By Cheryl Holmes,2014-01-23 09:26
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    Etext prepared by John Bickers, jbickers@ihug.co.nz and Dagny, dagnyj@hotmail.com





    First Published 1889 by Longmans, Green, and Co.

Camden Professor of Ancient History in the University of Oxford

    Canon of Canterbury

    Corresponding Member of the Royal Academy of Turin




    This Work

    His Last as Occupant of a Professorial Chair Is Dedicated

    As a Token of Respect and Gratitude

    By The


    Oct. 1



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     Greek text has been transliterated within brackets "{}" using an

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     been lost. Phœnician or other Semitic text has been replaced with

     an ellipsis in brackets, i.e. "{...}".

     The numerous sketches and maps in the original have also been



Histories of Phœnicia or of the Phœnicians were written towards the

    middle of the present century by Movers and Kenrick. The elaborate work of the former writer[1] collected into five moderate-sized volumes all the notices that classical antiquity had preserved of the Religion, History, Commerce, Art, &c., of this celebrated and interesting nation. Kenrick, making a free use of the stores of knowledge thus accumulated, added to them much information derived from modern research, and was content to give to the world in a single volume of small size,[2] very scantily illustrated, the ascertained results of criticism and inquiry on the subject of the Phœnicians up

    to his own day. Forty-four years have since elapsed; and in the course of them large additions have been made to certain branches of the inquiry, while others have remained very much as they were before. Travellers, like Robinson, Walpole, Tristram, Renan, and Lortet, have thrown great additional light on the geography, geology, fauna, and flora of the country. Excavators, like Renan and the two Di Cesnolas, have caused the soil to yield up most valuable remains bearing upon the architecture, the art, the industrial pursuits, and the manners and customs of the people. Antiquaries, like M. Clermont-Ganneau and MM. Perrot and Chipiez, have subjected the remains to careful examination and criticism, and have definitively fixed the character

    of Phœnician Art, and its position in the history of artistic effort. Researches are still being carried on, both in Phœnicia Proper and in

    the Phœnician dependency of Cyprus, which are likely still further to

    enlarge our knowledge with respect to Phœnician Art and Archæology;

    but it is not probable that they will affect seriously the verdict already delivered by competent judges on those subjects. The time therefore appeared to the author to have come when, after nearly half a century of silence, the history of the people might appropriately be

    rewritten. The subject had long engaged his thoughts, closely connected as it is with the histories of Egypt, and of the "Great Oriental Monarchies," which for thirty years have been to him special objects of study; and a work embodying the chief results of the recent investigations seemed to him a not unsuitable termination to the historical efforts which his resignation of the Professorship of Ancient History at Oxford, and his entrance upon a new sphere of labour, bring naturally to an end.

    The author wishes to express his vast obligations to MM. Perrot and Chipiez for the invaluable assistance which he has derived from their great work,[3] and to their publishers, the MM. Hachette, for their liberality in allowing him the use of so large a number of MM. Perrot and Chipiez' Illustrations. He is also much beholden to the same gentlemen for the use of charts and drawings originally published in the "Géographie Universelle." Other works from which he has drawn either materials or illustrations, or both, are (besides Movers' and Kenrick's) M. Ernest Renan's "Mission de Phénicie," General Di Cesnola's "Cyprus," A. Di Cesnola's "Salaminia," M. Ceccaldi's "Monuments Antiques de Cypre," M. Daux's "Recherches sur les Emporia Phéniciens," the "Corpus Inscriptionum Semiticarum," M. Clermont- Ganneau's "Imagerie Phénicienne," Mr. Davis's "Carthage and her Remains," Gesenius's "Scripturæ Linguæque Phœniciæ Monumenta,"

    Lortet's "La Syrie d'aujourd'hui," Serra di Falco's "Antichità della Sicilia," Walpole's "Ansayrii," and Canon Tristram's "Land of Israel." The difficulty has been to select from these copious stores the most salient and noteworthy facts, and to marshal them in such a form as would make them readily intelligible to the ordinary English reader. How far he has succeeded in doing this he must leave the public to judge. In making his bow to them as a "Reader" and Writer "of Histories,"[4] he has to thank them for a degree of favour which has given a ready sale to all his previous works, and has carried some of them through several editions.

CANTERBURY: August 1889.




     Phœnicia--Origin of the name--Spread of the name southwards--Real

     length of Phœnicia along the coast--Breadth and area--General

     character of the region--The Plains--Plain of Sharon--Plain of

     Acre--Plain of Tyre--Plain of Sidon--Plain of Berytus--Plain of

     Marathus--Hilly regions--Mountain ranges--Carmel--Casius--Bargylus

     --Lebanon--Beauty of Lebanon--Rivers--The Litany--The Nahr-el-

     Berid--The Kadisha--The Adonis--The Lycus--The Tamyras--The

     Bostrenus--The Zaherany--The Headlands--Main characteristics,

     inaccessibility, picturesqueness, productiveness.

Phœnicé, or Phœnicia, was the name originally given by the Greeks--and

    afterwards adopted from them by the Romans--to the coast region of the Mediterranean, where it faces the west between the thirty-second and the thirty-sixth parallels. Here, it would seem, in their early voyagings, the Pre-Homeric Greeks first came upon a land where the palm-tree was not only indigenous, but formed a leading and striking characteristic, everywhere along the low sandy shore lifting its tuft of feathery leaves into the bright blue sky, high above the undergrowth of fig, and pomegranate, and alive. Hence they called the tract Phœnicia, or "the Land of Palms;" and the people who inhabited

    it the Phœnicians, or "the Palm-tree people."

    The term was from the first applied with a good deal of vagueness. It was probably originally given to the region opposite Cyprus, from Gabala in the north--now Jebili--to Antaradus (Tortosa) and Marathus (Amrith) towards the south, where the palm-tree was first seen growing in rich abundance. The palm is the numismatic emblem of Aradus,[1] and though not now very frequent in the region which Strabo calls "the Aradian coast-tract,"[2] must anciently have been among its chief ornaments. As the Grecian knowledge of the coast extended southward, and a richer and still richer growth of the palm was continually

    noticed, almost every town and every village being embosomed in a circle of palm groves, the name extended itself until it reached as far south at any rate as Gaza, or (according to some) as Rhinocolura and the Torrens Ægypti. Northward the name seems never to have passed beyond Cape Posideium (Possidi) at the foot of Mount Casius, the tract between this and the range of Taurus being always known as Syria, never as Phœnecia or Phœnicé.

    The entire length of the coast between the limits of Cape Possidi and Rhinocolura is, without reckoning the lesser indentations, about 380 miles, or nearly the same as that of Portugal. The indentations of the coast-line are slight. From Rhinocolura to Mount Carmel, a distance of

    150 miles, not a single strong promontory asserts itself, nor is there a single bay of sufficient depth to attract the attention of geographers. Carmel itself is a notable headland, and shelters a bay of some size; but these once passed the old uniformity returns, the line being again almost unbroken for a distance of seventy-five miles, from Haifa to Beyrout (Berytus). North of Beyrout we find a little more variety. The coast projects in a tolerably bold sweep between the thirty-fourth parallel and Tripolis (Tarabulus) and recedes almost correspondingly between Tripolis and Tortosa (Antaradus), so that a deepish bay is formed between Lat. 34º 27? and Lat. 34º 45?, whence the line again runs northward unindented for fifty miles, to beyond Gabala (Jebili). After this, between Gabala and Cape Posideium there is considerable irregularity, the whole tract being mountainous, and spurs from Bargylus and Casius running down into the sea and forming a

    succession of headlands, of which Cape Posideium is the most remarkable.

But while the name Phœnicia is applied geographically to this long

    extent--nearly 400 miles--of coast-line, historically and ethnically it has to be reduced within considerably narrower limits. A race, quite distinct from that of the Phœnicians, was settled from an early

    date on the southern portion of the west Asian coast, where it verges towards Africa. From Jabneh (Yebna) southwards was Palestine, the country of the Philistines, perhaps even from Joppa (Jaffa), which is made the boundary by Mela.[3] Thus at least eighty miles of coast-line must be deducted from the 380, and the length of Phœnicia along the

    Mediterranean shore must be regarded as not exceeding three hundred miles.

    The width varied from eight or ten miles to thirty. We must regard as

the eastern boundary of Phœnicia the high ridge which forms the

    watershed between the streams that flow eastward toward the Orontes, Litany, and Jordan, and those that flow westward into the Mediterranean. It is difficult to say what was the /average/ width, but perhaps it may be fairly estimated at about fifteen miles. In this case the entire area would have been about 4,500 square miles.

    The tract was one of a remarkably diversified character. Lofty mountain, steep wooded hill, chalky slope, rich alluvial plain, and sandy shore succeeded each other, each having its own charm, which was enhanced by contrast. The sand is confined to a comparatively narrow strip along the seashore,[4] and to the sites of ancient harbours now filled up. It is exceedingly fine and of excellent silicious quality, especially in the vicinity of Sidon and at the foot of Mount Carmel. The most remarkable plains are those of Sharon, Acre, Tyre, Sidon, Beyrout, and Marathus. Sharon, so dear to the Hebrew poets,[5] is the maritime tract intervening between the highland of Samaria and the Mediterranean, extending from Joppa to the southern foot of Carmel--a distance of nearly sixty miles--and watered by the Chorseas, the Kaneh, and other rivers. It is a smooth, very slightly undulating tract, about ten miles in width from the sea to the foot of the mountains, which rise up abruptly from it without any intervening region of hills, and seem to bound it as a wall, above which tower the huge rounded masses of Ebal and Gerizim, with the wooded cone, on which stood Samaria, nestling at their feet.[6] The sluggish streams, several of them containing water during the whole of the year, make their way across it between reedy banks,[7] and generally spread out before reaching the shore into wide marshes, which might be easily utilised for purposes of irrigation. The soil is extremely rich, varying from bright red to deep black, and producing enormous crops of

    weeds or grain, according as it is cultivated or left in a state of nature. Towards the south the view over the region has been thus described: "From Ramleh there is a wide view on every side, presenting a prospect rarely surpassed in richness and beauty. I could liken it to nothing but the great plain of the Rhine by Heidelberg or, better still, to the vast plains of Lombardy, as seen from the cathedral of Milan and elsewhere. In the east the frowning mountains of Judah rose abruptly from the tract at their foot; while on the west, in fine contrast, the glittering waves of the Mediterranean Sea associated our thoughts with Europe. Towards the north and south, as far as the eye could reach, the beautiful plain was spread out like a carpet at our feet, variegated with tracts of brown from which the crops had just been taken, and with fields still rich with the yellow of the ripe

    corn, or green with the springing millet. Immediately below us the eye rested on the immense olive groves of Ramleh and Lydda, and the picturesque towers and minarets and domes of these large villages. In the plain itself were not many villages, but the tract of hills and the mountain-side beyond, especially in the north-east, were perfectly studded with them, and as now seen in the reflected beams of the setting sun they seemed like white villas and hamlets among the dark hills, presenting an appearance of thriftiness and beauty which