’ll bet you know why I read this little informative book, no?
Actually, this one came from a lady on my bus, a dynamic Vietnamese woman who got me to ride Critical Mass with her and her husband. I couldn’t place his nationality but when we saw each other on the bus again, she told me he was Lebanese. And that they were going to see his family soon. And with that, I started babbling about Tyre (see my books on the beg-link, below). Turns out she was going there. And she picked up this nice small reference book that I’d have killed for back when I was ripping apart library shelves (yes, it was that long ago, children) trying to find anything I could on Carthage and Tyre. Well, Carthage I’ve been to. Tyre, no.
But this book took me there.
Author Ali Khalil Badawi supervised the later excavations of the city. He provided a neat explanation of the city’s long history, its people, its rulers (and conquerors, and ransom-demanders), and its occasional destruction. The book provides sharp little maps showing the layout of the north and south ends of the island and the various eras of ruins to be found in each. There are beautiful photographs that, with a little imagination, can let you see the peoples of history, the traders, sea-voyagers and dye-makers, moving through its columned marketplaces, speaking their tongues from around the known world. For its small size (142 photograph-heavy pages) it contains a sizable volume of information.
Like I said, I’d have killed to get a book like this back when I was doing my historical writing.
Worth a look. If I ever get to Tyre, I’ll buy a box-full of them to give to my friends.