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Phoenicia

Introduction

Phoenicia (fĭnēˈshə) [key], ancient territory occupied by Phoenicians. The name Phoenicia also appears as Phenice and Phenicia. These people were Canaanites (see Canaan), and in the 9th cent. B.C. the Greeks gave the new appellation Phoenicians to those Canaanites who lived on the seacoast and traded with the Greeks.

The geographic boundaries of the territory are vague, and the name Phoenicia may be applied to all those places on the shores of the E Mediterranean where the Phoenicians established colonies. More often it refers to the heart of the territory where the great Phoenician cities, notably Tyre and Sidon, stood (corresponding roughly to the coast of present-day Lebanon).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Ancient History, Middle East


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