29524541911 Encyclopædia Britannica, Volume 25 — SībawaihiGriffithes Wheeler Thatcher

SĪBAWAIHI [Abū Bishr, or Abū-l Ḥasan‛Amr ibn‛Uthmān ibn Qanbar, known as Sībawaihi or Sibūya] (c. 753–793), Arabian grammarian, was by origin a Persian and a freedman. Of his early years nothing is known. At the age of thirty-two he went to Baṣra, where he was a pupil of the celebrated grammarian Khalīl. Later he went to Bagdad, but soon left, owing to a dispute with the Kufan grammarian Kisā‛ī, and returned to Persia, where he died at the age of about forty. His great grammar of Arabic, known simply as The Book, is not only the earliest systematic presentation of Arabic grammar, but is recognized among Arabs as the most perfect. It is not always clear, but is very full and valuable for its many illustrations from the Koran and the poets.

The Book was published by H. Derenbourg (2 vols., Paris, 1881–1889), and a German translation, with extracts from the commentary of Sīrāfī (d. 978) and others, was published by G. Jahn (Berlin, 1895–1900).  (G. W. T.)