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Shemlan saha.jpg
Shemlan is located in Lebanon
Location in Lebanon
Coordinates: 33°47′N 35°33′E / 33.783°N 35.550°E / 33.783; 35.550
Country  Lebanon
Governorate Mount Lebanon Governorate
District Aley District
Time zone EET (UTC+2)
 • Summer (DST) +3 (UTC)

Shemlan (also spelled Chemlane, Shimlan) is a village in the Aley District of the Mount Lebanon Governorate in Lebanon, located about 25 km from Beirut.[1]


Shemlan is first mentioned in history books as early as the 12th century. More recent accounts attribute Shemlan as being part of the land belonging to the Shehab Family. In the 19th century, this land was donated to the Antonine Monks. Over the years, Shemlan's was inhabited by the Jabbour's, Hitti's, Moukaddem's, Tabib's and Farajallah's many of which emigrated during the civil war.

Shemlan's strategic location overlooking Beirut International Airport and its diverse political make-up made Shemlan a fierce battleground during the 1958 civil war and the Israeli invasion of Lebanon.[disambiguation needed]

In 1947, the British Government opened the Middle East Centre for Arabic Studies in Shemlan. This school gained a reputation as being a "spy school" because many of its graduates worked for the C.I.A. or Britain's Foreign Office.

Notable citizens[edit]

Shemlan's most famous resident is Philip Khuri Hitti, a renowned author and professor on the Middle East. Other notable citizens are the people from the Moukaddem family, who at one point owned more than half of the village, also owning a hotel which has seen many famous faces due to its owners' social power.


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External links[edit]

  • Shimlan - official municipality website (English)

Coordinates: 33°47′N 35°33′E / 33.783°N 35.550°E / 33.783; 35.550