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abbas


In 875 CE, at the age of 65, 'Abbās ibn Firnās tried to fly. Using a hang-glider made of feathers and wood that he built after hours of observing birds in flight, he leapt off the roof of the Rusāfa palace in Cordoba. By all accounts, he flew for several minutes, gliding on the air currents like a raptor! He is known as "the first man to ever fly", but other than that, he also designed a water clock. He devised means of manufacturing glass, and he developed a chain of rings that could be used to display the motions of the planets and stars. He also devoloped a process for cutting rock crystal. Thereafter, Spain no longer needed to export quarts to Egypt, but could finish it at home. 'Abbās Ibn Firnās was an Andalusi polymath, an inventor, astronomer, physician, chemist, engineer and an Arabic-language poet. You probably may have heard about the Wright brothers inventing the first motorized flying plane but truth is that centuries before them, this Muslim individual man invented it. #KnowYourHistory

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