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The Heart of Lebanon is a book of unique journeys, a diversity of poetry, history, and personal
narrative presented by the Ameen Rihani who traveled and described the characteristics of his native
country. The Heart of Lebanon is a first-hand account in which Rihani wanted the reader to share
with him the joys of experiencing authentic scenes of Lebanese life.
This record of different incidents is like a rainbow displaying the different colors of pleasure and
pain, hope and despair, beauty and homeliness. Rihani registered history, geography, psychology,
sociology, fashion, faith, travel and traditions which, taken together in an amazingly woven tapestry,
led to further knowledge and better understanding of the Lebanese character.
This valuable and genuine information was made available for all readers to get an accurate picture of
the Lebanon of the first half of the twentieth century. No book has revealed the conduct, secrets, and
charms of the Lebanese life in its social, cultural, and literary aspects as thoroughly and beautifully
as this book.
This translation took 18 months of continuous work to complete, and 4 months of revisions. The book of
498 pages was translated by Dr. Henry Melki, and revised by Dr. Paul Jahshan. It was published in April
2005 by Notre Dame University Press in Lebanon under the Murex Series.