Yuhanna bin Masaweh

(d. 875 AD)

A physician in Baghdad during the early
Abbasid period, he was rector of Dar Al Hikma (House of Wisdom) which was established by the Caliph al-Ma’moun.in 832AD. Dar al Hikma was the repository of Greek, Syriac and Byzantine books of philosophy and medicine.

Bin Masaweh was the personal physician for the Caliph Haroun al-Rashid. Hashemite rulers had him stand by the table when they ate as he provided them with digestive preparations.

He wrote the first book on epilepsy, and pioneered the translation of Greek medical books into Arabic. He translated 30 books including one on headache.

He was the mentor of another famed physician,
 Hunayn Ibn Ishaq, though he dismissed him in frustration for asking too many questions.

References: Haddad,S.I. History of Arab Medicine,1975.; Al-Kurdi, A, et al. Neuroscience 9:1,2004; Al-Mahi,T. History of Arab Medicine,1959