The Siege of Shkodra : Albania's Courageous Stand Against Ottoman Conquest, 1478

The Siege of Shkodra : Albania's Courageous Stand Against Ottoman Conquest, 1478


The first English translation of an eyewitness account of the Ottoman sieges of Shkodra (Albania) in 1474 and 1478-79, written by a besieged Shkodran citizen who fought in the battles and would later become a priest in Italy

The book is considered both history and literature, written in classical Latin in 1504 for a Western audience concerned about the advance of the Ottomans into the heart of Europe. It is considered by scholars to be a seminal source of history providing significant details about the Balkans, the Ottoman Empire, the Republic of Venice, the Albanians, Sultan Mehmed II "The Conqueror," religious conflict, late-medieval siege tactics, and the development of weaponry. Though the account is history, it unfolds as a gripping story with all the human drama and pathos that accompanies warfare. Inside are rousing speeches, intense battle scenes, passionate prayers, and counsel for future generations.

Barleti and his contemporaries considered Shkodra to be the shield of Europe (indeed this was the final great battle before the Ottomans attacked Otronto in 1480).

Barleti's work comprises only 50% of the work, as this edition includes supplemental material such a brief foreword by Ismail Kadare, a historical preface by Prof. David Abulafia, the original introduction by Prof. Aleks Buda, "The War of Shkodra" ("Bellum Scodrense") by George Merula, a panegyric to the Venetian Senate by Marin Be├žikemi, passages from Ottoman chroniclers about the siege (A. Pashazade, Tursun, Kivami, Idris-i Bidlisi, K. Pashazade), and new maps and historical commentary by translator-editor David Hosaflook.MINI-REVIEWS
"If one were to search for a literary creation wholly worthy of the expression 'monumental work, ' it would be hard to find a better example than 'The Siege of Shkodra' by Marin Barleti ... It earned monumentality throughout the centuries ... This is what happens with the great books, the ones that enter the world as grand testimonies. The siege of Shkodra is the final act of a tragedy that would not only alter the face of Albania, but also of all the Balkans and a portion of the continent for nearly six hundred years.
-ISMAIL KADARE, renown and revered Albanian author

"David Hosaflook has brought vividly back to life an extraordinary chapter from the history of the fifteenth century--a gripping eyewitness account of the Albanian resistance to the advance of the Ottomans into the heart of Europe. Their defense of Shkodra was as heroic and thrilling as the better-known siege of Malta. Barleti's narrative does it full justice, and Hosaflook's translation is both scholarly and highly readable."
-ROGER CROWLEY, best-selling author of Mediterranean narrative history such as Empires of the Sea and City of Fortune"

"I felt like Howard Carter peering into the tomb of King Tut for the first time when I started reading Hosaflook's masterful new translation of the epic story recounted by Barleti. Beautifully crafted and painstakingly researched, the work fills an important gap and provides unique and compelling new scholarship in the field of Renaissance history."
-KIRSTIN DOWNEY, former Washington Post reporter, historical biographer, and author of books such as "The Woman Behind the New Deal: The Life and Legacy of Frances Perkins" and "Isabella: The Warrior Queen."

"The Ottoman Empire spread into southeastern Europe, with the banners of Islam looming on the horizon. One of the key moments of this expansion, and a turning point in Albanian history, was the siege of Shkodra in the late fifteenth century. We would know little of the dramatic events were it not for historian Marin Barleti. His account (1504) is a seminal source of Balkan history. The English-speaking reader can now finally savour this gripping tale, in the flowing rendition of David Hosaflook."
-ROBERT ELSIE, author and specialist in Albanian studies

Similar Books

ISBN 10: 1592110002
ISBN 13: 9781592110001

23 Nov 2017
A.K. Brackob

ISBN 10: 1507631308
ISBN 13: 9781507631300

20 Jan 2015
Professor Robert Elsie

ISBN 10: 1709429682
ISBN 13: 9781709429682

18 Nov 2019
Charles River Editors

ISBN 10: 1095529943
ISBN 13: 9781095529942

22 Apr 2019
Elena Kocaqi

ISBN 10: 1788315146
ISBN 13: 9781788315142

07 Feb 2019
Robert Elsie

ISBN 10: 1507595670
ISBN 13: 9781507595671

19 Jan 2015
Tajar Zavalani

ISBN 10: 1473877202
ISBN 13: 9781473877207

25 Jun 2018
Eugenia Russell

ISBN 10: 0198857292
ISBN 13: 9780198857297

08 Sep 2020
Noel Malcolm

ISBN 10: 0521595010
ISBN 13: 9780521595018

01 Jul 1999
Peter Neville

ISBN 10: 1474614817
ISBN 13: 9781474614818

22 Nov 2021
Simon Sebag Montefiore

ISBN 10: 0241560497
ISBN 13: 9780241560495

21 Jun 2022
Chris Patten

ISBN 10: 1611490928
ISBN 13: 9781611490923

01 Dec 2008
Charles Ivar McGrath