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Anjar Archaeological Site (عنجر‎)





Location: Beqaa Valley, Beqaa Governorate   Map




Description of Anjar Archaeological Site


Anjar is an ancient and medieval archaeological site situated in Beqaa Valley in the Beqaa Governorate of Lebanon. Its name is derived from Arab word of Ain Gerrah or "water source of Gerrah". Gerrah was a local deity that protected the city and its residents. Anjar Archaeological Site was found around 714 AD (according to the Byzantine Greek historian Theophanes the Confessor) as a trading post on the crossroads of trading routes in the Bekaa Valley. They linked Damascus with southern provinces of the Middle Eastern towns. Soon the city grew in size and importance. Archeological digs in the 20th century revealed a rectangular city, surrounded by defensive city walls and forty towers. City gates decorated by porticos led to two main streets of Anjar that crossed the city from North to South and from East to West thus diving the city into four equal sectors.



Most of Anjar Archaeological Site structures date back to the 8th century AD. The city was inhabited for just several decades before it was abandoned during Umayyad Dynasty period and rediscovered only in 1940. During its brief period of existence, Anjar residents constructed numerous public and private structures. The palace of Khalifa was located in the South- Eastern part of Anjar and the main mosque of the city stood in the North- Eastern part of the city. Western part of the city was largely taken by private residencies of common residents of Anjar. Many of the houses also contained large areas reserved for various animals that once lived here. During early Medieval period it had to be one of the smelliest places in the city as hundreds of camels, horses, donkeys and other animals were cramped along human residencies.





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