Beirut... The Glimpse of an Idea

This book is published in commemoration of the great Lebanese writers of the renaissance (al-nahda) and in recognition of their literary works. We would like through this publication, to shed some light on the role played by Dar Sader, in the spread of knowledge and culture, and the promotion of literature and science, 150 years after its founding.

Our book commemorating Dar Sader's 150th anniversary

The idea that lit the spirit of the founder Ibrahim Sader, launched the long journey in the fields of culture and publishing. The cornerstone of this great cultural edifice was laid when concept became reality. Ibrahim Sader was one of the few serious pioneers with the courage and responsibility needed to enter the domain of printing and publishing in those difficult times.

Ibrahim Sader, the founder

This book is a tribute, in recognition and gratitude to the departed souls of the founders: Ibrahim Sader, Salim Sader his son, and Antoun Sader his grandson (our father).


The sole motivation for this work and perseverance was his love for the profession. Furthermore he considered the book profession to be a mission whose twin companion was trust. This was the concept that Ibrahim Sader instilled in his children, who in turn began building the premises and acquiring the necessary equipment to meet the challenge of a rather narrow local market and an unstable regional market in the midst of a world full of hardships, engulfed by modern technology, and pushed by continuous development and wondrous innovations.

With open arms, the children of Ibrahim Sader embraced the mission bestowed upon them. Inspired by their work, in turn they entrusted it to their children. Thus, throughout the past fifteen decades, Dar Sader was in constant renewal in the world of printing, publishing and distribution, never failing to adapt to modern technology or to invest in human and material resources, thus providing excellence and continuity.

The custodians accomplished all this so as to strengthen their role as publishers while preserving the diversity and above all the quality of their productions.

Publishing the cultural and literary heritage of resident or expatriate Lebanese and Arab authors, who are held in high esteem, increased the demand for our publications throughout the Arab world. Moreover, readers were attracted at book fairs with new editions, looks and topics.

Dar Sader has been characterized throughout by a good reputation, being the first ethical requirement necessary for success in all areas of life, and especially in business. Moral yield was always our primary objective, while material gains were a means of subsistence and continuity.

Yes, we would like that this book tells the story of perseverance, resilience, development and growth. It is the story of four generations of the Sader family, their incessant work, their commitment to heritage enriched by the accumulated achievements of a century and a half of service to cultural life, and their determination to confront the challenges however great.

This book is a tribute, in recognition and gratitude to the departed souls of the founders: Ibrahim Sader, Salim Sader his son, and Antoun Sader his grandson (our father).

The public and private aspects are accounted for by friends and much-appreciated prominent writers in the world of literature, who participated in the development of its rich content, nevertheless, covering the cultural characteristics of different stages in the history of Dar Sader and its contributions to the Arab literary renaissance along the one hundred and fifty year path. The book therefore embraces the professional history of the Sader family, and includes an overview of the cultural life in Lebanon and the Arab world during the past era.

We, as family and publishing house, offer our most sincere thanks to all the great writers for their articles and precious studies that have given great value to and enriched our tribute. We also wish to commemorate, in this special edition, the loved ones who have left this world, and to sow the seeds of this mission’s memory in the future generations.

Honestly, we were not aware of the hardships encountered by our founding fathers until we took over this inheritance. With the technological advancements available to us today, we cannot but appreciate and regard with utmost respect the difficulties encountered by those who came before us—these difficulties being different in shape but similar in content from what we see today. Those of us working in this field continue to row against the current of their destiny in this modern age, in an ongoing effort to break free from the constraints.

Finally, it remains for us to acknowledge and thank all our partners, writers and readers for their deeds. Their trust and love are our greatest asset. They inspired our predecessors, and will continue to inspire our successors to strengthen their will and determination to progress.

We would like, on this precious occasion, to reiterate the principles that were bequeathed by our ancestors: seriousness in life, commitment at work and continuing progress in modernization, as well as work ethics, honesty, integrity and openness to others. We hope to continue the course, seeking the protection of God to strengthen our steps, and to stay faithful to the values we pursue and the memories of the men who handed us the torch, entrusting us to maintain the brightness and radiance of its flame before handing it to future generations.

Once again, we thank all those who have contributed to the development of this book, including Hala Bizri, Layla Makarem, Magda Nammour, Georges Abi Saleh, Ghazi Ghorayeb, Chawki Hamadeh, Abboudi Bou Jawdeh, Michel Khalil Geha, Ibrahim Chabbouh, Youssef Assaf, Père Antoine Daou, Hussein Majed, Steven Jensen and Issam T. Masri, and all those who have supported us in this work.

Salim, Ibrahim and Nabil Sader

Dar Sader