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The Central Asian Role in the Making of Modern European Science: A Review of Warriors of the Cloisters: The Central Asian Origins of Science in the Medieval World, by Christopher Beckwith (Princeton University Press, 2012)

  • Author(s): Saliba, George
  • et al.
Abstract

At first glance, Christopher Beckwith’s Warriors of the Cloisters: The Central Asian Origins of Science in the Medieval World is rather straightforward. It attempts to argue that the origins of modern science are to be found in the Middle Ages, and those origins, in turn, can be traced back to Islamic civilization, which was in direct, intimate contact with Latin Europe during the same medieval period. That much is rather well-known and heavily documented. But Beckwith goes a step further. He now claims in this book that the essential components of what he calls “full scientific culture” (p.120) should themselves be sought in ancient Buddhist texts of pre-Islamic Central Asia.

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