Passive: +20 HP healing for the player's units within 1 tile.
Al-Zahrawi is a Great Scientist wholly unlike most that are able to be recruited. His ability is essentially that of an immortal, maintenance-free Medic three eras early, which allows him to act similarly as a strong accessory to conquest. He is especially strong alongside units that already have methods of healing themselves, such as Mamluks or Toa. In the Secret Societies mode, the Vampire can also benefit greatly from the extra healing, as it offsets their own reduced healing. It is definitely worth trying to recruit Al-Zahrawi if you're heading for a Domination Victory.
Around 936 AD, Abu al-Qasim Khalaf ibn al-Abbas al-Zahrawi was born in the town of El-Zahra, a few miles northwest of Cordoba, in Islamic al-Andalus. Under the Umayyad Caliphate, it was a golden age of learning and stability, al-Andalus a place where Muslims, Jews, and Christians lived in harmony, scientific advances were made without fear, and prosperity and tolerance was the rule rather than the exception. It was the ideal environment for the greatest surgeon in civilization to flourish.
While little is known of his youth, he was trained as a physician; his fame quickly spread such that he was appointed court physician by Caliph al-Hakim III, a post he supposedly held for 50 years (al-Zahrawi died in 1013). Unlike doctors today, al-Zahrawi insisted on seeing all who came as patients, regardless of their financial status – a quirk the caliph allowed him to indulge. Thus, al-Zahrawi saw a variety of illnesses and injuries, could experiment with treatments, and could record in meticulous detail his observations. Towards the end of his life, he compiled these into a 30-volume encyclopedia of medicine, the 'Al-Tasrif li man ajaz an-il-talif' (“An Aid for Those Who Lack the Capacity to Read Big Books”).
Copies of the 'Al-Tasrif' made their way from Moorish Spain across the Muslim and Christian worlds, to even the corners where healing was still considered witchcraft and people simply didn’t cut other people open (except in war, naturally). Over the course of the next century, it was translated into Latin and dozens of other languages. From the 1100s onward, it was the standard medical text throughout the civilized world … and was still being reprinted and used as late as the 1770s.