From: Thomas Hockey et al. (eds.). The Biographical Encyclopedia of Astronomers, Springer Reference. New York: Springer, 2007, p. 315

Courtesy of

Dunash ibn Tamim

Y. Tzvi Langermann

FlourishedQayrawān, (Tunisia), first half of the 10th century

Dunash ibn Tamim is not known to have undertaken any original astronomical research. However, he did write on the subject, and two of his treatises are extant. His monograph on the armillary sphere survives in a single manuscript in Istanbul (Ayasofya MS 4861). A partial study was published by Stern (1956). Dunash also wrote a commentary on Sefer Yeira (The book of creation). Like the rest of his contemporaries, he interpreted laconic and elusive Hebrew treatise as a book on science; consequently, his commentary conveys some basic astronomical knowledge. Dunash's commentary was widely circulated, both in the original Arabic and in Hebrew translations; hence it may have played no small role in the dissemination of some elementary astronomy within the Jewish communities of the Mediterranean basin.

Selected References

Jospe, R. (1990). “Early Philosophical Commentaries to Sefer Yesirah: Some Comments.” Revue des études juives 149: 369–415. (Places Dunash's commentary in context, although the content is hardly discussed.)

Stern, S. M. (1956). “A Treatise on the Armillary Sphere by Dunas ibn Tamīm.” In Homenaje a Millás‐Vallicrosa. Vol. 2, pp. 373–382. Barcelona: Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas. (Facsimile and translation of first 16 ff. of Istanbul, Ayasofya MS. 4861.)