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Marjayoun is located in Lebanon
Location in Lebanon
Coordinates: 33°21′30″N 35°35′20″E / 33.35833°N 35.58889°E / 33.35833; 35.58889Coordinates: 33°21′30″N 35°35′20″E / 33.35833°N 35.58889°E / 33.35833; 35.58889
Grid position 135/158 L
Country Lebanon
Governorate Nabatieh Governorate
District Maryajoun
Elevation 860 m (2,822 ft)
Population (2006)
 • Total 3,000[1]
 • Religions Greek Orthodoxy, Maronite Catholicism, Greek Catholicism, Shia Islam, Sunni Islam, Druze
Time zone EET (UTC+2)
 • Summer (DST) EEST (UTC+3)

Marjayoun (Arabic: مرجعيون‎‎), also Marj 'Ayoun, Marjuyun, or Marjeyoun - meaning "meadow of springs") is both a Lebanese town (also known as Jdeideh / Jdeida / Jdeidet Marjeyoun) and an administrative district, Marjeyoun District, in the Nabatieh Governorate in Southern Lebanon.


It is 860 metres (2,822 ft) above sea level, and is located on the west side of the Rift Valley Bank just across from the ancient regional capital, Caesarea Philippi, which was located at the foot of Mt. Hermon on the east side of the Rift Valley. It is not to be confused with the Banias Springs at Caesarea Philippi.

Marjeyoun is on a hill facing Mount Hermon to the East, Beaufort Castle, the 1000-year-old Crusader Castle above the Litani River and overlooking Mount Amel (Jabal Amel) to the West, the summits of Rihan and Niha and the rest of the Mount Lebanon range to the North and the fertile plains of Marjeyoun that extend southward into the Galilee plains and the Golan Heights.


On June 10, 1179, during the Battle of Marj Ayyun, an Ayyubid army commanded by Saladin defeated a Crusader army led by King Baldwin IV of Jerusalem. The Christian king narrowly escaped being captured in the rout.[citation needed]

The historic Cathedral of Saint Peter is in Marjayoun.[citation needed]

During the Lebanese civil war the town was shelled by Palestinian militias.[citation needed]

It also was the headquarters of the South Lebanon Army, the Israel-affiliated militia that controlled southern Lebanon during Israel's occupation of the region after the 1982 Lebanon War until Israel's withdrawal from the region in 2000.[2]

After cease-fire negotiations stalled on August 10, 2006, Israeli forces took control of Marjayoun.[3] The next day, a convoy of 3,000 people fled from the town. The convoy was attacked by the Israeli Air Force (IAF) at Joub Jannine. The attack on the convoy of approximately 759 vehicles containing Lebanese police, army, civilians, and one Associated Press journalist is known as the Marjayoun convoy incident.


The town of Marjayoun has a mixed population of about 3,000 people. Greek Orthodox Christians, Maronite Christians and Greek Catholic Christians, as well as Sunni Muslims, Druze and Shia Muslims inhabit the town. Christians form a simple majority of the population now, but are losing their primacy in the town as the number of Shia Muslims steadily increase. Despite this demographic decline, Marjayoun still maintains a Christian air. Outside the town, most villages in the surrounding valleys and mountains surrounding are predominantly Shia Muslim.[citation needed]

The district of Marjayoun, which covers a greater area than the town, is largely Shia Muslim. It recognizes three seats in the Lebanese government, two belonging to Shia Muslims and one belonging to Orthodox Christians.[citation needed]


Marjayoun is home to a regional government hospital,[citation needed] and a Lebanese Red Cross First Aid Center.[4]

Notable people[edit]


Marjeyoun is the ancestral home to many families whose origin is well known among the Lebanese communities, many of whom still reside there. These include:

  • Abla
  • Abou Chahla
  • Abou Mrad / Moorad
  • Antoun
  • Barakat / Barkett
  • Bayoud / Bayouth
  • Debaghy / Dabaghi
  • Eid
  • Farhood / Farhoud
  • Farris
  • Farha
  • Gebara / Jebara / Jabara
  • Ghazel / Ghazal
  • Gholmieh / Colmia
  • Ghoutani
  • Hamra
  • Khoury
  • Hashem
  • Horany / Hourani
  • Mahfood
  • Massad / Massaad / Mas'ad
  • Rashid / Rached
  • Samara / Samra / Abou Samra
  • Shadid
  • Soubhie / Soubhia / Sobhie / Soubihe
  • Swaidan / Swaydan / Sweidan / Suiden
  • Tayar / Tayyar / Taiar
  • Toma


  1. ^ Alsalem, Reem (9 September 2006). "Lebanese struggle to repair far wider damage than destroyed houses". Electronic Intifada. Retrieved 16 December 2015. 
  2. ^ Hirst, David. 1999. South Lebanon: The war that never ends? Journal of Palestine Studies 28(3).
  3. ^ - Sources: U.S., France agree on peace plan - August 10, 2006
  4. ^ "Our Centers - First Aid Centers", Lebanese Red Cross


External links[edit]

Photo galleries[edit]