The Romans dubbed the city Palmyra, city of the Palms -
the locals retains the name of Tadmor, city of the dates -
Tadmur in the Bible
oasis (6 km2) on the northern edge of the syrian desert Badiet es Sham - 240 km N E of Damascus
according to the tradition, was founded by Salomon King of Israel - in the Bible it is called Tadmur,
mentioned in assyrian manuscripts back to the XXth century BC
prosperous caravan center (water supplies), important link on the old “silk road” in the 2nd cent. BC, became roman outpost in the desert - major “city state” within the roman empire in the Ist cent. AD
Odenathus earned gratitude of Rome by freeing the emperor Valerian from capture by the Persians, & regained in 267 roman possessions lost to Zhapur I (241-272) of Persia
Palmyra’s downfall began in 266, upon the assassination of Odenathus. His 2nd wife, the famous half-Greek/half Arab Zenobia, took over in the name of her minor son.
Claiming to be descended from Cleopatra, woman of ambition & ability, fluent in Greek, Latin, Aramaic & Egyptian, she effectively turned Palmyra into an independent empire, in 270 invaded Egypt, had coins minted in Alexandria, bearing her image and that of her son.
The Emperor Aurelian defeated her forces In Antioch & Emesa (Homs) in 271, he besieged Palmyra itself. In 274,
Zenobia was carted off to Rome as Aurelian’s trophy & was paraded in the streets, bound in gold chains, bearing all her jewels. She spent the rest of her days in Rome, some say she chose to starve to death rather than remain captive
The city fell to the Muslims in 634 & was finally & completely destroyed by a devastating earthequake in 1089.