Ibn Majid, Ahmad

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Ibn Majid, Ahmad


Arab ship pilot and theoretician of navigation. He lived in the second half of the 15th century.

Ibn Majid was the son of a navigator. In 1498 he piloted the ships of Vasco da Gama from the eastern seacoast of Africa to Calcutta. He wrote about 40 works (mostly in verse) and a comprehensive summation of the theory and practice of Arab navigation based on extensive practical experience and the works of his predecessors. He described the routes by which Arab navigators conducted ships from Zanzibar and Madagascar to Taiwan and the distant islands of Indonesia. The experience of ibn Majid and other Arab navigators contributed greatly to the development of European navigation in the Indian Ocean.


Krachkovskii, I. lu. Arabskaia geograficheskaia literatura: Izbr. soch., vol. 4. Moscow-Leningrad, 1957.
Shumovskii, T. A. Tri neizvestnye lotsii Akhmada Ibn Madzhida. Moscow-Leningrad, 1957.
Shumovskii, T. A. Araby i more. Moscow, 1964.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.