>Does anyone know where Ball got this quote? I seem to recall that it comes >from one of the later Roman writers, but I do not recall which one.
The library at Alexandria was burned in the fifth century. Muhammad was born in the seventh century CE. The library at Alexandria seems to have been burned by the Patriarch of Christianity who was affronted by "pagan" books. Ditto in Andalusia and Constantinople. The latter were libraries established and maintained by Muslims.
I am not aware of any book burnings by Muslims, who are directed by faith to venerate knowledge and truth from whatever source it may come. While the Qur'an is carefully preserved in its original form, other books are considered to be a threat.