Names and etymology
The name of Damascus first appeared in the geographical list of Thutmose III as 𓍘𓄟𓊃𓈎𓅱/𓍘𓄟𓈎𓅱𓈉 T-m-ś-q in the 15th century BC.
The etymology of the ancient name "T-m-ś-q" is uncertain. It is attested as 𒀲𒋙 Imerišú in Akkadian, 𓍘𓄠𓈎𓅱 T-m-ś-q in Egyptian, Dammaśq (דמשק) in Old Aramaic and Dammeśeq (דמשק) in Biblical Hebrew. A number of Akkadian spellings are found in the Amarna letters, from the 14th century BC: 𒁲𒈦𒋡 Dimasqa, 𒁲𒈦𒀸𒄀 Dimàsqì, and 𒁲𒈦𒀸𒋡 Dimàsqa. Later Aramaic spellings of the name often include an intrusive resh (letter r), perhaps influenced by the root dr, meaning "dwelling". Thus, the English and Latin name of the city is "Damascus" which was imported from (Greek: Δαμασκός) originated from "the Qumranic Darmeśeq (דרמשק), and Darmsûq (ܕܪܡܣܘܩ) in Syriac", meaning "a well-watered land". In Arabic, the city is called Dimašqu š-Šāmi (دمشق الشام), although this is often shortened to either Dimašq or aš-Šām by the citizens of Damascus, of Syria and other Arab neighbors and Turkey (as Şam). Aš-Šām is an Arabic term for "Levant" and for "Syria"; the latter, and particularly the historical region of Syria, is called Bilādu š-Šāmi (بلاد الشام / "land of the Levant"). Historically, Baalshamin or Ba'al Šamem (Aramaic: ܒܥܠ ܫܡܝܢ, romanized: Lord of Heaven(s)), was a Semitic sky-god in Canaan/Phoenicia and ancient Palmyra. Hence, Sham refers to (heaven or sky).