both the Libyan capital and the Lebanese port city represent Greek tri- "three" (see tri-) + polis "city" (see polis). In Libya, Tripolis was the name of a Phoenician colony consisting of Oea (which grew into modern Tripoli), Leptis Magna, and Sabratha. Arabic distinguishes them as Tarabulus ash-sham ("Syrian Tripoli") and Tarabulus al-garb ("Western Tripoli").

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