|Elevation||34 m (112 ft)|
|Time zone||EET (UTC+2)|
|• Summer (DST)||EEST (UTC+3)|
|Dialing code||+961 (6) Landline|
The coastal city of Batroun (Greek: Βοτρύς, Botrys; Arabic: البترون, al-Batrun; Phoenician: בתרון, Bitron) located in northern Lebanon is one of the oldest cities in the world. It is the capital city of Batroun District.
The name Batroun derives from the Greek, Botrys (also spelled Bothrys), which was later Latinized to Botrus. Historians believe that the Greek name of the town originates from the Phoenician word, bater, which means to cut and it refers to the maritime wall that the Phoenicians built in the sea to protect them from tidal waves. Other historians believe that the name of the town is derivative of the Phoenician words, beit truna, which translates to house of the chief.
Batroun is a major tourist destination in North Lebanon. The town boasts tens of historic churches, both Catholic and Greek Orthodox. The town is also a major beach resort with a vibrant nightlife. Citrus groves surround Batroun, and the town has been famous, from the early twentieth century, for its fresh lemonade, which is sold by most of the cafés and restaurants on its main street.
Batroun is likely the "Batruna" mentioned in the Amarna letters dating to the 14th century B.C. Batroun was mentioned by the ancient geographers Strabo, Pliny, Ptolemy, Stephanus Byzantius, and Hierocles. Theophanes called the city "Bostrys."
The Phoenicians founded Batroun on the southern side of the promontory called in Antiquity, Theoprosopon and during the Byzantine Empire, Cape Lithoprosopon. Batroun is said to have been founded by Ithobaal I (Ethbaal), king of Tyre, whose daughter Jezabel (897-866 B.C.) married Ahab.
In 551, Batroun was destroyed by an earthquake, which also caused mudslides and made the Cape Lithoprosopon crack. Historians believe that Batroun's large natural harbor was formed during the earthquake.
Three Greek Orthodox bishops are known to have come from Batroun: Porphyrius in 451, Elias about 512 and Stephen in 553 (Lequien, II, 827). According to a Greek Notitia episcopatuum, the Greek Orthodox See has existed in Batroun since the tenth century when the city was then called Petrounion. After the Muslim conquests of the region, the name was Arabicized to Batroun.
One of Batroun's medieval archaeological sites is the Crusader citadel of Mousaylaha which is constructed on an isolated massive rock with steep sides protruding in the middle of a plain surrounded by mountains.
Under Ottoman rule, Batroun was the centre of a caza in the mutessariflik of Lebanon and the seat of a Maronite diocese, suffragan to the Maronite patriarchate. Since 1999 it has been the seat of the Maronite eparchy.
- [dead link]
- "Catholic Encyclopedia: Bothrys". Newadvent.org. Retrieved 2012-11-12.
- David M. Cheney. "Botrys (Titular See)". [Catholic-Hierarchy]. Retrieved 2012-11-12.
- David M. Cheney (2012-10-24). "Its Bishops and Dioceses, Current and Past". Catholic-Hierarchy. Retrieved 2012-11-12.
- Malalas, Chronogr., XVIII, in P.G., XCVII, 543, cited in Bothrys - Catholic Encyclopedia article
- (Menander, in Josephus, Ant, VIII, xiii, 2), cited in Bothrys - Catholic Encyclopedia article
- Malalas, Chronogr., XVIII, in P.G., XCVII, 704 , cited in Bothrys - Catholic Encyclopedia article
- "The historical earthquakes of Syria: an analysis of large and moderate earthquakes from 1365 B.C. to 1900 A.D.". Earth-prints.org. Retrieved 2012-11-12.
- Batroun.com - Batroun Official Website
- Eparchy of Batrun (Maronite) - from catholic-hierarchy.org
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