Muslim inventions that shaped the modern world

“Hospitals as we know them today, with wards and teaching centers, come from 9th century Egypt.”

The Muslim Times

By Olivia Sterns for CNN
January 29, 2010 —
In 9th century Spain, Muslim inventor Abbas ibn Firnas designed a flying machine -- hundreds of years before da Vinci drew plans of his own.
In 9th century Spain, Muslim inventor Abbas ibn Firnas designed a flying machine — hundreds of years before da Vinci drew plans of his own.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Exhibition celebrates 1,000 years of “forgotten” Muslim heritage
  • From coffee to cranks, items we couldn’t live without today are Muslim inventions
  • Modern hospitals and universities both began in 9th century North Africa

London, England (CNN) — Think of the origins of that staple of modern life, the cup of coffee, and Italy often springs to mind.

But in fact, Yemen is where the ubiquitous brew has its true origins.

Along with the first university, and even the toothbrush, it is among surprising Muslim inventions that have shaped the world we live in today.

The origins of these fundamental ideas and objects — the basis of everything from the bicycle to musical scales — are…

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