Striking view of the City of Tyre, from De Bruyn's Reizen van Cornelis de Bruyn . . . .
Cornelius van Bruyn (1652-1726) was a painter who traveled through the Holy Land and other portions of Asia. On reaching Ottoman controlled territory he had to disguise his activities due to a particularily repressive period of Ottoman rule in which foreigners were regarded with suspicion and the making of "graven images" was prohibited.
Tyre was founded around 2750 BC according to Herodotus and was originally built as a walled city upon the mainland. Phoenicians from Tyre settled in houses around Memphis, south of the temple of Hephaestus in a district called the Tyrian Camp. Tyre's name appears on monuments as early as 1300 BC. Philo of Byblos (in Eusebius) quotes the antiquarian authority Sanchuniathon as stating that it was first occupied by Hypsuranius. Sanchuniathon's work is said to be dedicated to "Abibalus king of Berytus"-possibly the Abibaal who was king of Tyre.
There are ten Amarna letters dated 1350 BC from the mayor, Abimilku, written to Akenaten. The subject is often water, wood, and the Habiru overtaking the countryside of the mainland, and how it affected the island-city.
It is stated in the Bible that Jesus visited the region of Tyre and Sidon and healed a Gentile and from this region many came forth to hear him preaching. A congregation was founded here soon after the death of Saint Stephen, and Paul of Tarsus, on his return from his third missionary journey, spent a week in conversation with the disciples there. According to Irenaeus of Lyon in Adversus Haereses, the female companion of Simon Magus came from here.
After a first failed siege in 1111, it was captured by the Crusaders in 1124, becoming one of the most important cities of the Kingdom of Jerusalem. It was part of the royal domain, although there were also autonomous trading colonies there for the Italian merchant cities. The city was the site of the archbishop of Tyre, a suffragan of the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem; its archbishops often acceded to the Patriarchate. The most notable of the Latin archbishops was the historian William of Tyre.
After the reconquest of Acre by Richard the Lionheart on July 12, 1191, the seat of the kingdom moved there, but coronations were held in Tyre. In the 13th century, Tyre was separated from the royal domain as a separate crusader lordship. In 1291, it was retaken by the Mameluks which then was followed by Ottoman rule before the modern state of Lebanon was declared in 1920.
Cornelis de Bruyn , 1652-c.1726 was a Dutch portrait painter and traveler.
De Bruyn painted for some years in Italy, where he was known, in Rome, as Adonis. Bruyn is remembered chiefly for the records of his extensive travels in Egypt, Persia, India, and other countries, illustrated with his own designs.