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Pashko Vasa O moj Shqypni e mjera Shqypni!

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Uploaded on Jan 21, 2009

From 1842 to 1847 he worked as a secretary for the British consulate in that northern Albanian city where he had an opportunity to perfect his knowledge of a number of foreign languages: Italian, French, Turkish and Greek. He also knew some English and Serbo-Croatian, and in later years learned Arabic.

In 1847, full of ideals and courage, he set off for Italy on the eve of the turbulent events that were to take place there and elsewhere in Europe in 1848. There are two letters written in Bologna in the summer of that revolutionary year in which he expresses openly republican and anti-clerical views. We later find him in Venice where he took part in fighting in Marghera on 4 May 1849, part of a Venetian uprising against the Austrians. After the arrival of Austrian troops on August 28 of that year, Pashko Vasa was obliged to flee to Ancona where, as an Ottoman citizen, he was expelled to Constantinople.


Though most of Pashko Vasa's publications were in French and Italian, there is one poem, the most influential and perhaps the most popular ever written in Albanian, which has ensured him his deserved place in Albanian literary history, the famous O moj Shqypni e mjera Shqypni (Oh Albania, Poor Albania). This stirring appeal for a national awakening is thought to have been written in the period between 1878, the dramatic year of the League of Prizren, and 1880.

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