), a maritime city of Phoenicia mentioned by Pliny in connection with Marathus and Antaradus, N. of Tripolis, Orthosia, and the river Eleutherus (5.20).
It is placed by Ptolemy between the mouth of the Eleutherus and Orthosia, and, if the figures can be trusted, 10′ west of the former, 14′ north; in the same latitude with Orthosia (i. e. 34° 40′), but 40′ east of it, which would seem either to imply an ignorance of the coast, or to intimate that Simyra lay at some distance from the shore, and that the Eleutherus ran southward to the sea. Strabo says that it was occupied by the Aradians, together with the neighbouring Marathus (xvi. p. 753), apparently placing it north of the Eleutherus.
In addition to what has been said under MARATHUS
and in confirmation of the identification there attempted, the following may be cited from Shaw, and will serve to illustrate the situation of Simyra: “The ancient Marathus may be fixed at some ruins near the Serpent Fountain,
which make, with Rout-wadde
and Tortosa, almost an equilateral triangle. About 5 miles from the river Akker,
and 24 to the SSE. of Tortosa, there are other considerable ruins known by the name of Sumrah,
with several rich plantations of mulberry and other fruit trees growing in and round about them.
These, from the very name and situation, can be no other than the remains of the ancient Simyra . . . the seat formerly of the Zemarites. Pliny 5.20
) makes Simyra a city of Coelesyria, and acquaints us that Mount Libanus ended there to the northward; but as Sumrah
lies in the Jeune
(i. e. the great plain), 2 leagues distant from that mountain, this circumstance will better fall in with Arca, where Mount Libanus is remarkably broken off and discontinued.” (Travels,
pp. 268, 269.)
The ruins of Area are 5 miles E. of Sumrah,
and 2 leagues WSW. of Area
is the Nahr-el-Berd,
the Cold River, which Shaw and others identify with the Eleutherus.
It is manifest how irreconcilable all this is with Ptolemy and other ancient geographers. [ELEUTHERUS; ORTHOSIA; MARATHUS.]