From BiblePortal Wikipedia

Fausset's Bible Dictionary [1]

("fishing town"); SIDON or Zidon  Genesis 10:9;  Genesis 10:15;  Joshua 11:8;  Joshua 19:28;  Judges 1:31. Sidon was in Asher ( Isaiah 23:2;  Isaiah 23:4;  Isaiah 23:12). An ancient mercantile city of Phoenicia, in the narrow plain between Lebanon and the Mediterranean, where the mountains recede two miles from the sea; 20 miles N. of Tyre. Now Saida. Old Sidon stands on the northern slope of a promontory projecting a few hundred yards into the sea, having thus "a fine naturally formed harbour" (Strabo). The citadel occupies the hill behind on the south. Sidon is called ( Genesis 10:15) the firstborn of Canaan, and "great Sidon" or the metropolis ( Joshua 11:8). Sidonians is the generic name of the Phoenicians or Canaanites ( Joshua 13:6;  Judges 18:7); in  Judges 18:28 Laish is said to be "far from Sidon," whereas Tyre, 20 miles nearer, would have been specified if it had then been a city of leading importance. (See Tyre .) So in Homer Sidon is named, but not Tyre.

Justin Martyr makes ( Judges 18:3) Tyre a colony planted by Sidon when the king of Ascalon took Sidon the year before the fall of Troy. Tyre is first mentioned in Scripture in  Joshua 19:29 as "the strong city," the "daughter of Sidon" ( Isaiah 23:12.) Sidon and Sidonians are names often subsequently used for Tyre, Tyrians. Thus Ethbaal, king of the Sidonians ( 1 Kings 16:31), is called by Menander in Josephus (Ant. 8:13, section 2) king of the Tyrians. By the time of Zechariah ( Zechariah 9:2) Tyre has the precedency, "Tyrus and Sidon." Sidon revolted from the yoke of Tyre when Shalmaneser's invasion gave the opportunity. Rivalry with Tyre influenced Sidon to submit without resistance to Nebuchadnezzar. Its rebellion against the Persian Artaxerxes Ochus entailed great havoc on its citizens, Tennes its king proving traitor. Its fleet helped Alexander the Great against Tyre (Arrian, Anab. Al., 2:15).

Augustus took away its liberties. Its population is now 5,000. Its trade and navigation have left it for Beirut. It was famed for elaborate embroidery, working of metals artistically, glass, the blowpipe, lathe, and graver, and cast mirrors. (Pliny 36:26, H. N. 5:17;  1 Kings 5:6 , "Not Any Can Skill To Hew Timber Like Unto The Sidonians".) Their seafaring is alluded to ( Isaiah 23:2). Self indulgent ease followed in the train of their wealth, so that "the manner of the Sidonians" was proverbial ( Judges 18:7).. Sidon had her own king ( Jeremiah 25:22;  Jeremiah 27:3). Sidonian women in Solomon's harem seduced him to worship Ashtoreth "the goddess of the Sidonians" ( 1 Kings 11:1;  1 Kings 11:4;  2 Kings 23:13).

Joel reproves Sidon and Tyre for selling children of Judah and Jerusalem to the Grecians, and threatens them with a like fate, Judah selling their sons and daughters to the Sabeans. So Ezekiel ( Ezekiel 28:22-24) threatens Sidon with pestilence and blood in her streets, so that she shall be no more a pricking brier unto Israel. Jesus went once to the coasts of Tyre and Sidon ( Matthew 15:21). Paul touched at Sidon on his voyage from Caesarea to Rome ( Acts 27:3); by Julius' courteous permission Paul there "went unto his friends to refresh himself." Tyre and Sidon's doom shall be more tolerable in the day of judgment than that of those who witnessed Christ's works and teaching, yet repented not ( Matthew 11:21-22). On a coin of the age of Antiochus IV Tyre claims to be "mother of the Sidonians," being at that time the capital city.

Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament [2]

(Σιδών, ethnic Σιδώνιοι)

Sidon, called ‘Great Zidon’ ( Joshua 11:8), was one of the maritime cities of Phcenicia, about 25 miles N. of Tyre, its ‘rival in magnitude, fame, and antiquity’ (Strabo, xvi. ii. 22). After the coming of Alexander the Great, whom Sidon rapturously welcomed and Tyre frantically opposed, the two cities shared the same political fortunes, being for two centuries bones of contention between the Greek kings of Syria in the north and Egypt in the south. So long, however, as their civic autonomy was secure, their factories busy, their overseas traffic prosperous, the quarrels of their alternate overlords did not greatly trouble them. And, while their wealth was apparently almost as great as ever, they added a new interest to life by learning the language and assimilating the culture of Greece. They were not now a mere race of merchant princes or pedlars, wholly absorbed in getting and spending. Strabo says that in his time-the beginning of our era-the Sidonians not only ‘cultivate science and study astronomy and arithmetic, to which they are led by the application of numbers and night sailing, each of which concerns the merchant and seaman,’ but there are ‘distinguished philosophers, natives of Sidon, as Bcethus, with whom I studied the philosophy of Aristotle, and Diodotus his brother’ (xvi. ii. 24).

The two sister cities now consistently advocated a policy of peace with all their neighbours. Not possessing a fraction of the army and navy with which they once defied empires, they could no longer assert themselves even when they were in the right. When Herod Agrippa was ‘highly displeased with the Tyrians and Sidonians’ ( Acts 12:20), they indulged in no useless heroies. Raising no question as to whether the king’s displeasure was just or not, and facing the plain fact that ‘their country was fed from the king’s country,’ they looked about for a friend at Court and humbly asked for peace. If there was any thought of peace with honour, it was suppressed. Dependents could not afford to be angry, and the king could do no wrong. To this had great Sidon and proud Tyre now come.

No details are given of our Lord’s visit to Sidon, though it is definitely stated that He came through it, or at least its surrounding territory (reading διά not καί in  Mark 7:31, with the best Manuscripts), on His way to Decapolis, which He probably reached by the highway over the Lebanon to Damascus (see H. J. Holtzmann, Die Synoptiker3, 1901 [Handkommentar zum NT], and A. B. Bruce, Expositor’s Greek Testament, ‘Mark,’ 1897, in loc). Nothing is known of the actual introduction of Christianity into Sidon. One of its bishops attended the Council of Nicaea in a.d. 325.

‘Sidonian’ was originally an ethnic name like ‘Hittite,’ Sidon and Heth being named together as sons of Canaan in  Genesis 10:15. In Homer ‘Sidonia’ is equivalent to Phcenicia and ‘Sidonian’ to Phcenician. In the Latin poets, too, when the adjective qualifies such words as ‘Dido’ (Virg. aen. xi. 74), ‘nautae,’ ‘rates,’ ‘murex,’ ‘vestis,’ ‘chlamys,’ it means Phcenician. The modern town, called by the Arabs Saida, has about 15,000 inhabitants. Some very remarkable sarcophagi have been found in the necropolis to the S.E. of the town.

Literature.-E. Robinson, Biblical Researches in Palestine2, 3 vols., 1856, ii. 478 ff.; O. Hamdy-Bey and T. Reinach, La Nécropole royale de Sidon, 1892-96; C. Baedeker, Palestine and Syria2, 1894.

James Strahan.

Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary [3]

or ZIDON, a celebrated city and port of Phenicia, and one of the most ancient cities in the world; as it is supposed to have been founded by Sidon, the eldest son of Canaan, which will carry it up to above two thousand years before Christ. But if it was founded by Sidon, his descendants were driven out by a body of Phenician colonists, or Cushim from the east; who are supposed either to have given it its name, or to have retained the old one in compliment to their god Siton, or Dagon. Its inhabitants appear to have early acquired a preeminence in arts, manufactures, and commerce; and from their superior skill in hewing timber, by which must be understood their cutting it out and preparing it for building, as well as the mere act of felling it, Sidonian workmen were hired by Solomon to prepare the wood for the building of his temple. The Sidonians are said to have been the first manufacturers of glass; and Homer often speaks of them as excelling in many useful and ingenious arts, giving them the title of Πολυδαιδαλοι . Add to this, they were, if not the first shipwrights and navigators, the first who ventured beyond their own coasts, and in those early ages engrossed the greatest part of the then commerce of the world. The natural result of these exclusive advantages to the inhabitants of Sidon was, a high degree of wealth and prosperity; and content with the riches which their trade and manufactures brought them, they lived in ease and luxury, trusting the defence of their city and property, like the Tyrians after them, to hired troops; so that to live in ease and security, is said in Scripture to be after the manner of the Sidonians. In all these respects, however, Sidon was totally eclipsed by her neighbour and rival, Tyre; whose more enterprising inhabitants pushed their commercial dealings to the extremities of the known world, raised their city to a rank in power and opulence unknown before, and converted it into a luxurious metropolis, and the emporium of the produce of all nations. After the subversion of the Grecian empire by the Romans, Sidon fell into the hands of the latter; who, to put an end to the frequent revolt of the inhabitants, deprived it of its freedom. It then fell successively under the power of the Saracens, the Seljukian Turks, and the sultans of Egypt; who, in 1289, that they might never more afford shelter to the Christians, destroyed both it and Tyre. But it again somewhat revived, and has ever since been in the possession of the Ottoman Turks.

American Tract Society Bible Dictionary [4]

In the Old Testament  Genesis 49:13 , and is believed to have been founded by Zidon, the eldest son of Canaan,  Genesis 10:15   49:13 . In the time of Homer, the Zidonians were eminent for their trade and commerce, their wealth and prosperity, their skill in navigation, astronomy, architecture, and for their manufactures of glass, etc. They had then a commodious harbor, now choked with sand and inaccessible to any but the smallest vessels. Upon the division of Canaan among the tribes by Joshua, Great Zidon fell to the lot of Asher,  Joshua 11:8   19:28; but that tribe never succeeded in obtaining possession,  Judges 1:31   3:3   10:12 .

The Zidonians continued long under their own government and kings, though sometimes tributary to the kings of Tyre. They were subdued successively by the Babyloniaus, Egyptians, Seleucidae, and Romans the latter of whom deprived them of their freedom. Many of the inhabitants of Sidon became followers of our Savior,  Mark 3:8 , and he himself visited their freedom. Many of them also resorted to him in Galilee,  Luke 6:17 . The gospel was proclaimed to the Jews at Sidon after the martyrdom of Stephen,  Acts 11:19 , and there was a Christian church there, when Paul visited it on his voyage to Rome,  Acts 27:3 .

It is at present, like most of the other Turkish towns in Syria, dirty and full of ruins, thought it still retains a little coasting trade, and has five thousand inhabitants. It incurred the judgments of God for its sins,  Ezekiel 28:21-24 , though less ruinously than Tyre. Our Savior refers to both cities, in reproaching the Jews as more highly favored and less excusable than they,  Matthew 11:22 . Saida occupies an elevated promontory, projecting into the sea, and defended by walls. Its environs watered by a stream from their beautiful gardens, and fruit trees of every kind.

Bridgeway Bible Dictionary [5]

The Mediterranean seaports of Tyre and Sidon were the two most important towns of Phoenicia. The Bible frequently mentions the two towns together as a way of referring to Phoenicia in general ( Ezra 3:7;  Isaiah 23:1;  Isaiah 23:4;  Zechariah 9:2;  Mark 7:24). Sometimes mention of only one of the towns is sufficient. For example, Tyre, being the larger and more prosperous port, may have symbolized the greed and arrogance that Phoenicia as a whole developed because of its international shipping activity ( Isaiah 23:1;  Isaiah 23:8;  Isaiah 23:17;  Ezekiel 27:3;  Ezekiel 27:25;  Ezekiel 28:5;  Ezekiel 28:9;  Ezekiel 28:16). In the same way Sidon, being a dominant religious centre, fittingly symbolized the corrupt Phoenician religion that at times troubled Israel ( Judges 10:6;  1 Kings 16:31-33). (For details of Sidon’s commerce, religion and history see Phoenicia .)

Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary [6]

SIDON or Zidon. A fishing town made memorable from our Lord's occasional visits there. Some derive it from the word Tzada, to fish. It was an antient place. (See  Joshua 11:8;  Matthew 15:21)

Easton's Bible Dictionary [7]

 Genesis 10:15,19 Matthew 11:21,22 Luke 6:17Zidon

Smith's Bible Dictionary [8]

Si'don. The Greek form of the Phoenician name, Zidon . See Zidon .

People's Dictionary of the Bible [9]

Sidon.  Genesis 10:15, A.V. See Zidon.

Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible [10]

SIDON . See Zidon.

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature [11]

( Σιδών ), the Greek form ( 2 Esdras 1:11;  Judith 2:28;  1 Maccabees 5:15;  Matthew 11:21-22;  Matthew 15:21;  Mark 3:8;  Mark 7:24;  Mark 7:31;  Luke 4:26;  Luke 6:17;  Luke 10:13-14;  Acts 12:20;  Acts 28:3) of the city called in the Heb. (but in the A. V. " Sidon," also in  Genesis 10:15;  Genesis 10:19) ZIDON (See Zidon) (q.v.', or rather Tsidon.

The Nuttall Encyclopedia [12]

An ancient Phoenician city on the E. of the Mediterranean, 20 m. N. of Tyre, with an extensive commerce; was famed for its glass and purple dye; also suffered many a reverse of fortune.

Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature [13]

Si´don [ZIDON]