The homeland for Phoenicia was tiny, only 160 miles long and 20 miles wide, in the region now comprising Lebanon, and parts of Syria and Israel. Little to support the population could be done on that small parcel of land, so they took to the sea. They became the most skillful shipbuilders and navigators of their time, sailing to Spain, the Strait of Gibralter, the British Isles, and Southern Africa.
Along the way they founded colonies, the greatest being Carthage. During their travels the Phoenicians learned the skills of the lands through which they traveled. They became skilled silver miners, tinsmiths, dye makers, carpenters, brickmasons, and merchants as related to them all.
Perhaps the most significant contribution made by the Phoenicians was a syllabic writing which they developed in 1000 BC. Much of it became the basis for the Greek and English written word. The chief divinities of the Phoenician religion were the god Baal, the goddess Astarte, and the god Moloch to whom human sacrifice was made in times of distress. It is possible that this tiny artifact represents one of those deities.