The Hebrew translations of Euclid's elements by moses ibn tibbon and by jacob ben makhir - A study of differences in book I

Ofer Elior*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study investigates differences between the Hebrew translation of Euclid's Elements made by Moses Ibn Tibbon and completed in 1270, and the Hebrew translation of the same work produced by Ibn Tibbon's nephew, Jacob ben Makhir, and completed in 1289. Focusing on Book I, the study shows that these differences extend to technical terms and make Ben Makhir's translation more accurate and more nuanced than Ibn Tibbon's. The greater accuracy of Ben Makhir's translation pertains also to his Hebrew formulations. Furthermore, apparent in his formulations is an attempt to make the Hebrew Elements more concise than the Arabic. On the basis of these findings, it is argued that Ben Makhir's translation is a reworking of Ibn Tibbon's, made with the aim of making the latter more succinct as well as more precise. A critical edition and an English translation of Ben Makhir's preface to his translation are presented in the Appendix.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)481-506
Number of pages26
JournalJournal of Semitic Studies
Volume64
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Oct 2019

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The author. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the University of Manchester. All rights reserved.

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