Race Against Time: How luxury developers are wiping out ancient Beirut

A version of this story was published in Monocle Magazine, August 2018 By Habib Battah Just across the skyscraper-lined Bay of Beirut, in the lush foothills of Mount Lebanon, a little-understood civilization lived in caves for thousands of years. Skeletons found at the site known …

Roman city wall removed from Beirut site

A rare and well-preserved ancient Roman wall that once surrounded Beirut has been dismantled. Photography of the site is not allowed, but from the street, a truck-mounted construction crane can be seen hoisting stones out of the major archaeological site in Bachoura, just off the …

Will Renzo Piano’s new tower demolish an ancient city buried under Beirut?

“We will find where you live,”  a watchman yelled at me after taking a picture of ruins on his construction site. He had followed me across the street to issue the threat, claiming to have memorized the license plate number on my car. “Wait and …

New excavations across downtown Beirut, Saifi and Martyr’s Square

Archaeological excavations have been mushrooming across downtown Beirut over recent months, providing a glimpse at how the city looked and functioned in ancient times. Site 1: The most visible and perhaps most interesting of these is a bustling site located near the Saifi neighborhood: The …

How did ancient Beirut get tossed in a pile?

In the shadow of the towers of new Beirut, the ruins of ancient Beirut have literally been dismembered and piled up at the edge of town. It may be hard to believe today, but ancient Berytus was a very prominent city in the Roman empire, …

Ruins cleared near port of Beirut

Following our last post about the vast ruins site uncovered near the “Beirut Digital District” construction site, a reader got in touch and sent these pictures of ruins discovered near the Port of Beirut. Just across the highway from the port area (see shipping trucks …

Ancient ruins uncovered in the ‘digital district’

A wide range of ancient structures have been uncovered in downtown Beirut that may provide important clues to the city’s millennia-old history. The archaeological digs have been going on for at least several months near the construction of the massive multi-tower project known as Beirut …

World’s oldest scale found in Lebanon, on display at AUB

The oldest known scale beam was recently found near Kfaraabida in North Lebanon and is now on display this week at the American University of Beirut Archaeology museum. This groundbreaking find calls into question the assumption that early Levantine settlements were less technologically or economically …

One of world’s oldest cities found in North Lebanon, may become hotel

Perched on a hill along the rocky coast of North Lebanon, archaeologists have uncovered what they believe is one of the world’s oldest city settlements. Archaeologists from the American University of Beirut believe the site dates back to the Early Bronze Age in the third …

New discoveries in Byblos amid resort development

If archaeologists are right, our understanding of Byblos will soon change dramatically.  For years, people have assumed that the ancient city’s Phoenician port was situated in the same area as the current medieval-era harbor, populated by fish restaurants and tourist traps: But new surveys by …