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The area designated by the word has changed over time.Classically, Syria lies at the eastern end of the Mediterranean, between Arabia to the south and Asia Minor to the north, stretching inland to include parts of Iraq, and having an uncertain border to the northeast that Pliny the Elder describes as including, from west to east, Commagene, Sophene, and Adiabene.Finds of obsidian tools from Anatolia are evidences of early trade relations.Cities of Hamoukar and Emar played an important role during the late Neolithic and Bronze Age.
Ugaritic was a Semitic language loosely related to the Canaanite languages, and developed the Ugaritic alphabet, considered to be the world's earliest known alphabet.It gained de-jure independence as a parliamentary republic on 24 October 1945, when Republic of Syria became a founding member of the United Nations, an act which legally ended the former French Mandate – although French troops did not leave the country until April 1946.The post-independence period was tumultuous, and a large number of military coups and coup attempts shook the country in the period 1949–71.Archaeologists have demonstrated that civilization in Syria was one of the most ancient on earth, perhaps preceded by only those of Mesopotamia.
Gifts from Pharaohs, found during excavations, confirm Ebla's contact with Egypt.
In 1958, Syria entered a brief union with Egypt called the United Arab Republic, which was terminated by the 1961 Syrian coup d'état.