By Philip K. Hitti (auth.)
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Extra info for A Short History of Lebanon
Hellenistic Phoenicians made a noteworthy contribution to Greek philosophy in its Stoic and Epicurean forms. In fact the founder of Stoicism was a Cyprus-born Phoenician named Zeno (333-261), whose stoa poikile (painted porch), where he lectured in Athens, gave the name to the school. Zeno spoke Greek with an accent and was called Phoenician by his contemporaries. His Republic projected an ideal state having no national boundaries and comprising only full citizens with wives and properties held in common.
But, throughout, the preoccupation of the people was trade, crafts, art and religion rather than war and expansion. Plato's judgment, "Egypt and Phoenicia love money. The special characteristic of our part of the world is love of learning", had some justification. Starting long before this time with coastwise sailings to peddle their tunny, glass, earthenware and other local products, Phoenicians in this period of independence struck across the open sea, charted east-to-west trade routes and planted colonies on all sides of the Mediterranean basin.
Fable relates the modern Masonic fraternal order to those masons of Hiram, cradles the order in the Temple and makes Solomon its first grand master. Not only were the building and decoration inspired by Canaanite motifs, but the ritual and sacrifices therein reflected Canaanite practices. Hiram's men also built for Solomon his fleet - the first in Hebrew history - based in Ezion-Geber (al-Aqabah, at the head of the Red Sea), and they trained Hebrews in sailing along the coasts of Arabia and east Africa (I K.
A Short History of Lebanon by Philip K. Hitti (auth.)