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Al-Masʿūdī composed his Kitāb al-Tanbīh wal-ishrāf in the years 955 and 956, finishing it not long before his death. Based in part on earlier historical-geographical works, it offers a description of astronomical and meteorological phenomena, the divisions of the earth, the seas, ancient nations, universal chronology, and then the history of Islam until the caliphate of al-Muṭīʿ (r. 946-74).

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