Are the Phoenicians still around?


Ad Honorem
Sep 2007
Lebanese are the Phoenicians. The Phoenicians originated from the ancient Canaanites in the Levant.
That's an over-generalization. Phoenician-ness is a forced identity for the Lebanese to distinct themselves from the surrounding Arabic-speaking peoples, mainly Syrians (also an imposed identity) after the WWI, i.e. partitioning of the Ottoman Empire and colonization of the Middle East by the Western powers. We don't know much even about the Phoenician language, only some fragments and their alphabet, which birthed several alphabets and abjads used today such as Arabic, Aramaic, Hebraic, Greek, Latin, and Cyrillic. They spoke some Semitic language, that's all. Following the Arabization of the Levant, mostly Aramaic-speaking peoples of the region adopted Arabic as their native tongue. So it is possible that the gene pool of Lebanon still has Phoenician but that's like claiming Lydians still live in Turkey. However, the Phoenician influence on surrounding peoples like Greeks is underrated and under-referenced, I think.
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No, the Phoenecians were a cultural group that died out over two thousand years ago. Lebanon is where they were primarily located - but to say “The Lebanese are the Phoenecians people” would not be accurate.

As well, the Phoenician culture originated on the Arabian peninsula according ancient historians; it prospered most in Lebanon and Israel, and reached at least as far as Spain.
Phoencians were INDIGENOUS people of the LEVANT originating from the Haplogroup J2 carrying CANAANITES:
Archaeogenetics of the Near East - Wikipedia


Ad Honorem
Oct 2012
They were not a huge ethnicity to start with. Merely a seafaring group so well-noticeable.
Sidon was destroyed by Alexander the Great, and Tyre met even a worse destiny.
Carthage was destroyed by the Romans. So I think that there was little of genetic pool left to mix, so probably some Lebanese carry 1% - 3% of Phoenician genome, but this is all
Carthage wasn't the only city founded by Phoenicians in North Africa, and those cities not only survived the Roman conquest but thrived under Roman rule. The Roman emperor Septimus Severus was either of Punic (Phoenician) or Punicized Libyan ancestry.

Certainly there are many people in North Africa today with partial Phoenician ancestry. The Punic people weren't annihilated by the Romans or later conquerors. They were assimilated by other peoples of North Africa like the Berbers or Arabs. There were some Phoenician colonies in Iberia as well, so it's likely some modern Spanish or Portuguese people also have some Phoenician ancestry.

The same is also true of the Levant. Alexander the Great didn't annihilate the Phoenicians.

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