Omar Khayyam Biography
Birthday: May 18, 1048 (Taurus)
Born In: Nishapur, Khorasan, Iran
Omar Khayyám was an extremely talented and famous Persian mathematician, astronomer, philosopher, and poet. It is believed that Omar adopted the name ‘Khayyám’ as a mark of respect for his father’s occupation. His work as an outstanding mathematician and astronomer led to the reform of the ancient Muslim calendar. Also, the theorems given by him are still applied in mathematics. Despite his work in mathematics and astronomy, Khayyam is best known for his poems. He is also known as the author of his collection of quatrains, the ‘Rubaiyat.’ Few know that he laid the foundation of modern algebra with his 1070 AD work, ‘Treatise on Demonstration of Problems of Algebra and Balancing.’ He also contributed to the development of non-Euclidean geometry. Reformation of the Persian solar calendar was another feather in his cap. The present-day Georgian calendar is partly based on his work. In addition, he also wrote numerous treatises on history, geography, mineralogy, mechanics, and music. He was also a great teacher as he taught mathematics and philosophy of Avicenna in the last decades of his life. Although he was a poet, he never published the ‘rubais’ that he wrote. Discovered after his death, the ‘rubais’ remained neglected until Edward Fitzgerald translated them to English, seven centuries after Khayyam’s death.