Temple of Bel, Palmyra, Syria.
Ancient city, Syria, northeast of Damascus
, at the modern city of Tadmur. Said to have been built by King Solomon
, it became prominent in the 3rd century BC
, when the Seleucid dynasty
made the road through Palmyra one of the routes of east-west trade. Under Roman control by the reign of Tiberius
, it briefly regained autonomy in the 3rd century AD
under the Arab queen Zenobia
. The main military station on the road that linked Damascus to the Euphrates River
, it was conquered by the Muslims in 634. Inscriptions in the Aramaic language
supply information on the city's trade with India via the Persian Gulf and with Egypt, Rome, and Syria. Ancient ruins reveal the city's plan.
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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.