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List of Spanish inventions and discoveries

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List of Spanish inventions and discoveries

The following list is composed of items, techniques and processes that were invented by or discovered by people from Spain.

Spain was an important center of knowledge during the medieval era. While most of western and southern Europe suffered from the collapse of the Roman Empire, although declining, some regions of the former empire, Hispania (the Iberian Peninsula), southern Italy, and the remainder of the Eastern Roman Empire or Byzantine Empire, did not to suffer from the full impact of the so-called Dark Ages when education collapsed with the collapse of the empire and most knowledge was lost. When Hispania and southern Italy were conquered by the Muslims, a new era of intellectual energy began in these regions driven by a belief of educated Muslims that viewed rationality and knowledge as a form of worship of Allah (God) because, as they saw it, by unlocking the mysteries of the universe we realize God's greatness and complexity. Islam had initially started out as a barbaric religion fighting jihad after jihad in its attempt to convert the masses to the teachings of Mohamed. These barbaric conquests were begun by the very prophet and founder of Islam himself. However, as the Muslims conquered the fertile crescent region and Iran, they began to discover the importance of knowledge. Conquests continued all the way to Hispania in the west and as far as India, the Philippines and Indonesia in the east, giving Muslims access to knowledge from many cultures, which they translated into Arabic and recorded in books for the use of their own scholars and philosophers and educated elites, who flourished in this period. Much of this knowledge was later translated by Christian and Jewish scholars in medieval Spain from Arabic into Latin and was spread through Europe.

Contents

  • Inventions from the Golden Age of Al Andalus 1
  • Architecture and Construction 2
  • Chemistry 3
  • Computing and Communications 4
  • Cuisine 5
  • Economics 6
  • Fashion 7
  • Mathematics 8
  • Medicine and Biology 9
  • Meteorology 10
  • Military 11
  • Musical Instruments 12
  • Sociology, Philosophy and politics 13
  • Religion and Ethics 14
  • Transportation 15
  • Physics and Astronomy 16
  • Miscellaneous 17
  • See also 18
  • References 19

Inventions from the Golden Age of Al Andalus

  • Alcohol distillation
  • Animal Testing, first recorded use of animals for medical testing was done by Ibn Zuhr, known as Avenzoar, (1094-1162).
  • Antiseptics were in used as early as the 10th century in hospitals in Islamic Spain. Special protocols, in Al Andalus, were used to keep hygiene before and after surgery.
  • Botany, Spanish botanist, like Ibn al-Baitar, created hundreds of works/catalogs on the various plants in not only Europe but the Middle East, Africa and Asia. In these works many processes for extracting essential oils, drugs as well as their uses can be found.
  • Brass type movable printer press/first printing device in Europe, first invented in Muslim Spain 100 years prior to the invention of printing press, by Johannes Gutenburg of Germany, in 1454.
  • Ectopic pregnancy - first described by Al-Zahrawi (936–1013 AD).
  • Eye glasses, first invented by Ibn Firnas in the 9th century. [1]
  • Glass mirrors, used in Islamic Spain as early as 11th century - 200 years prior to the Venetians.
  • Inheritance of traits first proposed by Abu Al-Zahrawi (936–1013 AD) more than 800 years before Austrian monk, Mendel. Al-Zahrawi was first to record and suggest that hemophilia was an inherited disease.
  • Invention and design of first flying machine, by Ibn Firnas during the 9th century, about 800 years before Leonardo da Vinci. Firnas was said to have tested his machine from the top of the tallest minaret in Cordoba.[1]
  • Inhalation anesthesia, invented by al-Zahrawi and Ibn Zuhr. Used a sponge soaked with narcotic drugs and placed it on patients face.
  • Ligatures, described in the work of al-Zarawi (936-1013 AD), Kitab al-Tasrif, one of the most influential books in early modern medicine. Describes the process of performing a ligature on blood vessels.
  • Metronome, invented by Ibn Firnas (9th century)
  • Mercuric oxide, first synthesized by Abu al-Qasim al-Qurtubi al-Majriti (10th century).
  • Migraine surgery, first performed by al-Zahrawi (936–1013 AD).
  • Modern surgery. Abu al-Qasim al-Zahrawi (936–1013 AD), better known in the west as Albucasis, is regarded as the father of modern surgery and is the most quoted surgeon of all times. Albucasis invented over 200 tools for use in surgery - many still in use today.
  • Pathology - various Muslim physicians in Spain were crucial in the development of modern medicine. Pathology, obviously was an important development in medicine. The first correct proposal of the nature of disease was described by al-Zahrawi and Ibn Zuhr.
  • Pharmacopoeia (book of medicine). During the 14th century, the physician from Malaga, Ibn Baytar, wrote a pharmacopoeia naming over 1400 different drugs and their uses in medicine. This book was written 200years before the supposed first pharmacopoeia was written by German scholar in 1542.
  • Speed of sound, was proposed by physicist from Cordoba, Ibn Hazm (994-1064 AD). Ibn Hazm argued and calculated the speed of sound by echoes in the Mosque of Cordoba. He is also credited as being the first to propose that thunder was a production of lightening.
  • Spherical Earth Theory by Ibn Hazm (994-1064 AD).
  • Water and weight driven mechanical clocks, by Spanish Muslim engineers sometime between 900-1200 AD. According to historian Will Durant, a watch like device was invented by Ibn Firnas.


Architecture and Construction

Chemistry

Computing and Communications

Cuisine

  • Chocolate caliente (hot chocolate) - the mesoamericans drank chocolate strait bitter and sometimes flavored with spicy peppers. Spanish conquistadors were not fans of the original mix and instead created their own sweeten hot chocolate by adding sugar from sugar cane. For many years, the Spanish kept their prized chocolate a secret for many years until its expansion into other European courts.
  • Chorizo
  • Jamón ibérico
  • Spanish omelette
  • Jerez - also known as Sherry
  • Paella
  • Spanish cuisine

Economics

  • First world currency

Fashion

Spain has been a center of fashion since medieval times. Barcelona and Madrid have both been named as fashion capitals of the world, with Barcelona being the fifth most important fashion capital in the world back in 2015. Spain is the home country of the largest fashion retail store and textiles designer in the world, Zara and its parent Inditex, making their CEO main shareholder, Amancio Ortega Gaona, the second wealthiest man in the world in 2015.

Inventions:

Mathematics

  • Dynamical Systems by Ricardo Pérez-Marco
  • Nualart stochastic processes and stochastic analysis (field of probability theory).
  • Speculative Arithmetic
  • Gregorian calendar - reforms from the Julian calendar to the Gregorian calendar by Spanish mathematician, Pedro Chacón.
  • Geostatistical Analysis of Compositional Data by Vera Pawlowsky-Glahn and Ricardo A. Olea[16]
  • Group Theory works done by María Josefa Wonenburger Planells (1927-2014).
  • Integral geometry by Luís Antoni Santaló Sors
  • Lie algebras works by María Josefa Wonenburger Planells (1927-2014).
  • Modelling and Analysis of Compositional Data by Vera Pawlowsky-Glahn, Juan José Egozcue, Raimon Tolosana-Delgado[17]
  • Nonlinear partial differential equations and their applications by Juan Luis Vázquez Suárez
  • Oscillation theory of the obliquity of the ecliptic by Abū Isḥāq Ibrāhīm ibn Yaḥyā al-Naqqāsh al-Zarqālī, also known as Al-Zarqali or Ibn Zarqala (1029–1087).
  • Probabilism - proto-statistics and probability. Some of the earliest works in statistics and probability are done by Spanish mathematicians in the school of Salamanca.
  • Spherical Trigonometry - work of Abū Abd Allāh Muḥammad ibn Muʿādh al-Jayyānī(989–1079AD). Greatly influenced Western mathematics, including the works of Regiomontanus.
  • Tirocinio aritmético by María Andrea Casamayor (1700–1780)
  • Works of Enrique Zuazua in Applied Mathematics in the fields of Partial Differential Equations, Control Theory and Numerical Analysis

Medicine and Biology

Drawing by Santiago Ramón y Cajal (1899) of neurons in the pigeon cerebellum
  • Ligatures, described in the work of al-Zarawi (936-1013 AD), Kitab al-Tasrif, one of the most influential books in early modern medicine. Describes the process of performing a ligature on blood vessels.
  • Migraine surgery, first performed by al-Zahrawi (936–1013 AD).
  • Modern surgery. Abu al-Qasim al-Zahrawi (936–1013 AD), better known in the west as Albucasis, is regarded as the father of modern surgery and is the most quoted surgeon of all times. Albucasis invented over 200 tools for use in surgery - many still in use today.
  • Nuubo - Wearable medical technology that measures heart rate, blood pressure, perspiration, body temperature and current location.
  • Pathology - various Muslim physicians in Spain were crucial in the development of modern medicine. Pathology, obviously was an important development in medicine. The first correct proposal of the nature of disease was described by al-Zahrawi and Ibn Zuhr.
  • Pharmacopoeia (book of medicine). During the 14th century, the physician from Malaga, Ibn Baytar, wrote a pharmacopoeia naming over 1400 different drugs and their uses in medicine. This book was written 200years before the supposed first pharmacopoeia was written by German scholar in 1542.
  • Silver bromide method.
  • wheelchair - was first invented for the use of the most powerful man in the world at the time, King Phillip II of Spain, who was suffering from gout.

Meteorology

Military

  • Use of aggressive dogs in warfare
  • First professional army in Europe - men were hired and trained in Spain to join the army as their professional job not as some levy or through hiring mercenaries
  • Falcata swords used by Iberian tribes.
  • Gladius Hispanensis (antennae swords) - Swords adopted by the Romans after the second Punic sword. The Iberian sword was considered superior to that of the Romans.
  • Guerrilla warfare developed in Spain during the Napoleonic invasion of the Iberian peninsula.
  • Molotov cocktails were first developed in Spain during the Spanish civil war and were ordered to be used by the Nationalist forces against Soviet T-26 tanks supporting the Spanish Republic.
  • Tercios greatly modernized fighting in Europe. It is seen by military historians as one of the great developments of combined arms and tactics for warfare. The Spanish Tercios were undefeated in every war until Battle of Rocroi in 1642 and were greatly feared as an invincible army.
  • Toledo steel - The Iberian region has been known for high quality metal working and sword productions since pre-Roman times. Toledo steel refers to both the high quality steel and that legacy of steel work in the Iberian peninsula from pre-Roman to post-Roman times in the Middle Ages. Damascus steel was said to be the only rival of Toledo steel in the Middle Ages.

Musical Instruments

Sociology, Philosophy and politics

  • Anarcho-syndicalism
  • Averroism - the school of philosophy founded by Al-Andalus philosopher Averroes. Averroes in one of the most quoted men of the medieval era and has greatly influenced Western Europe.
  • Balance of Powers
  • Expropriative anarchism
  • International Law - According to the main argument agreed at Salamance, the common good of the world is of a category superior to the good of each state. This meant that relations between states ought to pass from being justified by force to being justified by law and justice. Hence calling for international law.
  • Justification of war - argued greatly in the School of Salamanca. The main argument was given that war is one of the worst evils suffered by mankind, the adherents of the School reasoned that it ought to be resorted to only when it was necessary in order to prevent an even greater evil. A diplomatic agreement is preferable, even for the more powerful party, before a war is started. Even war for the conversion of pagans and infidels was considered unjust at the school of Salamanca.
  • Maimonides
  • Razon Historica
  • Raciovitalismo
  • Rights of People - Francisco de Vitoria is the first western European to argue for the rights of man and is considered the father of modern rights of people theory. His most famous work is Ius Gentium (Latin for The Rights of People)
  • Stoicism - Some of the most important stoic philosophical works are by Iberian born or descendent philosophers including the works of Seneca the younger, born in Cordoba, as well as the stoic masterpiece, Meditations, by Roman emperor, Marcus Aurelius, born in Rome but who's family originate in Ucubi, Spain (small town close to Cordoba).
  • Second Scholasticism - Francisco Suarez is considered the most important European scholastic after Thomas Aquinas.
  • School of Salamanca Movement - greatly intertwined with second scholasticism, but it was the rise in philosophical works on politics, ethics, religion, society and human rights. As we know, our modern concept of human rights, equality and liberty originate in the enlightenment revolutions, especially in France and US, however, about 300-200 years before the enlightenment, the great scholars of the University of Salamanca were writing and discussing the same ideas. The ideas of international law, balance of powers, civil law, order, and just war were all discussed and debated by these Spanish scholars. Francisco Suarez is the most famous Salamancan scholar of this era. Is considered the most important European scholastic after Thomas Aquinas
  • Works of Francisco Suarez

Religion and Ethics

Although some may argue that there is no justification for religion in these types of lists, it is not doubted that religion and its ethics have influenced the way we live and continue in our development, whether it may be science or any other form. Spain, in particular, has shaped the religious and ethical views of various around the world and to the surprise of many westerners, in more ways than Catholicism alone.

  • La convivencia - the belief that all people of the book, those who are an Abrahamic faith, are to be allowed to worship freely.
  • Jesuits - officially known as the Society of Jesus, is one of the most, if not the most, powerful Christian/Catholic order. The Jesuit order was founded by Ignatius of Loyola and Francis Xavier on September 27th, 1540. The Jesuit order was greatly responsible for the mass conversions of heathens to Catholicism throughout the Spanish Empire and beyond. They have greatly influenced global society on every continent in more ways than just religion but also the sciences and philosophy. Many of oldest universities in Asia and the Americas were founded by Jesuits.
  • Kabbalism - spiritual philosophy on the enlightenment of the soul, connecting to God. Has greatly influenced Western and Jewish mysticism and religions, especially modern New Age religions.
  • Magic squares oldest ones in Europe are found in Spain by at least 1283AD, in the Biblioteca Vaticana (cod. Reg. Lat. 1283a), however, probably date much early to around 900-1000AD. They are of religious importance but if anything a mathematical curiosity.
  • Opus dei - a catholic order that has encourage austere and ascetic life for Catholics.
  • Palmarian Catholic Church
  • Sephardism - the culture of Spanish Jews. The great achievements of Sephardic (Spanish) Jews in literature, art, philosophy and the sciences in the middle ages has been considered the Golden Age of Judaism in general and has influenced the world. The achievements, alongside their Christian and Muslim brothers helped Europe free itself from the Dark Ages through their works and ancient works translated to Latin.
  • Spanish Alchemy - a touchy topic as it is partly science and partly religious, but has influenced our spiritual and scientific beliefs. Spain was one of the five great centers of alchemy alongside Egypt, Greece, India and China. Spanish/moorish alchemist greatly influenced medieval and renaissance scientist, including Newton, and captivated the minds of poets and authors.
  • Works of Maimonides

Transportation

Pitcairn PCA-2 autogyro, build in the U.S. under Cierva license, 1961.
  • First flying/gliding machine by Ibn Firnas. 500 years before Leonardo was even born, Ibn Firnas designed, built and tested his own flying machine using it to fly from the tallest minaret in Cordoba, Spain. Ibn Firnas reportedly flew but then had trouble landing and crashed. Luckily the great man did not die and went off to build the first planetarium. Some say there was a second attempt off of the tallest cliff in the vicinity of Cordoba. In the writings of Ibn Firnas we know that after his failed landing he was able to come up with a better design for landing and greater control - by inventing the tail, like planes and helicopters today.
  • The parachute by Armen Firman. Scholars and historians are not yet sure if Arment Firman is a Latinized Ibn Firnas, regardless, sources suggest that Ibn Firnas was inspired to build his glider after the parachute invention. It may be that it was an earlier attempt of Ibn Firnas to fly since the parachute was accidentally invented when the garments of the wings of Armen Firman slowed his fall after jumping to where he only suffered minor injuries.
  • Aerial tramway designed by Spanish engineer, Leonardo Torres y Quevedo. It was Manufactured by J. Enoch Thompson, and built in 1913 by the Spanish company The Niagara Spanish Aerocar Co. Limited. The first aerial tram was opened in August 1916, and has since been updated in 1961, 1967 and 1984. She continues in operation as a tourist attraction.

Physics and Astronomy

  • Electric Universe Theory
  • Equatorium
  • The first telescope was invented by Catalan spectacle maker, Juan Roget, before the Dutch inventor Hans Lipperhey according to Catalan historian, Simon de Gualleuma, and British historian, Nick Pelling.
  • Theoretical work on Gravity by Juan Bautista Villalpando ( born 1552 in Córdoba, died 22 May 1608). He may be the father of gravitational theory and influence Newton, who indeed had copies of Buatista's work on gravity, geometry and architecture. Baustista produced 21 original propositions on the center of gravity and the line of direction.
  • First full-pressured astronaut suit, called the escafandra estratonáutica, designed and made by Emilio Herrera Linares, in 1935. The Russians then used a model of Herrera's suit when first flying into space of which the Americans would then later adopt when creating their own space program.
  • speed of sound, was proposed by physicist from Cordoba, Ibn Hazm (994-1064 AD). Ibn Hazm argued and calculated the speed of sound by echoes in the Mosque of Cordoba. He is also credited as being the first to propose that thunder was a production of lightening.
  • Spherical Earth Theory by Ibn Hazm (994-1064 AD).
  • Viscoelastic gravity layer
  • Water and weight driven mechanical clocks, by Spanish Muslim engineers sometime between 900-1200 AD. According to historian Will Durant, a watch like device was invented by Ibn Firnas.

Miscellaneous

  • Modern rules of chess. Although chess has its origins in India, the modern rules of chess have their origin Spain. It is still under debate whether the rules were invented in the Islamic period or when the Christians took Toledo.
  • El Ajedrecista, invention of the automatic chess by engineer and mathematician Leonardo Torres y Quevedo (1852–1936) [35]
  • The mop (1956) by Manuel Jalón Corominas (1925–2011).[22]
  • The first stapler, designed and created in the Basque country of Spain for French King, Louis XV, in the 18th century. The staples had engraved on them the royal emblem.
  • First cigarette. The mesoamericans, like the Mayans and Aztecs smoked tobacco by using different leaves as rolling paper, the Spanish were the first to manufacture the grandfather of the modern day cigarette. When tobacco first made it onto Spanish shores in the 17th century, maize wrappers were used to roll and then fine paper.
  • The oldest folding/pocket knife have been found during the iron age (pre-Roman times)in Spain. The title is contested with folding knives found in Hallstatt culture region in Austria from around the same time.
  • Foosball. The first patent for table football belonged to Spaniard, Alejandro Finisterre, though he credits his friend, Francisco Javier Altuna, with the invention.
  • Glass mirrors, used in Islamic Spain as early as 11th century - 200 years prior to the Venetians.
  • Lollipops were first invented by Enric Bernat Fontlladosa between 1956 and 1957.
  • The sharpener created in 1945 by Ignacio Urresti.


See also

References

  1. ^ a b http://aboutibnfirnas.weebly.com/all-about-firnas.html
  2. ^ The new model of the hydraulic machine known as El Artificio de Juanelo in three-dimensional computer simulation
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^ D. Campbell, Arabian Medicine and Its Influence on the Middle Ages, p. 5.
  9. ^ http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-16101495
  10. ^ http://guardianlv.com/2013/09/self-healing-polymers-will-soon-be-invading-your-household/
  11. ^
  12. ^
  13. ^ Gaceta de la Actualidad Técnica. Year II, No. 14, September 1955
  14. ^ Giraud, Bibli. Sacr., II 334-336 (gives list of his writings)
  15. ^
  16. ^ https://global.oup.com/academic/product/geostatistical-analysis-of-compositional-data-9780195171662?cc=us&lang=en&
  17. ^ https://books.google.co.in/books/about/Modelling_and_Analysis_of_Compositional.html?id=tU28ngEACAAJ&hl=en
  18. ^
  19. ^
  20. ^
  21. ^ 2011 “The love for truth. Life and work of Michael Servetus”, (El amor a la verdad. Vida y obra de Miguel Servet.), printed by Navarro y Navarro, Zaragoza, collaboration with the Government of Navarra, Department of Institutional Relations and Education of the Government of Navarra, 607 pp, 64 of them illustrations, p 215-228 & 62nd illustration (XLVII)
  22. ^ a b The man who got Spanish women off their knees has died
  23. ^ (Spanish)manuel jalon inventor fregona
  24. ^ Spanish National Library - La Esfera, December 28, 1918
  25. ^
  26. ^ Walsh, James J. Science in the Philippines, New York.
  27. ^ Warren, James Francis (2009). "Scientific Superman: Father José Algué, Jesuit Meteorology, and the Philippines under American Rule, 1897-1924." In Colonial Crucible: Empire in the Making of the Modern American State, Part VIII, University of Wisconsin Press.
  28. ^ Vector Flight
  29. ^
  30. ^ Cargill Hall, R. (1986). History of rocketry and astronautics: proceedings of the third through the sixth History Symposia of the International Academy of Astronautics, Volumen 1. NASA conference publication. American Astronautical Society by Univelt, p. 85. ISBN 0-87703-260-2
  31. ^ A steam powered submarine: the Ictíneo Low-tech Magazine, 24 August 2008
  32. ^ Humble 1981, p. 174.
  33. ^ http://www.niagaraparks.com/niagara-falls-attractions/whirlpool-aero-car.html
  34. ^ http://www.livescience.com/51925-magnetic-wormhole-created.html
  35. ^ Torres and his remarkable automatic devices. Issue 2079 of Scientific American, 1915
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