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Stones of Baalbek, Lebanon

The Forgotten Stones of Baalbek, Lebanon


Read Part 1 - Forgotten Stones: Secrets of the Megalithic Quarries

‘The Stone of the South’ at Baalbek, Lebanon is the largest worked monolith on Earth, weighing in at a staggering 1242 tons. It is even heavier than the ‘Stone of the Pregnant Woman’ which weighs an estimated 1000 tons, that sits on the other side of the road in the quarry. Neither of these stones made it to the main ‘Temple of Jupiter’, some 900 metres to the northeast, but some 400-ton and 800-ton stones did make their way to the temple, were raised 20 feet in to the air and were placed with machine-like precision into the foundations of this mighty ancient complex. Last week, Janine Abdel Massih and her team uncovered a further monolith that sits virtually underneath ‘The Stone of the Pregnant Woman’ that was once destined for the main Temple site (see featured image). Until recently, it was buried under a few feet of dirt, and has been measured at 19.6 metres long, 6 metres wide and 5.5 metres thick. " Because we have not yet reached the bottom of the rock to be completely cleared,” Janine Abdel Massih said, “we have no idea of the volume or complete dimension of this ancient stone." (1). The outline of it can be seen in these images, and shows a kind of precision we find in ancient Peru and Egypt. The discovery of this new monolith, just adds another level of mystery to the situation, as it sits virtually ‘under’ the ‘The Stone of the Pregnant Woman’, and would have had to have been lifted out, after this other 1000 ton block was moved.

The massive carved stones of Baalbek

The massive carved stones of Baalbek. Photo source: Glamroz

Baalbek is officially a Roman temple that was built on the foundations of a much earlier site. Some of the foundation stones that make up the main platform weigh in at around 800-1000 tons. However, the true origins of this site are shrouded in mystery, but it is known that the Romans called it Heliopolis - with its namesake in Egypt (that interestingly is connected it to it geodetically - see comment below). The name ‘Baal’ generally means ‘Lord’ or ‘God’, and to the Phoenicians it meant ‘Sun’. The site sits upon a ‘tel’ or occupational mound 1150m above sea level, and has been inhabited since the Early Bronze Age (2,900 - 2,300 BC), with continuous occupation.

Scholars and independent researchers argue that it could have been constructed by the Phoenicians who were known in the Bible as the Canaanites, the people of Canaan (2). It also refers to this area as being inhabited by giants. Also in the Bible, Baalbek appears under the name Baalath, a town re-fortified by Israel's King Solomon, c. 970 BC (3), confirming both its sanctity to Baal at this early date, and its apparent strategic importance on the road to Damascus. (4)

According to Estfan Doweihi, the Maronite Patriarch of Lebanon: “ Tradition states that the fortress of Baalbek... is the most ancient building in the world. Cain, the son of Adam, built it in the year 133 of the creation, during a fit of raving madness. He gave it the name of his son Enoch and peopled it with giants who were punished for their iniquities by the flood.” (5)

It certainly does appear to have been built by Giants, when trying to work out how some of these stones could have been moved in to place. The western wall of the ‘Temple of Jupiter’ contains some of these immense blocks that make up the ‘trilithon’, at least twenty feet above ground level, so how could they have got them from the quarry to the main site, and then placed them so accurately?

The Temple of Jupiter, Baalbek

The Temple of Jupiter, Baalbek

In 1977, Jean-Pierre Adam made a study suggesting the large blocks could have been moved on rollers with machines using capstans and pulley blocks, a process which he suggested could use 512 workers to move a 557-ton block (almost half as heavy as the trilithon blocks) (6). However, this does not explain how they were then lifted in to place. Other estimates say that it would take 40,000 men to move them up to the main temple. There still seems to be a healthy debate about this, so it’s understandable that giants, occult power and even ‘ancient aliens’ have been credited with such an achievement.

An old image depicting the massive stones at Baalbek

An old image depicting the massive stones at Baalbek.

The stones of Baalbek are one of the enduring mysteries of the ages, and it does seem like some special occult power was employed to quarry, lift and transport these immense blocks. Why they decided to use stones of this size has baffled researchers for generations. It would have been so much easier to use smaller blocks and put them together at the site. It now seems clear that the famous mega-blocks were not put in place by the Romans, as they look completely different and appear to come from a much earlier epoch due to the style, weathering and re-use of many of the stones. Author Graham Hancock recently visited Baalbek and the quarry and made this comment about why, if the Romans did build this site, did they not re-use the stones from the quarry? “... the fact that these gigantic, almost finished blocks remain in the quarry and were never sliced up into smaller blocks and used in the general construction of the Temple of Jupiter, suggests to me very strongly that the Romans did not even know they were there. Most probably they had been buried under many metres of sediment for many thousands of years when the Romans appeared on the scene. They made use of the megaliths that were already in place on the already remotely ancient sacred site that would become the Temple of Jupiter -- a handy, massive and convenient platform upon which they could build their temple -- but they knew nothing of the fully cut and shaped but unused megaliths lying deeply buried in the quarry.”(7)


As with many other sites around the world, I propose that these mighty monoliths were left there for a reason. It was part of the ancient tradition to leave the largest stone in the quarry, itself a sanctified zone, a place from where the temple was birthed. Also, the style of masonry employed is similar to what we find on the Giza plateau, an area that was also once called Heliopolis. Baalbek’s connection to Giza is also interesting, as the wooden boats that were found buried on the Giza plateau are made from Cedar-wood, from trees that potentially comes from the famous Cedar forests that once thrived on the slopes that Baalbek sits upon. Baalbek also sits 5 degrees east of Giza, and 4 degrees north, suggesting it may have been a major marker on an ancient survey of the Earth, that also revealed an interesting anomaly that was spotted by Alex Whitaker of “ This very specific separation of both longitudes and latitudes between the two sites has a secondary significance in that the angle created is 51° 51', which is the same angle as that of the exterior faces of the great pyramid at Giza.” (8). 

Either way, the gargantuan monoliths of Baalbek still retain lost secrets of engineering that the ancient stone masons took to their graves.

Map showing Baalbek in relation to Giza (Heliopolis). Image source.

Featured image: The newly discovered monolith sitting to the left of 'The Stone of the Pregnant Woman', Lebanon. Photo source: Glamroz



albertsneij's picture

did you consider that the stones were erectd, originally; then an Earthquake did topple them?


Hugh Newman's picture

Hugh Newman

Hugh Newman is a world explorer, megalithomaniac and author of Earth Grids: The Secret Pattern of Gaia’s Sacred Sites (2008), co-author of Giants On Record: America’s Hidden History, Secrets in the Mounds and the Smithsonian Files with Jim Vieira (2015), and Stone Circles (2017). He... Read More

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