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The Canaanite-Phoenicians are credited with the invention of the Phoenician alphabet.
The cities of Phoenicia were incorporated into the Persian Achaemenid Empire by Cyrus the Great in 539 BCE.
However, a new religious group, the Druze, established themselves in Mount Lebanon as well, generating a religious divide that has lasted for centuries.
During the Crusades, the Maronites re-established contact with the Roman Catholic Church and asserted their communion with Rome.
Foreign troops withdrew completely from Lebanon on 31 December 1946, although the country was subjected to military occupations by Syria that lasted nearly thirty years before being withdrawn in April 2005 as well as Israel for fifteen years before being withdrawn in May 2000.
Despite its small size, the country has developed a well-known culture and has been highly influential in the Arab world, powered by its large diaspora.
The borders of contemporary Lebanon are a product of the Treaty of Sèvres of 1920.After the 7th-century Muslim conquest of the Levant, it was part of the Rashidun, Umayyad, Abbasid Seljuk and Fatimid empires.The crusader state of the County of Tripoli, founded by Raymond IV of Toulouse in 1102, encompassed most of present-day Lebanon, falling to the Mamluk Sultanate in 1289 and finally to the Ottoman Empire in 1517.The region that is now Lebanon, as with the rest of Syria and much of Anatolia, became a major center of Christianity in the Roman Empire during the early spread of the religion.During the late 4th and early 5th century, a hermit named Maron established a monastic tradition focused on the importance of monotheism and asceticism, near the Mediterranean mountain range known as Mount Lebanon.