The second Syrian Honey Festival  kicks off in Al-Jalaa, Damascus

The second Syrian Honey Festival kicks off in Al-Jalaa, Damascus

With the participation of 34 beekeepers from...

Israeli occupation forces arrested 13 Palestinians in the West Bank

Israeli occupation forces arrested 13 Palestinians in the West Bank

Today, the Israeli occupation forces arrested...

  • The people of Hasaka protest against the Turkish occupation’s cutting off drinking water again and in rejection of the SDF militia’s violations

    The people of Hasaka protest against the...

    Monday, 18 January 2021 17:55
  • The participants in the conference of parliaments of countries defending Palestine: the need to confront American-Israeli conspiracies

    The participants in the conference of...

    Monday, 18 January 2021 17:33
  • Lavrov: What the United States is doing in Syria violates Resolution 2254

    Lavrov: What the United States is doing in...

    Monday, 18 January 2021 17:25
  • Sabbagh: the main reason for the wars and sieges that Syria is facing is its refusal to abandon the Palestinian cause

    Sabbagh: the main reason for the wars and...

    Monday, 18 January 2021 17:07
  • Lebanon signs final contract to secure 2.1 million doses of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine

    Lebanon signs final contract to secure 2.1...

    Monday, 18 January 2021 15:09
  • First round of final qualifiers tests of the Syrian Science Olympiad kicks off

    First round of final qualifiers tests of the...

    Monday, 18 January 2021 15:02
  • Vaezi: There is no communication between the Iranian government and the administration of the elected US president

    Vaezi: There is no communication between the...

    Monday, 18 January 2021 12:05
  • Citizens in Syria’s Hasaka protest against Turkish occupation’s drinking water cuts, SDF militia’s violations

    Citizens in Syria’s Hasaka protest against...

    Monday, 18 January 2021 11:18
  • American occupation forces transfer  70 ISIS terrorists from Hasakah prisons to Al-Tanf

    American occupation forces transfer 70 ISIS...

    Monday, 18 January 2021 10:13
  • Coronavirus kills more than two million and 38 thousand people around the world

    Coronavirus kills more than two million and 38...

    Monday, 18 January 2021 10:05
  • The second Syrian Honey Festival  kicks off in Al-Jalaa, Damascus

    The second Syrian Honey Festival kicks off in...

    Monday, 18 January 2021 09:57
  • Talents of scientific excellence participate in the final qualifications of Syrian Scientific Olympiad

    Talents of scientific excellence participate in...

    Monday, 18 January 2021 09:46
  • Israeli occupation forces arrested 13 Palestinians in the West Bank

    Israeli occupation forces arrested 13...

    Monday, 18 January 2021 09:36
  • President Al-Assad awards Director of the General Authority for Schools of Martyrs’ Sons and Daughters with Syrian Merit Medal

    President Al-Assad awards Director of the...

    Monday, 18 January 2021 09:25
  • More than two million and 32 thousand deaths and more than 95 million cases of Coronavirus in the world

    More than two million and 32 thousand deaths...

    Sunday, 17 January 2021 19:41
  • The Turkish occupation forces and its mercenaries once again deprive about a million civilians of drinking water in Hasaka

    The Turkish occupation forces and its...

    Sunday, 17 January 2021 19:35
  • The Palestinian Foreign Ministry demands accountability for Israeli war criminals

    The Palestinian Foreign Ministry demands...

    Sunday, 17 January 2021 19:32
  • The American occupation evacuates 20 trucks loaded with stolen grains from Hasakah to Iraq

    The American occupation evacuates 20 trucks...

    Sunday, 17 January 2021 19:29
  • The SDF militia kidnapped a number of young men in the eastern countryside of Deir Ezzor

    The SDF militia kidnapped a number of young men...

    Sunday, 17 January 2021 19:27
  • Turkish parliamentarian: Dialogue with Syria is necessary to protect Turkey's security

    Turkish parliamentarian: Dialogue with Syria is...

    Sunday, 17 January 2021 19:19

Economy & Aftermath

Investigative Reporting

“Wood and Light Dialogue” a sculpture exhibition in Damascus

“Wood and Light Dialogue” a sculpture ex…

The Arab Cultural center in Abou Rummaneh is currently hosting a sculpture exhibition entitled “Wood and Light Dialogue” for artist Shafiq Al Ghabra . This exhibition sh...

  1. Tourism
  2. Culture
  3. Society
  4. Golan
Muqlus, amazing vivid nature that revives Al-Nadara Valley

Muqlus, amazing vivid nature that revive…

Muqlus is situated like a glowing green jewel at the foot of Al Helou Mountain attracting visitors all over the world for its unique beautiful nature and distinctive climate. It is located about 40 km to the west of the city of Homs, at the top of the Wadi Al-Nadara Mountains about 800 m above the sea level.

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Arab Writers Union holds the first international cartoons exhibition

Arab Writers Union holds the first inter…

With the participation of more than 252 cartoonists  from 52 countries  around the world,  the Arab Writers Union held its first international cartoons exhibition in a new way which  dealt with the role  of international figures who influenced the literary and cultural movement.   The visions of the participating cartoonists' paintings differed in  the technique  of drawing, but what they all had in common was that they they revealed the impact ...

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Lattakia Education is preparing for a training course for tutoring courses

Lattakia Education is preparing for a tr…

In implementation of the Ministry of Education's plan to support the quality of the educational process, Lattakia Education Directorate is conducting a training course targeting / 120 / trainees in two phases: the first starts on 16/01/2021 until 21/01/2021, and the second for a period of three weeks, starts from 1/29/2021, with the aim of enabling teachers and teaching assistants to apply effective learning strategies, and to intensify content a...

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Syria renews call for enforcing the implementation of the Resolution No. 497 on occupied Syrian Golan

Syria renews call for enforcing the impl…

Syria has renewed its call on the Security Council to act immediately as to enforce the implementation of the Resolution No. 497 of 1981 and force the Israeli occupation entity to stop its illegal settlement activities and repressive procedures against the people in the occupied Syrian Golan and to withdraw from the entire Golan to the June 4th 1967 line. Resolution 497 (1981) reaffirms that the acquisition of ter...

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The wall was encircled by River Banias one of the branches of the main River Barada. In later times the city grew larger and a Roman wall was built. River Barada used to run to the major Damascus Lake (now the city of Damascus) which later dried up and receded to be divided into the two present lakes of al Utaibe and al Heijaneh. Barzeh was the major connecting point in a communication net that extended from Saidnaya and Ma’aloula in the east to Dummar and al Hameh in the west. In the Roman period the region of Damascus was known as (Abela ) and was administratively considered a state, with Souk Wadi Brada as its capital. This state had to be ended after the Islamic conquest. That is why it is said that Barzeh is the mother of Damascus. Man Inhabited Damascus at different stages of history:

The first stage: Humans (Neanderthals and Chromanions and later Homo Sapiens) 50-10 thousand years BC. Inhabited caves spread in Yabroud, Ras al Ma’arra, al Nabk, Ein al Tineh and Ma’aloula.

The second stage: 10-7 thousand BC. habitation extended to Juba’adin, Isal al Ward, Saidnaya and Ma’arat Saidnaya.

The third stage: 7-6 thousand BC. Habitation reached the regions of al Tall, Barzeh, Dummar, al Hameh and Souk Wadi Barada, al Takieh, Qatana, and al Sahara plain. In this stage Barzeh became the center of habitation and the origin of the city of Damascus.

The fourth stage: 6-3.5 BC. This is the stage when man moved from the caves to start the agricultural period which ended by the drying up of the Lake of Damascus. In this period man developed his ways of living and started living in houses. He settled several regions that can be identified from the remains discovered in Tall Aswad (near Jdaidet al Khass) in al Ghouta between al Utaibe lake and al Heijaneh, Tall al Ramad in Qatana and Tall al Khawarizmieh …..etc.

The fifth stage: Started by the migration of the Amorites-Canaanites who replaced the caveman and started building the Canaanite city of Damascus on one of the heights of the city beginning with the temple of Hadad and its surroundings.

Caves and Grottos of Yabroud.

Yabroud is an Aramaic word mentioned on the clay boards of Mesopotamia depicting the assault of the Assyrian king Ashur Baniba’al 668-626 BC. This proves that Damascus was an Aramaic kingdom at that time. Yabroud Caves were first discovered by the German archaeologist Alfred Roust (1900-1983) who started his searches when he was making a journey from Germany on a bicycle .During his stay in Syria he had Dysentery and was hospitalized in the Danish Hospital of al Nabk, where he heard of the ancient caves for the first time. Being curious, he ceased his journey and started excavating the region for three years (1930-1933).

In Wadi Eskafta there are three caves; the first of which has the influence of the Yabroud civilization, Mar Saba cave or the Temple of the sun (because the sun rays enter it once every year, in the 22nd of February. The cave is frequently visited and shows signs of the Paleolithic and Neolithic ages /45-40/ thousand years BC. There is a similar chain of caves in al Nabk, Qara and al Sahl ). In Ma’aloula, and on the slopes of its mountain, there are many caves , some of which are large (enough to accommodate a family) with air outlets. Ma’aloula was a connecting point between the old man of Yabroud and the man of the caves of Damascus ,things that confirm the line of relations between the old caves of (Yabroud, Barzeh and Damascus). In the age of Barada, the old stone age,10- 8 thousand years BC. man started living in Damascus region (Barzeh, Za’afaranieh, al A’attara and the surroundings) in the west until the Source of River Barada, the Hermon planes, the Mt. Qassyoun planes in an uninterrupted line of caves stretching from Mt. Qassyoun, al Rabweh, al Ma’azeh, Bassimeh, Ein al Khadra, Ein al Fijeh, A’azta Fort Cave, the caves of al Takieh, the caves village, al Husainieh, Abel’s Tomb, and the caves of Madaya, Saraghaya and Zabadani. The line goes on to reach Barzeh, bound Harasta, al Tall, Mnin and Saidnaya. This line ,in fact, separates the civilization of north Syria from the Natouphi civilization in the south. After the Damascus Lake had dried up and its remains; lake al Utaibe and Lake al Heijaneh, were formed, man descended from the heights to the fertile land to start agriculture, and to live on the slopes of Mt. Qassyoun, where many sacred and legendary places still exist: the Cave of the Forties, the Cave of Hunger, the Martyrs tombs, the Blood Cave and Eve’s Tears Cave, al Ma’azeh cave, Bachar and Sayyar caves, Barzeh cave, and the Nativity of Abraham cave.

The Formation of Damascus: According to archaeological estimates ,the cave man started settling the old city of Damascus between 6250-5000 BC. with some variations about the exact start of the city. It was said that Geron Bin A’ad built it, and the first temple founded in it (the temple of Hadad, presently the Umayyad Mosque) contained Greek statues, but the shapes, sizes, stones and walls of the city prove that it belonged to the bronze age 3000 BC. In a later time houses started to appear around the temple and the Canaanite built a wall around it. Gradually the city expanded and the Aramites built a new wall, but the continuously growing number of its population obliged its inhabitants to build new walls, the Roman one ,then the Islamic one. The city, as was the case in many cities, had the houses of the rich dwellers inside the wall, while the poor lived outside it.

The first wave of Arab Acadian immigration from the Arabian Peninsula started in 3500 BC. And settled Iraq. One thousand year later an Amorite-Canaanite wave settled north of natural Syria (the Levant) and spread west (the Phoenicians) and then reached Damascus.

Damascus was mentioned in the cuneiform boards of the Amorites as Di-Mash- Qa and later became the largest Canaanite city (440 m long X 396 m wide) with a moat filled with water from River Banias, and had seven gates. The palace was the most prominent monument of the city at that time known as the Maqslat (near Medanet al Shahem now) while the eastern part of the city had the royal residence with the citadel ,as the main center of activity of the city).

After the Aramites settled Damascus and started enlarging it, they built the Aramaic Wall mentioned on the boards of the Assyrian invaders. When the city fell to the Assyrians 720 BC., the wall was destroyed by the Assyrian king Sargon II.

Later the Romans occupied Damascus 64 BC. and finished building the Roman wall in 41 BC. Many places still carry their original Aramaic names up to this date.

Researchers estimate the number of the Population of Damascus in the early stages of its settlement of 2000 people who lived in 170-200 caves spread on an area of 25 Sq km. When the Romans occupied Damascus in 60 AD it had around 45-50 thousand people and the number decreased during the Islamic Rashidi period to 40 000 people. At the end of the eighth century AD Damascus still had about 30-40 thousand people, a number that started to increase during the Seljuks, the Atabeghs, and during the reign of Saladin, Damascus had about 100 000 people .This figure was reduced during the invasions of Hulagu and Tamerlain to rise again during the Memlouk period. Under the Ottoman occupation the city prospered and its population increased, and is still growing, that the city had around 5 millions nowadays.

Haifaa Mafalani

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