Our Origin & Ancestors

By the late Emile Najeeb Mahfood
Please e-mail webmaster@marjeyoun.net for any additions or corrections

More information about our family:

    Posted Jauary 21, 2007.
    Information was submitted by Adeeb Mahfood, Jamaica
    In one of Philip De Trazi books about the Arab Tribes he mentions only that Mahfouz is from the Ajman Tribe .

    In another book, "The Golden Age of the Syriacs-The Historical Origins of the Bishops of Syriac Archdiocese", he write about Gregarious Isaac Mahfouz saying :
    "He is Isaac son of Abdullah son of priest Abraham Abed-el Jaleel. His mother was Tarazia Mahfouz. He was born in Mousel in the year 1800.
    His parents belonged to Ya3akiba Syriac. When his father married Tarazia, his ancestors were called by the family of Abed el-Jaleel while the ancestors of his wife were named by the Mahfoods.
    His descendants are still known by the latter title until today.

    In a third book by Philip De Trazi he writes:
    "The origin of the Syriac Musil family of Mahfoud goes back to the 16th century. Of the family Musil's Archbishop Gregarious Isaac Mahfoud was notable.
    The Mahfoud is a highborn family well known in all Iraqi regions. A group of the family came to Lebanon and settled in Akura. Some of the descendants of that group moved to Ladikkiya, Palestine and Egypt. All of them joined the Maronites."

    Information was submitted by LuAna Imad Mahfouz, Beruit and Adeeb Mahfood, Jamaica
    The written documents are found in many books. The most important one is Milhim Ibrahim El Boustani". He said that the family Boustani came from the name Moukim Mahfouz and his family name changed because they had land and they used to work in it as gardeners which means Boustani in Arabic. This means that the Boustani family is a branch of the Mahfouz family.

    It is said that the relatives of Mahfouz family: Shalala, Shbeiaa, Latif, and Boustani who most of them are writers and well known from Karkasha (near Bshari) they went to Deir El Kamar in 1560 and Jounieh. Son of Moukim went to Daher Safra (north of Akkar) because it was his original home. Before that, they lived in Jabla (near Latakya).
    It is said that before Jabla, they originated from the Ghassanid Arabs who were the 32 kings of Syria (204-635 AD) who had good relations with Constantinople.

    The Ghassanids originated from Yemen (were of the kings of Yemen) and were of the first to become Christians. Most of the Christians of Middle East are somehow related to these people because they didn't accept to change their beliefs.

    Moukim lived in Karkasha for 40 years. His relatives were spread to many locations. Our family is one of these branches. It is written that the relatives of Moukim spread out in Lebanon. Later on, some from the coast went to Jdeidet Marjeyoun
    In this book, there is a page describing our family in Jdeidet Marjeyoun that mentions Faraj, Eid, Haseeb, and Rizk.

    Information was submitted by Adeeb Mahfood, Jamaica
    From"Mu'jam al Osar wal Ashkhas wa lamahat min Tareekh al-3a3ilat"
    Author: Ahmad Abu Saad.
    Publisher: Dar el-Ilm lilmalaeen.
    Year: 2003.
    Title Translation:
    The Encyclopaedia of Families, Persons & General notes from the History of Families.

    Mahfouz and said Mahfoud.From the masculine names to all, Arabic name, passive participle from Hafiz (verb), it is designated to the one whom is wished that God secures and protects.

    It is the name of a family common between the Shiite Muslims in Hirmil, the Sunni Muslims in Tripoli and Sheikh Muhammad Bakkar and the Christians in Ghazeer, Ghayna, Aqayba,Fatqa,Ghadeer , Sarba in Kisirwan's coast, Damour in Shouf, Khirbit Kanafar in west Bekaa, Jdeidet Marjeyoun, Shebaa, Kfarmishki Rashayya and other villages that we would mention later on.

    The Shiite Muslims from Mahfouz family originated from Fidar Jbail and left for Bakaa and Hirmil (See Al-Mustardrik). Of them was known, Hussein Mahfouz, the sheikh of peace the village of Hermel in the era of Mutassarifiyya.
    The sources didn't provide us with anything about the history of the Mahfouz family in Tripoli and the town of Sheik Muhammad in Akkar, of whom Adel Mahfoud, member in Tripoli's chamber of commerce, was prominent in addition to Ryad Abdullah Mahfouz and Mahmoud Ali Mahfouz.

    As for the Christians of Mahfouz family, Tarrazi says:" Their ancestry is related to the Mahfouz family in Mawsil, of whom is famous the archbishop Gregory Isaac Mahfouz (1800-1855).
    The Mahfouz came from Mosel (in Iraq)to Lebanon and settled in Akura.Then some of their descendants moved towards Ladikiyya, Palestine and the Egyptian country and some Lebanese villages; all of them joined the Maronite sect

    Maalouf narrates that the origin of the family is from Jabla; its ancestor came from it to Dahr Safra in Akkar, then to Bkarkasha in the province of Jibbat Bsharri.
    In Bkarkasha the father of Mahfouz grew up; then, he left it with his son Mahfouz and three brothers and headed for Dayr el-Kamar.One of them stayed in the village of Ghadeer in the region of Kisirwan where his posterity extended towards Sarba and its vicinities and the coast of Beirut.

    As for Mahfouz, he came back to Dahr Safra in Akkar where his descendants stayed; while his father and two brothers settled in Dayr el-Kamar and increased in number.
    At the beginning of the eighteenth century, some of them moved to Delehamiyyah and to a farm near it called Debbiyah, where they were known as the Boustani family(Gardener).
    The most famous of this family's descendants who have" Mahfouz" as their last name are: Habeeb Mahfouz president of the civil service board; the two doctors: Dr. Mufeed Mahfouz and Dr.Gaby Mahfouz and George Rafik Mahfouz; all these are originally from Bkarkasha and came down to Beirut.
    Hanna Hardan separates the Mahfouz's in Marjeyoun from the Maronite Mahfouz.He says that their grandfather Deeb Mahfoud came to Marjeyoun more than 200 years ago.
    He was called "Al-ghareeb"(Stranger) due to his emigration. The members of this family worked in weaving hair when they first came; then they worked in trading. Of their old famous people is silk dealer, Eid Mahfouz.Of their famous members in our period is Dr.Abdel-Maseeh Eid Mahfouz, author of Ashareef al-Radi and his son the playwright and poet ,Isam Mahfouz.

    Many of the Sunnis in Tyre have Mahfouz as their last name. From: Lubnan min Alif Ila ya' (Lebanon from A to Z ) by Elias George Zghaib and Fadi Wadih Abboud

    Authors only mention the places where this family is found. Hirmil,Tripoli,Sheikh Muhammad,Ghazeer,Gheena,Akayba,Fatqa,Ghadeer,Sarba,at Damour's coast in Shouf,Khirbit Qanafar,Jdeidet Marjeyoun ,Shebaa,Kfarmishki,Feedar Jbayl,Tyre, Erdat Zgharta,Blat,Halat Jbeil,Khirbitqanafar,Kfarhi,Kfarmishki,Naqoora and Nahr Ibrahim.
    Information submitted by Adeeb Mahfood, Jamaica

    Pleasant stories about the Marjeyoun and Taymi families.

    A historical social study researching the origins of the families in Marjeyoun and its province, Hasbayya and what follows it from the villages of Orkoob and Lower Wadi Taym; all with the history of immigration in them, their customs, lists of their kinsmen and photos of some of their famous people. .

    Author: Reverend Hanna Hardan Khoury: .

    Page 491
    From Saint's Maroun's program of brotherhood, date 1903, page 346 from the translation of Bishop Boutros Boustani:
    The Bishop translator is from the highbred Boustani family known for noble deeds. It is a large family spread out in different location in Lebanon and other places. Its origin is from Bkarkhasha, which is a province of Jibba (Bsharri). I had known from the history of the mentioned village that in the year 1560 Abou Mahfouz Boustani, the known grandfather of that family, left the village of Bkarkasha with his three brothers and his son Mahfouz to settle in Deir Qamar. Only one brother of Grandfather Mahfouz settled in Ghazeer a part of Kisirwan and his posterity reached Sarba and the coast of Beirut. As for Mahfouz, it was said that he left for Dahr Safra, a province of (Jabal) Al-Alawiyyin due to an enmity resulting from blood; his descendants are still there. They are called the family of Mahfouz.
    As for the Grandfather Mahfouz and his brothers, they settled and proliferated in Deir Qamar. In the beginning of the eighteenth century, some of them moved to Delhmiah farm of Ikleem kharoub; then, they moved to a near farm called Debbiyah. They made it full of life until it became an important village. Afterwards, many of its members dispersed towards different places.

    Mahfouz Branch in Marjeyoun:
    The first ancestor of this branch came to Marjeyoun from about 200 years ago. His name was Deeb and was called stranger due to his emigration. They were the last natives to inhabit in Marjeyoun. They chose in souk "Beit Bakkar" or "7ay al-Islam"(the word 7ay in Arabic means district) as their dwelling. Then, they moved to their current houses in 7ay al-saraya.

    They used to weave hair taking it as a profession, which was widespread in those days. Moreover, they worked in commerce of every kind.

    Page 492:
    Eid was prominent amongst them in his various trading as silk cocoons, leather, hair and so on. He used to facilitate the travel of emigrants to the United States with the sons of Khalil Klailati and their sons. He was well known in the events of 1920 and 1925. He showed heroism in defending Jdeida and he helped the army in withdrawing from the fortress for he shielded the rearguard with a group of his people until the army withdrew and the revolutionist entered Marjeyoun.

    He was famous for his cleverness in hunting and for good shooting. The Shahabi Emirs witnessed that; among them were Najib and Fouad Shihab the two new governors in Jdeida. From the latest glorious deeds of Eid was his building of a cemetery especially for foreigners at his own expense. He finally died in Marjeyoun in the year 1952 at an age of 90.
    Rizk, Najeeb and Haseeb all traveled to Jamaica and worked in commerce. They acquired for themselves a scented name for their credibility and straightness. Their commerce reached its peak and they became wholesale traders and owners of houses and estate. As for Najeeb, he died and his family immigrated to the States. The rest stayed in Jamaica. One of Najeeb's sons was Emile Mahfood who died in 2003 at the age of 79,and had the credit of putting together the family tree information that you find on this site.

    Murad traveled to the United States where he pursued his education until his uncles in Jamaica sent for him to come. He accepted their invitation as he is a respected dealer and has a respected family also. Eid and his two sisters, who are Murad's children, immigrated to the states where they have high positions.

    Boulos (Saleem), the priest traveled to Brazil after continuing his studies in Marjeyoun. He opened a store there and then went to his uncles in Jamaica as their request was. He stayed there 20 years working in business in all its varieties all with honesty and devotion.

    He was ordained in 1940. He served the congregation in Ebel El Saqi, Hasbaya, Kfeir, Rashaya el-Fukhar and other parts of the Parish. He is respected for his piety and devoutness.

    Jad traveled to Jamaica and worked in trading.
    Abed-el Massiah graduated from Marjeyoun Elementary Schools at first and then the late Archbishop Clemons Maalouf sent him to Salehiah College in Jerusalem to persue his education.
    He practiced teaching as his profession at first then studied dentistry by himself. He was a good poet and was always concerned about the projects of the town and worried about the progress of the region in general.
    Ramiz was professional in arts, photography, electricity and mechanics.
    Saleem was a merchant in Jamaica. He owns large stores and different agents and possesses estate and houses.
    Yousef immigrated to Jamaica and came back to his homeland where he works in business and became Mukhtar (Reeve) of Saraya Quarter.
    Wadih was a merchant in Jamaica.
    Michael worked as a dealer in Marjeyoun .
    Raef enrolled in the Lebanese army and proceeded in rank until he reached to be an officer after which he resigned and became a faithful and honest merchant.

    Page 563:
    Of the most honorable and noble Christian families in Hasbayya is the Mahfouz family. Nevertheless, all of them emigrated from the town.
    Famous for the high rank they acquired in Sao Paulo with their labor, perseverance and their care for philanthropic deeds and support for construction projects due to their innate love for good deeds and humanitarian actions are the late Elias Mahfouz, and his two brothers Georges, and Naseeb. They owned textile factories like the famous La por factory, which produces different varieties of cotton and silk. They also had a good name in all the social circles and were characterized with the favorite attributes.

    Page 743:
    The origin of this family goes back to the Jabour family and might go back to Saade in Dhour Shweir. Amongst them was well known the father of Rida Mahfouz who was a respected and notable among his people. His son Ramiz pursued his high school education in the School of Crafts and Art in Sidon.

    Saleem Mahfood....... Wife:Jbara
    Deeb Mahfood..Circa 1804.......Wife:Salima Naifeh
    Mahfood, Najma, Hilwa, Maryam, Watfa
    Mahfood Deeb Mahfood..Circa 1844.......Wife: Myriam Jabbour
    Eid Mahfood.......Wife: Raheeja Naifeh
    Faraj Mahfood.......Wife: Salwa Sobhie
    Rizk Mahfood.......Wife: Asma Zacca
    Najeeb Mahfood.......Wife: Almaasa Hourani
    Haseeb Mahfood.......Wife: Adora Bardowell
    Katrina Mahfood.......Husband: Faraj Shadeed
    Tufaha Mahfood.......Husband: Abdo Mobaid
    Habah Mahfood.......Husband: Nimer Sawaya
    Fahda Mahfood.......Husband: Najeeb Zayne / Skaf
    **Wajeeha Mahfood.......Husband: Najeeb Zayne / Skaf

    **(After Fahda died Najeeb Zayne married her sister Wajeeha)