ – $\text {1429}$$)$

Prominent mathematician of the newly-founded Samarkand Institute.

Best known for calculating the value of pi ($\pi$) to $16$ decimal places.
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Maryam Mirzakhani $($$\text {1977}$ – $\text {2017}$$)$

Iranian mathematician notable for being the first female recipient of the Fields Medal.

Her research topics included Teichmüller theory, hyperbolic geometry, ergodic theory, and symplectic geometry.
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