Aleppo is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world; it has been inhabited since perhaps as early as the 6th millennium BC.Excavations at Tell Qaramel (25 km north of Aleppo) show the area to have been inhabited since the 11th millennium BC, which makes it the oldest known human settlement in the world.Aleppo appears in historical records as an important city much earlier than Damascus. The first record of Aleppo comes from the third millenium BC, when Aleppo was the capital of an independent kingdom closely related to Ebla, known as Armi to Ebla and Arman to the Akkadians. Giovanni Pettinato describes Armi as Ebla's alter ego. Naram-Sin of Akkad (or his grandfather Sargon) destroyed both Ebla and Arman in the 23rd century BC.
Aleppo was known to antiquity as Khalpe, Khalibon, and to the Greeks as Beroea (Βέροια). During the Crusades, and again during the French occupation for Syria and the Lebanon, the name Alep was used: "Aleppo" is an Italianised version of this. However, the ancient name of the city, Halab, is of obscure origin.
Aleppo became part of the Ottoman Empire in 1516, when the city had around 50,000 inhabitants. It was the center of the Vilayet of Aleppo and the capital of Syria
Aleppo is a city of several and mixed architectural styles. Numerous invaders, from Byzantines and Seljuks to Mamluks and Ottomans have left their architectural marks on the city, whose origins can be traced back more than 2000 years.