Academic papers on Phoenicians

For various reasons the Phoenicians have long been overlooked as a serious subject of study by scholars more interested in the brilliant histories of the Greeks and Romans. As a result it has only been in recent years that a sufficient body of evidence has been collected to show that the Phoenicians did in fact have an identifiable society, and that there was a reasonably complete outline of their history. 

Major turning points in that history of the Phoenician people are explored deeply in the four academic papers shown here. The full text of those papers and their footnoted sources are available on these pages:

Origin of the Phoenicians

See this Origin paper, which was presented at Queen Mary College in London.

The Minoans

See this Minoans paper, which was presented at California State University, Long Beach.

Sea Peoples and the Phoenicians

See this Sea Peoples paper, which was presented at Al Akhawayn University in Ifrane, Morocco.

Punic Wars and Peace

See this Punic Wars paper, which was presented at Marquette University in Milwaukee.

One result of assembling these four revealing views into Phoenician society is that we see Roman and Greek history is not diminished in any way by the fact that Phoenician society existed. Research-paper author Sanford Holst noted, “When their societies were young, the Greeks and the Romans picked up elements from other societies — including the Phoenicians — then made those elements better, and even made them great.” The transcendent role of the Greeks and Romans is not in doubt. In that regard, then, the study of Phoenicians, Etruscans, Egyptians and others can be a good preamble for the study of Greco-Roman history.

Further information

If you would like to experience more of the Phoenician world than you found in this article, the book Phoenicians: Lebanon’s Epic Heritage is recommended. It is deeply researched but also a highly readable exploration.

Going beyond the few traditionally-cited facts, this authoritative work also draws from interviews with leading archaeologists and historians on-site in the lands and islands where the Phoenicians lived and left clues regarding their secretive society.


You can take a look inside this book. See the first pages here.