More Muslim Inventions

Here are more Muslim inventions that changed the world:

It is not clear whether quilting was invented in the Muslim world or imported from India or China. But it certainly came to the West via the Crusaders. They saw it used by Muslim warriors. It was an effective form of insulation - so much so that it became a cottage industry in colder climates such as Britain and Holland.

The pointed arch characteristic of Europe's Gothic cathedrals was an invention borrowed from Islamic architecture. It was much stronger than the rounded arch used by Romans and Normans, thus allowing bigger, higher, more complex and grander buildings. Other borrowings from Muslim genius include ribbed vaulting, rose windows and dome-building techniques. Europe's castles were also adapted to copy the Islamic world's; with arrow slits, battlements, a barbican and parapets. Square towers gave way to more easily defended round ones. Henry V's castle architect was a Muslim.

Ali ibn Nafi came from Iraq to Cordoba, Spain in the 9th century and brought the concept of the 3-course meal: soup, followed by fish or meat, then fruit and nuts. Europe learnt it from here.
Medieval Europe had herb gardens, but it was the Arabs who developed the idea of the garden as a place of beauty and meditation. The first royal pleasure gardens in Europe were opened in 11th-century Muslim Spain. Flowers which originated in Muslim gardens include the carnation and tulip.

By the 9th century, many Muslim scholars took it for granted that the Earth was a sphere. It was 500 years before that realisation dawned on Galileo. The calculations of Muslim astronomers were so accurate that in the 9th century they reckoned the Earth's circumference to be 40,253.4km - less than 200km out.