The Phoenicians had established colonies in Anatolia, Cyprus, the Levant and North Africa by the second millennium B.C., according to the Encyclopaedia Britannica. The Phoenicians are deemed likely to have come from the Persian Gulf, reaching ancient Phoenicia by around 3000 B.C.
The Phoenicians had a notable cultural impact, with their alphabet becoming the basis of the Greek alphabet. They were known as traders and merchants, specializing in ivory and wood and dealing in cloth, dyes, embroideries, wine and wood. The Lebanese Global Information Center states that the Phoenicians built several East Mediterranean cities, including Beirut, Tripoli and Tyre, that remain standing in modern-day Lebanon.