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The origin of Phoenicians

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Cyrus Shahmiri View Drop Down
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  Quote Cyrus Shahmiri Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: The origin of Phoenicians
    Posted: 14-Aug-2005 at 14:04

Ancient History Sourcebook: Herodotus:

Book I, ''1-2

The Phoenicians, who had formerly dwelt on the shores of the Persian Gulf, having migrated to the Mediterranean and settled in the parts which they now inhabit.

I think many other historians have also mentioned it, for example Strabo says the islands of Tyros and Arados in the Persian Gulf were the mother cities of the Phoenician cities.

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  Quote ArmenianSurvival Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14-Aug-2005 at 16:52
While my dad was growing up in Lebanon he read in the Lebanese history books that Phoenicians actually migrated to the Mediterranean coast from the Arabian Penninsula. He used to show it to the Lebanese Christians who claimed that they were 'Phoenicians' and not Arabs, hah.
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  Quote Maju Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14-Aug-2005 at 18:35

In terms of archaeology, language, and religion, there is little to set the Phoenicians apart as markedly different from other local cultures of Canaan. However, they are unique in their remarkable seafaring achievements. Indeed, in the Amarna tablets of the 14th century BC they call themselves Kenaani or Kinaani (Canaanites); and even much later in the 6th century BC, Hecataeus writes that Phoenicia was formerly called χνα, a name Philo of Byblos later adopted into his mythology as his eponym for the Phoenicians: "Khna who was afterwards called Phoinix".

To many archaeologists therefore, the Phoenicians are simply indistinguishable from the descendants of coastal-dwelling Canaanites, who over the centuries developed a particular seagoing culture and skills. But others believe equally firmly, like Herodotus, that the Phoenician culture must have been inspired from an external source. All manner of suggestions have been made: that the Phoenicians were sea-traders from the Land of Punt who co-opted the Canaanite population; or that they were connected with the Minoans; or the Sea Peoples or the Philistines further south; or on the other side of the fence, that they represent the activities of supposed coastal maritime Israelite tribes like Dan.

While the Semitic language of the Phoenicians, and some evidence of invasion at the site of Byblos, suggest origins in the wave of Semitic migration that hit the Fertile Crescent between 2300 and 2100 BC, many scholars, including Sabatino Moscati believe that the Phoenicians evolved from a prior non-Semitic people of the area, suggesting a mixture between the two populations. Historian Gerhard Herm further asserts that, because the Phoenicians' legendary sailing abilities are not well attested before the invasions of the Sea Peoples around 1200 BC, that these Sea Peoples would have merged with the local population to produce the Phoenicians, who seemingly gained these abilities rather suddenly at that time. This idea is backed up by archaeological evidence that the Philistines, often thought of as related to the Sea Peoples, were culturally linked to Mycenaean Greeks, who were also known to be great sailors even in this period.

And so the debate has persisted.

(from Wikipedia)

So let's say that a good theory is that local natives were semitized becoming Canaanites and then sailorized by the Sea Peoples becoming the Phoenicians that we know historically about.

The semites that aculturized the locals could well have come from that Arabian region of the Red Sea, why not?

Still, I suspect that the natives of Biblos area are connected to the ancestors of the peoples of Cardium-Printed Pottery culture that extended the Neolithic in Central and Western Mediterranean Europe in the 6th and 5th milennia BCE. Some genetic markers would seem to confirm that, while the ancient pottery of Biblos is at some phase clearly Cardium type. If this would be the case, then the pre-Phoenicians would have always been good sailors, as were Mediterranean Neolithics beyond any doubt.



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  Quote Cyrus Shahmiri Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15-Aug-2005 at 10:21

ArmenianSurvival, it can not be said that just Arabs lived in the Arabian Peninsula, especially the eastern part of it.

the Phoenicians are simply indistinguishable from the descendants of coastal-dwelling Canaanites, who over the centuries developed a particular seagoing culture and skills.

then what about the origin of Canaanites?

ALEXANDERS FLEET IN THE PERSIAN-GULF:

But Nearchus, afraid that they would disembark and leave their ships from faint-heartedness, purposely kept the ships in the open roadstead. They sailed thence and anchored at Canate, after a voyage of seven hundred and fifty stades. Here there are a beach and shallow channels. Thence they sailed eight hundred stades, anchoring at Troea; there were small and poverty-stricken villages on the coast.

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  Quote Kenaney Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15-Aug-2005 at 13:49

My real name is Kenan lol

It means a holy mountan in (current) Palestine.

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  Quote Maju Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15-Aug-2005 at 17:48


Hi, Mr. Kenan/Canaan/holy-mountain, last of Canaanites, I guess.

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  Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15-Aug-2005 at 18:19

There are some Christian Phonecians in southern Turkey, moved by Ottomans from Lebanon to the docks of Mersin, because of their capability of well sea trading.

Most of them dont look like an Arab at all, they have burnt skins and basic Meditarrennian features. They seem like Greeks, you cant differ them from a Greek of Izmir easily.

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  Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15-Aug-2005 at 18:21
BTW dont be so confused Kenan, we have so many interesting names in Turkey, for example Sibel, the ancient mother Goddess of anatolia (Kibele)...
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  Quote ArmenianSurvival Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15-Aug-2005 at 18:33
Originally posted by Oguzoglu

Most of them dont look like an Arab at all, they have burnt skins and basic Meditarrennian features.


Ya, ive noticed that even many Lebanese Arabs dont look very much like Arabs. Some of them have light skin tone and the basic Mediterranean features that you mentioned. My parents lived in Lebanon, Israel and Saudi Arabia, and they tell me that many Arabs dont have dark skin at all, and that many of them look like any other Mediterranean peoples. They say the stereotype as to what an Arab should look like is inaccurate.


Edited by ArmenianSurvival
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  Quote Artaxiad Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15-Aug-2005 at 23:33

I've seen some Lebanese Arabs with very light brown/blonde hair and some Armenians with red hair...

And yes, most Arabs from countries like Syria and Lebanon do not look like North-African Arabs. Similar differences exist between Eastern Armenians and Western (or Diaspora) Armenians.

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  Quote Kenaney Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16-Aug-2005 at 14:19

Originally posted by Oguzoglu

BTW dont be so confused Kenan, we have so many interesting names in Turkey, for example Sibel, the ancient mother Goddess of anatolia (Kibele)...

LoL, im not confused at all. 

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