Map - Hasbaya (Hâsbaïya)

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Hasbaya (Hâsbaïya)

Hasbeya or Hasbeiya (حاصبيا) is a town in Lebanon, situated at the foot of Mount Hermon, overlooking a deep amphitheatre from which a brook flows to the Hasbani. In 1911, the population was about 5000.

Hasbaya is the capital of the Wadi El Taym, a long fertile valley running parallel to the western foot of Mount Hermon. Watered by the Hasbani river, the low hills of Wadi El Taym are covered with rows of silver-green olive trees, its most important source of income. Villagers also produce honey, grapes, figs, prickly pears, pine nuts and other fruit.

Mount Hermon, 2745 metres high, is a unifying presence throughout the Wadi El Taym. This imposing mountain held great religious significance for the Canaanites and Phoenicians, who called it the seat of the All High. The Romans, recognising it as a holy site, built many temples on its slopes. The Some identify Hasbaya with the Old Testament's "Baal – Hermon," while in the New Testament the mountain is the site of the transfiguration of Jesus.

Hasbaya is mainly inhabited by the Druze, with some Christians. In 1826, an American Protestant mission was established in the town. The castle in Hasbaya was held by the crusaders under Count Oran, but in 1171 the Emirs of the Chehab family captured it after defeating the crusaders in a number of battles. In 1205 this family was confirmed in the lordship of the town and district, which they held till the present time.

Near Hasbaya were bitumen pits which were worked in antiquity and in the 19th century up to 1914. Production may have peaked at about 500 tons/year. To the north, at the source of the Hasbani, the ground is volcanic. Some travellers have attempted to identify Hasbeya with the biblical Baal-Gad or Baal-Hermon.

The town of Hasbaya is the centre of the district and can be reached from Marjeyun across the Hasbani bridge, or from Rachaya. It is one of the most important and oldest towns of the Mount Hermon area. This mountain peak, also called Jabal al Sheikh, rises east of Hasbaya. The town is watered by a small tributary of the Hasbani River.

Hasbaya is an important historical site, but little of its ancient monuments survive. The oldest standing ruins date to the Crusader period. After the conquest of the area by the Chehabs Emirs in 1172, they fortified the square tower of the Crusader fort and transformed it into a big palace similar to Italian palaces and citadels of the Renaissance. On both sides of its main entrance is the lion, the emblem of the Shehab family. The upper floor has 65 rooms, and the largest is decorated with beautiful wall paintings. The mosque was built in the 13th century and has a beautiful hexagonal minaret.

Hasbaya keeps its traditions alive and its workshops are still producing traditional clothing such as abayas, caftans and turbans.

In the direction of Marjeyun and also part of the Hasbaya Caza (3 km away from the town), there is Souk al Khan, which is located inside a pine forest at the crossing of Hasbaya, Rashaya, Kawkaba and Marjeyun roads.

There lies the ruins of an old khan where Ali, son of Fakhreddin Maan, was killed in a battle with the Ottoman army. In this khan, a popular weekly market held very Tuesday is visited by traders and visitors from all over the area. Near this site flows the Hasbani, a tributary of the Jordan River, which is under Israeli control. On the banks of this river are scattered outdoor restaurants serving delicious Lebanese food and trout. 

Map - Hasbaya (Hâsbaïya)

Latitude / Longitude : 33° 23' 52" N / 35° 41' 6" E | Time zone : UTC+2:0 / UTC+3 | Currency : LBP | Telephone : 961  

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Country - Lebanon

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Lebanon (لبنان ; Lebanese pronunciation: ; Liban), officially known as the Lebanese Republic (الجمهورية اللبنانية ; Lebanese pronunciation: ; République libanaise), is a country in Western Asia. It is bordered by Syria to the north and east and Israel to the south, while Cyprus is west across the Mediterranean Sea. Lebanon's location at the crossroads of the Mediterranean Basin and the Arabian hinterland facilitated its rich history and shaped a cultural identity of religious and ethnic diversity. At just 10,452 km 2 (4,036 sq. mi.), it is the smallest recognized sovereign state on the mainland Asian continent.

The earliest evidence of civilization in Lebanon dates back more than seven thousand years, predating recorded history. Lebanon was the home of the Canaanites/Phoenicians and their kingdoms, a maritime culture that flourished for over a thousand years (c. 1550–539 BC). In 64 BC, the region came under the rule of the Roman Empire, and eventually became one of the Empire's leading centers of Christianity. In the Mount Lebanon range a monastic tradition known as the Maronite Church was established. As the Arab Muslims conquered the region, the Maronites held onto their religion and identity. However, a new religious group, the Druze, established themselves in Mount Lebanon as well, generating a religious divide that has lasted for centuries. During the Crusades, the Maronites re-established contact with the Roman Catholic Church and asserted their communion with Rome. The ties they established with the Latins have influenced the region into the modern era.
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LBP Lebanese pound لل 2
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AR Arabic language
HY Armenian language
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