Cool topic. The Albanians and Albania as artistic motives were quite popular. Grande folk costumes and a stoic appearance was what attracted painters I suspect. I'll post some of my favorites later on.
Post by ILIRI I MADH on Nov 3, 2007 0:18:19 GMT -5
The Arnaut is not only brave, but foolhardy and muthig to largest audacity. Ein Menschenleben gilt ihm keinen Pfifferling; er wagt auch das seinige, ohne nur mit der Wimper zu zucken. A human life does not give any chanterelle; He dares the seinige not only with the unblinking eye. Dabei ist er treulos, hinterlistig und von einer Rohheit, die gradezu ihres Gleichen sucht. They are faithful, and from an insidious truculency, gradezu evening. Messer und Pistole sitzen bei ihm locker. Knives and pistols sit with him loose. Er sticht und schießt bei der geringsten Veranlassung, und er weiß, daß er das mit ziemlicher Sicherheit thun kann, da selbst der Richter ihn nicht gern verurtheilt, weil er befürchten muß, wenn nicht noch während der Gerichtssitzung so doch später niedergestochen zu werden. He stabs and shoots at the slightest reason, and he knows that he is almost certainly thun, because even the judges did not like verurtheilt because he feared, if not during the court session but then later niedergestochen too. Darum ist der Arnaute gefürchtet und gemieden. That is the Arnaute feared and shunned. Er darf ungestraft thun, was hundert Andere nicht wagen würden . (42) Diese Leute belästigen die Beduinin Hiluja, die durch das mutige Eingreifen Hilals, der sie – in self-fulfilling prophecy – als seine Braut ausgibt, gerettet wird. Thun, he may with impunity, which is one hundred Others would not dare
Very interesting. The Albanians did indeed venture on adventures far away from Albania. They were a key group in the development in Egypt during those days. Gerôme's painting are almost like actual photos of those Albanian warriors; he captures their stoic personalities as described above in the quote provided by Ilir.
Love this picture, Albanians playing a game of chess. They seem so playful (in a serious way) and seemingly indifferent to the hardships of war they undobutly suffered.
Post by meltdown711 on Nov 3, 2007 12:12:30 GMT -5
The Albanians in Mehmet Ali's army were amongst the most troublesome of troops. The second they helped secure his position, he became intent on wiping them out because of just how restless they were. This was partly the reason for why he continuously sent them to various campaigns -- to lower their numbers. Albanians there were liable to riots and revolts and he feared that ultimately they would try and overthrow him(I guess as he identified more and more with Egypt and became less enthusiastic about sucking up to them)
1830: Albanian palikars in pursuit of an enemy wear long-haired sheepskin jackets and carry long barelled rifles as they climb through mountainous country.
That's one of my favorite paintings Viktror. Thanks for posting it. Their hairstyle is quite intriguing and reflective of just how long we've been in the Balkans. The shaving of the sides and leaving a plait behind was an ancient custom. The soldiers of Alexander the Great, the Spartans and many other ancient peoples of the Balkan peninsula also had this hairstyle. The Albanians were the only ones to have such hairstyles well into 'modern history', such as the begining of 20th century. When Ali pasha tried to ban them, he nearly faced a rebellion.
Also, one of the Muzaka princes was nicknamed 'Kishetishi' (Gërsheta), meaning 'the plait'. Perhaps he had a similiar hairstyle. It was also to be found among Arvanites, which isn't surprising.