WONDERFUL MIDDLE EAST ASIA

 

 

  LEBANON

 

 

SIDON

 

Şayd or Sidon, also Saida, city and seaport, southwestern Lebanon, on the Mediterranean Sea, near Beirut. It is a center for the export of olive oil, oranges, and lemons and also for the cultivation of silk, tobacco, and figs. In ancient times it was a city of Phoenicia, famous for its wine and purple dyes. In the surrounding area are numerous rock-cut burial places of the ancient Phoenicians, in which have been found the sarcophagi of Eshmunazar, king of Assyria, and others. The city was badly damaged in warfare in the early 1980s. Population (1988 estimate) 38,000.

 

Qasr al-Bahr the Sea Castle

 

Bangunan dengan lantai 1 untuk penyimpanan barang dan lantai 2 untuk toko

(Khan al-Franj, built by Kakhr al-Din in 17th century)

 

Kota Khan al-Franj

 

TYRE

 

Tyre (Latin Tyrus; Hebrew Zor), the most important city of ancient Phoenicia, located at the site of present-day Sr in southern Lebanon. Herodotus, the Greek historian, records a tradition that traced the settlement of Tyre back to the 28th century BC. In the 7th century AD it came under the dominion of the Saracens. In the 12th century it was taken by the Crusaders, who kept it until 1291, when the town came under Muslim rule.

 

Roman arch

 

Roman aquaduct

 

Roman bath

 

Water cisterns

 

Columns along Roman main street

 

Byzantine mozaics laid over the Roman mozaic floor

 

Kuburan orang Romawi

 

 

ANJAR - An Umayyad City

 

 

The site with great palace in the background

 

Umayyad, also Omayyad, first great Arab Muslim dynasty of caliphs (religious and secular leaders) founded by Muawiyah I in 661 and lasting until 750. Uthman ibn Affan, a member of the prominent Umayyad family of Mecca, had been elected to the caliphate in 644 to succeed Umar I, but his weakness and nepotism resulted in rebellion and he was murdered in 656. Uthman was succeeded by Ali, son-in-law of the prophet Muhammad and chief of the legitimist party, which believed that only a member of Muhammads family could rightfully hold the caliphate. However, Muawiyah I, governor of Syria and first Umayyad caliph, revolted against Ali and, supported by Amr, the conqueror of Egypt, gained the advantage. Hailed as caliph at Jerusalem in 660, Muawiyah I was in complete control soon after the assassination of Ali the following year.

 

City was a trade center, 600 shops have been uncovered

Under Muawiyah I the capital was changed from Medina to Damascus. Muawiyah I developed an administrative system modeled after the Byzantine Empire and before his death in 680 had secured the throne for his son, thus putting the state on a dynastic basis. Conquest was begun again with an offensive on all fronts. Under Muawiyah I and his Umayyad successors, Muslim control of the Mediterranean region was completed. The Arabs, led by a fierce North African Berber army commanded by Tariq, crossed from North Africa and eventually conquered Spain; in the east they met no effective opposition until they had passed the borders of India. They were stopped in the west by the Franks under Charles Martel and by the Byzantine Empire, which repulsed an attack on Constantinople early in the 8th century.

Latar belakang adalah gunung Anti-Lebanon yang memisahkan Lebanon dari Syria

Anti-Lebanon or Anti-Liban (Greek Antilibanus; Arabic Jabal ash Sharqi, "Eastern Mountain"), mountain range located in southwestern Syria and eastern Lebanon, about 145 km (about 90 mi) long. The crest of the range forms much of the border between the two countries. The range extends from the plain around the Syrian city of Hims in the north to Mount Hermon in the south. The Anti-Lebanon is separated from the Lebanon Mountains to the west by a fertile valley, the ancient Coele-Syria (now Beka Valley, or Bekaa Valley), which lies in both Lebanon and Syria. A road connects Damascus, Syria, to Beirut, Lebanon. Some geographers refer to the two ranges together as the Lebanons. The Anti-Lebanon has few trees and its northern section is barren and rocky. The highest peaks are Mount Hermon (2814 m/9232 ft), which is the source of the Jordan River, and Tal at Musa (about 2669 m/8755 ft). East of the Anti-Lebanon range is the site of the Old Testament city of Helbn).

 

Latar belakang Istana Agung

Under the Umayyad dynasty, political and social ascendancy remained in the hands of a few Arab families from Mecca and Medina. This caused the Muslim population, which had grown enormously as the empire expanded, to become increasingly discontented, especially since the Umayyads had found it necessary to increase their income from taxation. Lands were now taxed without regard to religion, and Muslims were exempt only from personal taxes.

 

Great Palace

 

Great Palace

 

Interior Palace

Opposition centered in Persia where there was continued opposition to Syrian domination and where the legitimists allied themselves with the Abbasids, who claimed descent from Abbas, the uncle of the prophet Muhammad. The Abbasids overthrew the Umayyads in 750, killed the caliph, Marwan II, and gained the caliphate for themselves. Members of the Umayyad family were located and slain, except for Abd-ar-Rahman I, who escaped to Crdoba, Spain, in 756 to rule as an independent emir. The Abbasids moved the capital of the empire eastward to a new city, Baghdd, which they founded on the Tigris River.

 

 

BAALBECK

 

Baalbeck, also known as Heliopolis, is an ancient Roman city in northeastern Lebanon. Most visitors see Baalbeck on a day trip from Beirut, which is a scenic mountain drive away.
Baalbeck is situated on the eastern slopes of Lebanon's mountain range in a wide and fertile valley known as the Beqa'a. In ancient times, caravan stations developed in this valley, especially at places with a year-round water supply, and they became agricultural centers. Baalbeck was one such site. It occupied the especially favorable spot at the highest level of the Beqa'a valley, at the source of two important rivers and along the main inland transportation road.
Although it was in Roman times that Baalbeck achieved its wide fame, the site was of political and religious importance long before the Romans arrived. The name "Baalbeck" derives from the Canaanite god Baal, whose name means "Lord." Few specifics are known about the early history of Baalbeck, except that it was inhabited in the Bronze Age and a Canaanite city connected with the cult of Baal was established on the site. Baalbeck was almost certainly a great religious center.

 

Kuil Matahari

 

The supreme god of the Canaanites was El, the sun god, who was represented by a bull. El's wife was Ashera, goddess of the sea. This divine couple could not be approached directly, but only through the mediation of their son Baal, the Lord of rain, storms, and thunder. His symbols were a thunderbolt ending in a spear, ears of corn, and the bull. Baal had a son, Aliyan, who was the god of springs and floral growth, and a daughter, Anat, who was Aliyan's faithful consort. Set against these positive forces was Mot (Death), the god of summer and drought, who helped fruit to ripen but also killed the vegetation, if not supported by Aliyan's springs. Another important deity was Astarte, the goddess of love and fertility.

 

Fountain in front, Sacrifice platform in background

 

Canaanite mythology reflected the cycle of nature. Baal and Aliyan ruled the earth in winter and spring with plentiful rains and thunder. When the dryness of summer arrives, Mot attains superiority and kills Baal (the rain) and his son Aliyan (the springs). Aliyan's sister and lover Anat retrieves his body from the underworld and buries it, then searches for Mot and kills him (representing the harvest). With the destruction of Mot the summer heat recedes, and in late autum Baal and Aliyan reappear with the live-giving rains and springs.
Ball was adopted by the Assyrians as Bel, and he can be equated with the Egyptian Seth, the Phoenician Reshef and the Aramaean Haddad. The triad of Baal, Aliyan and Anat had its parallels in the Greek Zeus, Hermes and Aphrodite and the Roman Jupiter, Mercury and Venus. The sequence of life, death and resurrection was also central to the popular cult of Adonis and Osiris, which came out of Egypt and flourished well into Roman times.
Along with the rest of this part of the world, Baalbeck was Hellenized after the conquests of Alexander the Great in the 4th century BC. The Greeks named Baalbeck "Heliopolis," City of the Sun. To distinguish it from its important namesake in Egypt, ancient writers called it Heliopolis "in Phoenicia" or "in the Lebanon."
The Roman general Pompey conquered much of the region in the 1st century BC, and Baalbeck became part of the new province of Syria. A few decades later, Mark Antony controlled of the East, and he gave Baalbeck and its surrounding region to Cleopatra. But in 31 BC Octavian (later known as Augustus) drove Antony and Cleopatra out of Syria and ushered in Rome's golden age of stability known as the Pax Romana. It was in this context that the construction of the great Roman temples at Baalbeck began.
The Romans did not start from scratch. Archaeologists have discovered pre-Hellenistic remains of a sanctuary on the site, where Baal and the other Canaanite deities were worshipped. It centered around a natural crevice, which was probably the original sacred site before anything was built. Both the Ptolemies and the Seleucids added Hellenistic elements to the existing sanctuary.

 

Hexagonal Court

 

The Roman Temple of Jupiter was constructed in the 1st century AD. An inscription on top of a column shaft indicates that it was nearing completion in the year 60. The Great Court was added in the early 2nd century. The temple was unique not only in its great size, but in its Eastern architectural influences and in its financing in large part by non-Romans, an indicator that the local people regarded the Heliopolitan Jupiter fully as their own. Construction of the Temple of Bacchus began in the later 2nd century under Antoninus Pius, after the cult of Bacchus had become popular in the empire. Construction of the great temple complex continued until the conversion of Constantine to Christianity in the early 4th century, when it came to halt with many details left unfinished.
Under Roman rule, the supreme god worshipped at Baalbeck/Heliopolis was Jupiter Heliopolitan, a complex fusion of a Baal and Jupiter. The statue that stood in the Temple of Jupiter at Baalbeck was described by ancient writers as holding a thunderbolt with ears of corn and being flanked by two bulls. He was part of a Helipolitan Triad of Jupiter, Mercury and Venus. The religious rituals at the temple were more Syrian than they were Greco-Roman, but the site did include an oracle that was consulted by emperors.

 

Corinthian column capital

 

The most famous sight at Baalbeck is the Temple of Jupiter, whose six remaining columns are the largest anywhere in the Roman world. The famous statue of Jupiter Heliopolitan stood in the rear of the temple on a raised adytum (holy of holies), which only initiated priests could approach. The great temple was fronted by a hexagonal forecourt added by Philip the Arab (244-49), the layout of which can still be clearly seen.
The Temple of Bacchus is the best-preserved structure at Baalbeck, and in fact the best preserved Roman temple of its size anywhere. The Temple of Bacchus is larger than the Parthenon, with an interior span of 62 feet and a monumental gateway 21 feet wide and nearly 42 feet high. Although dwarfed by those of the Temple of Jupiter, the Bacchus temple's stone blocks still weigh tens of tons each.

 

View across temple site

The temple's size was matched by its quality in construction (the blocks fit together perfectly) and in elegant decoration. Some figurative reliefs depicting Greek gods have survived, though in a very damaged state. Yet, despite its clear importance, very little is known about the purpose of the impressive building. Even its dedication to Bacchus is far from certain. It is positioned oddly, a huge building that nevertheless stands in the shadow of the great complex of the Temple of Jupiter, pushed nearly to the end of the forbiddding wall that supports the Great Court.
The Temple of Venus is small and round, a major contrast with the giant rectangular temples of Jupiter and Bacchus. The Temple of Venus has six columns that probably once supported a dome. It is carved everywhere with niches, sculptures (now lost) and other elegant decorations.
The Hexagonal Forecourt is a six-sided area built between the Propylaea and the Great Court in the early 3rd century AD. It incorporated 30 granite columns. By the early 5th century, it had been covered with a dome and transformed into a church.
The Baalbeck International Festival of music and drama takes place among the Roman ruins of Baalbeck in July and August each year.

 

Kuil Jupiter

 

Baalbeck (ancient Heliopolis), town, eastern Lebanon, between the Ln and Asi rivers. The name, which means "City of Baal," is derived from the early association of the town with the worship of Baal, a local sun deity whom the ancient Greeks identified with their sun god, Helios; the Greeks and Romans called the town Heliopolis, "City of the Sun." Once a splendid city, it is famous now for the imposing ruins of ancient temples.

 

Pemandangan dari sisi lain

 

The great Temple of the Sun was about 49 by 88 m (about 160 by 290 ft) and contained 58 Corinthian columns, each 22.9 m (75 ft) high and 2.2 m (7.25 ft) in diameter. The entablature was 4.3 m (14 ft) in height. The temple appears to have been built on an artificial mound of earth, with great stones, or megaliths, employed to sustain this mass. Of these megaliths, three are in position at the western end, one of them measuring 19.5 m (64 ft) long by 4.3 m (14 ft) square.

 

Pengunjung kuil

 

The Temple of Jupiter, also of the Corinthian order, measured 69.2 m (227 ft) by 35.7 m (117 ft) and was surrounded by a peristyle of 42 plain columns, with 10 fluted columns in the vestibule. The entablature was very profusely and richly ornamented.

 

Kuil Bacchus, dedikasi pada Venus/Astarte

 

Sisa reruntuhan mosaik Bacchus

 

Plaque on wall honoring the visit of Kaiser Wilhelm

 

The Temple of Bacchus, in front of the Temple of Jupiter, is better preserved.

 

Kuil Venus

 

A smaller temple, the Temple of Venus, supported by six granite columns, adjoined the Temple of Jupiter. Traces also remain of a later Christian basilica.

 

Pelancong mancanegara memperoleh kesempatan naik onta di Lebanon

 

Although the early history of Baalbeck is almost entirely unknown, abundant evidence indicates that the city is ancient, portions of the masonry being attributed to Phoenician origin. The Roman emperor Augustus made the city a Roman colony; the Roman emperor Trajan consulted a celebrated oracle there. The city was sacked by the Arabs in AD748, and pillaged by the Turkic chieftain Tamerlane in 1400. A severe earthquake in 1759 devastated what monuments still remained in the city. Present-day Baalbeck, connected by road with Beirut and with Damascus and Halab (Aleppo) in Syria, is the chief town in eastern Lebanon. Population (1981 estimate) 50,000.

 

 


    

GOD IS THE LORD WHO DOES MIRACLES

 

         

 

 

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