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Near East Kingdoms

Ancient Central Levant States


Dor (Dora)

A minor Canaanite city state during the thirteenth century BC, Dor was located on the coast (about 30km south of modern Haifa). Now know as Tell Dor (or el-Burj), the site is the focus of an ongoing excavation project. Occupation began around 2000 BC, but the city's documentary history doesn't begin until the Late Bronze Age (1550-1200 BC).

The Tjekker were one of the Sea Peoples who ravaged much of the Mediterranean coastline in the Bronze Age collapse of around 1200 BC. Groups of them could later be found inhabiting some cities in northern Canaan including Dor, which they had seized and subsequently ruled as a city state, turning it into a large and well-fortified city. They then came under attack by the incoming Israelites in the twelfth century BC, and the city was largely subdued, becoming the capital of the Sharon province.

c.1200 - 1150 BC

Groups of Tjekker invade northern Canaan and settle there. One group seizes the city state of Dor.

c.1160s BC


Defeated by the Israelites.

c.1050 BC


Prince of Dor.

c.1050? - 990s BC

In the mid-eleventh century the city is destroyed by fire, with a huge layer of ash and debris being left behind. It seems likely that the city comes into contact with the Phoenicians to the north while they are expanding their own territory, and Dor suffers as a result. The city is reoccupied to a minor extent, twice, before being occupied by Phoenicians (and it is probably they who rebuild it).

c.990s BC

The city falls to David of Israel, and the Tjekker are not mentioned again in history.

734 BC

The city becomes a vassal of Assyria. Evidence for the city's destruction by its conquerors is limited and seems to be localised to the area of the city gate. A new, Assyrian-styled, gate is built, the fortifications are renovated, and commerce and industry recommence on a larger scale than ever. It is probably the capital of the Assyrian province of Du'ru. The city is predominantly governed by Phoenicians, especially during the Achaemenid period when Sidon rules here. It survives into the Crusader period, before fading from history.