Bterram a beautiful village of Lebanon with thousands of years of history, located
among the olive trees and surrounded by the White Mountains.
- Middle Paleolithic site
- Phoenician Sanctuary
- Crusader religious site
- Ottoman rule (Shehab's Emirs)
- Bterram meanings
- Local production
- School and government
Middle Paleolithic site
Bterram is very rich in old civilizations and the oldest goes back to the Middle
Paleolithic Ages, which was a hundred thousand years ago. Many expeditions
have found artifacts from Paleolithic Ages in Wadi keoue around Bterram. To
read more information about these discoveries, please go to Keoue section
Moreover, Bterram has a very old underground temple called Eshmunit,
which is composed of eight rooms (one big and seven small) all carved in
the rock and accessible through 11 rocky stairs. The sanctuary is
believed to be more than 3000 year old and dedicated to the consort of
the Phoenician god Eshmun. Read more!
Crusader religious site
Bterram has two old churches; one dedicated to Saints Cosmas & Damian and one to the Virgin
Mary (Saydit El-Rass, right) served by the priest Youhanna Saoud.
El Saydi is thought to be built by the crusaders during the same time of Balamand church. The
historian Asaad Rustom mentioned that the patriarch Macarius has visited the church in
Saints Cosmas and Damian were twins, born in Arabia and had become eminent for their skill in
the science of medicine. Being Christians, they were filled with the spirit of charity and never
took money for their services. By conveying great love, they won the hearts of their patients as
they taught them about the Faith. Their feast day is September 26th. They are patron saints of
Ottoman rule (Shehab's Emirs)
In the beginning of the 1600's, the Ottoman granted the Lebanese Emirs a semi autonomous
status. First, the Maans, (Fakhr ad Din I and II) ruled between 1120-1697. The Shihabs
succeeded the Maans in 1697. They originally lived in the Hawran region of southwestern Syria
and settled in Wadi at Taim in southern Lebanon. The most prominent among them was Bashir II
(1). During the Shehab's reign of Lebanon Mountains (1697-1842), Bterram used to be an
important governmental center (2).
(2): Kamous Lubnan, Jumah Wadih Nicholas Hanna, First print 1927, Assalam Eds)
The name Bterram (Bturan, Beturan, Btouram) is known since the twelfth century as evidenced
by Arabic and Syriac manuscripts written by the Lord of Bterram, Galterius of Buturan and
retained at the National Library of Paris and the Libraries of Vatican and Oxford (Bibliothèques
et Conservation du Patrimoine Graphique au Liban).
The meaning of Bterram was given many significances. According to some sources, the Arabic
meaning of this village is "Wind of the Rock" or the rocky wind. According to another reference,
Bterram is originated from "bet" "tur" "ram" or "House of the High Mountain".
However, more recently Dr Aksam Merched has given a different dimension to the meaning of
the village. By using the original name Bturan (Beturan) he explained that Bturan means “beth”
“Turan” refering to “the house” or “the temple” of “Turan”, which is a name of Astarte, mainly
used by the Etruscans. Astarte is the consort of the Phoenician god Eshmun. Following this new
analysis, Bterram or Bturan meaning “Temple of Astarte” is named after the mysterious
Eshmunit sanctuary. Read more!
Bterram is largely known for its grapes and olive fields which have
been mentioned in a sculpted statement on the gate of a very old
school, Khairieh Hossen School build in 1316 near the Mansouri
Mosque in Tripoli .
Between 1885 and 1940, Bterram used to have two factories of
natural silk production. One chimney used to dissolve the cocoons of
silk is still present to these days (right picture). During the years
1941-1942, Bterram had two famous potter's workshops.
Olive oil is the most traditional production. Nowadays, people use only
one traditional press for its extraction.
The major productions of Bterram are related to agriculture: olive oil,
soap (see below), grapes, wines, arak, honey ... The cultured land is
estimated to be 5.3 km square .
One major industrial plant produces pasta, vermicelli, rice powder, and
roasted coffee bean (own by Michel Isaac Serhan). A new factory for
pasta is build between in Bterram near Bdebba (own by Mehyou).
Khalil Salem High School of Bterram receives students from all over El-Koura. Mr Simon Khoury
now directs the Elementary section, after many years of service by Mr. Michel Serhan. Mr. Suheil
Serhan has taken the direction of the Secondary section of the school after Mr. Edmon Nasser's
long term service.
Universal School of Lebanon is also located in Bterram.
Universal School of Lebanon