The national museum of Beirut was opened in 1942 with items collected in Lebanon after World War I. About 1300 items are exhibited, dating from prehistoric times to the medieval Mamluk period. Exhibits are in a large hall at ground level, a first floor and the basement. It has a leading collection of ancient Phoenician items. The museum was closed and damaged in the Lebanese civil war (1975-90). After 1992 restoration started and the museum was reopened in 1997.
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