Pronunciation: (sēr'ē-u), [key]
1. Official name, Syr'ian Ar'ab Repub'lic. a republic in SW Asia at the E end of the Mediterranean. 7,200,000; 71,227 sq. mi. (184,478 sq. km). Cap.: Damascus.
2. a territory mandated to France in 1922, including the present republics of Syria and Lebanon (Latakia and Jebel ed Druz were incorporated into Syria 1942): the French mandatory powers were nominally terminated as of January 1, 1944.
3. an ancient country in W Asia, including the present Syria, Lebanon, Israel, and adjacent areas: a part of the Roman Empire 64b.c.–a.d.636.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.