Benghazi /bɛnˈɡɑːzi/ is the second most populous city in Libya and the largest in Cyrenaica. The city was also provisional capital of the National Transitional Council and this creates a constant atmosphere of rivalry and sensitivities between Benghazi and Tripoli, and between Cyrenaica and Tripolitania. The population was 670,797 at the 2006 census, on 15 February 2011, an uprising against the government of Muammar Gaddafi occurred in the city. The revolts spread by 17 February to Bayda, Tobruk, Ajdabya, Al Marj in the East and Zintan, Zawiya in the West, Benghazi was taken by Gaddafi opponents on 21 February, who founded the National Transitional Council. The ancient Greek city that existed within the modern day boundaries of Benghazi was founded around 525 BC, at the time, Euesperides was most likely founded by people from Cyrene or Barce, which was located on the edge of a lagoon which opened from the sea. At the time, this area may have been enough to receive small sailing vessels. The oldest coins minted in the city back to 480 BC. One side of coins has an engraving of Delphi. The other side is an engraving of a plant, once the symbol of trade from Cyrenaica because of its use as a rich seasoning. The city was in territory and was surrounded by inhospitable tribes. One of the Cyrenean kings whose fate is connected with the city is Arcesilaus IV and this proved ineffective, since when the king fled to Euesperides during the anticipated revolution, he was assassinated, thus terminating the almost 200-year rule of the Battiad dynasty. After the marriage around the middle of the 3rd century BC of Ptolemy III to Berenice, daughter of the Cyrenean Governor Magas, Euesperides became Berenice and the change of name also involved a relocation. Its desertion was probably due to the silting up of the lagoons, Berenice, the Greek colony had lasted from the 6th to the mid-3rd centuries BC. Modern Benghazi, on the Gulf of Sidra, lies a little southwest of the site of the ancient Greek city of Berenice or Berenicis or Bernici, the new city was later given the name Hesperides, in reference to the Hesperides, the guardians of the mythic western paradise. The name may have referred to green oases in low-lying areas in the nearby coastal plain. Benghazi later became a Roman city and prospered for 600 years, in its more prosperous period, Berenice became a Christian bishopric. The first of its bishops whose name is recorded in extant documents is Ammon, dathes was at the First Council of Nicaea in 325, and Probatius at a synod held in Constantinople in 394. No longer a residential bishopric, Berenice is today listed by the Catholic Church as a titular see, in the 13th century, the small settlement became an important player in the trade growing up between Genoese merchants and the tribes of the hinterland
Image: Bengasi visto dall'Hotel Tibesti panoramio
A panathenaic amphora found in Benghazi from the times of Euesperides, the ancient Greek city that is now Benghazi.
The Ottoman flag is raised during Mawlid celebrations in Benghazi in 1896.
The colonial Italians created the "Lungomare" (sea-walk) of Benghazi and constructed many other buildings