History of Zahle

Zahlé was founded in the early 18th century, in an area whose past reaches back some five millennia. It enjoyed a brief period as the region’s first independent state in the 19th century, when it had its own flag and anthem.

Due to its relative geographic isolation from the local centers of power in Mount Lebanon and Syria, the town did not have any significant allies in the region to fall back on in case of conflicts or attacks. This led its inhabitants to develop a defensive attitude,