Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Berat Castle

Well, this is new (for me): a blog post on a castle in Albania. See, I was yet again consulting, my, semi, Ever Faithful List of Castles. I thought I would just start at the top: Albania. The castles were in order by county. First county: Berat. The castle didn't look to impressive, but I thought I would give it a try.

(Click on the picture for a larger image, it really is quite cool on a closer look.)

Berat Castle (Albanian: Kalaja e Beratit),in Berat, Albania, is built on a rocky hill on the left bank of the river Osum and is accessible only from the south. After being burned down by the Romans in 200 B.C. the walls were strengthened in the fifth century under Byzantine Emperor Theodosius II, and were rebuilt during the 6th century under the Emperor Justinian I and again in the 13th century under the Despot of Epirus, Michael Angelus Comnenus, cousin of the Byzantine Emperor. The main entrance, on the north side, is defended by a fortified courtyard and there are three smaller entrances. The fortress of Berat in its present state, even though considerably damaged, remains a magnificent sight. The surface that it encompasses made it possible to house a considerable portion of the cities inhabitants. The buildings inside the fortress were built during the 13th century and because of their characteristic architecture are preserved as cultural monuments. The population of the fortress was Christian, and it had about 20 churches (most built during the 13th century) and only one mosque, for the use of the Turkish garrison, (of which there survives only a few ruins and the base of the minaret). The churches of the fortress were damaged through years and only some have remained.

Berat Castle is depicted on the reverse of the Albanian 10 lekë coin, issued in 1996 and 2000.

You can read more about the castle and the city around it here:

So, as I very often do after doing a blog post, I have another place that I want to go visit.

Ditën e mirë!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Impressive! :) I love the picture.

~ A.K. ~