Sanjak of Albania

Sanjak of Albania
Sanjak of Albania
sanjak of the Ottoman Empire

Life span?
Capital Gjirokastër from 1419
 - Battle of Savra 1385
 - Disestablished Enter end date
Today part of Albania, Greece Montenegro

The Sanjak of Albania[1] (Turkish: sancak-i Arvanid), or the Sanjak of Arvanid[2] was one of the sanjaks of the Ottoman Empire. Its territory stretched between Mat River on the north and Çameria to the south.[3]



During the 14. century Ottoman rule began to extend over the Eastern Mediterranean and the Balkans. The division of the Albania into small, quarreling fiefdoms ruled by independent feudal lords and tribal chiefs made them easy prey for the Ottoman armies. In 1385, the ruler of Durrës, Karl Thopia, appealed to the sultan for support against his rivals, the Balsha family. An Ottoman force quickly marched into Albania along the Via Egnatia and routed Balša II in the Battle of Savra. The principal Albanian clans soon swore fealty to the Ottoman Empire. The Ottomans allowed conquered Albanian clan chiefs to maintain their positions and property, but they had to pay tribute, send their sons to the Ottoman court as hostages, and provide the Ottoman army with auxiliary troops.[4]


The Sanjak of Albania was one of the first Ottoman Administrative units in the Balkans which territory was compromised of most of the territory of southern and central Albania.[5] Its territory also included Krujë and its surrounding (together with the territory which today belongs to Tirana) which formed separate administrative unit within the Sanjak of Albania. Its name was Krujë Subaşilik because it was governed by subaşi.[6]

The Sanjak of Albania was part of Elayet Rumelia which was consisted of all sanjaks on the Balkans.[7] Shijak became part of Sanjak of Albania after year 1400, when it belonged to the timar Skurrje.[8] Gjirokastra became the county town of the Sanjak of Albania in 1419.[9]

When Mehmed I was sultan of the Ottoman Empire (from 1413 to 1421), he appointed Hadân Suleiman Pasha, who was sanjakbey of Semendre, as sanjakbey of the Sanjak of Albania.[10] In 1441 sanjakbey was Jakub Bey, son of Teodor Muzaka.[11] In 1441 territory of Përmet was added to this sanjak.

Piri Re'is claim in his work 'Bahriye', a Sailor's Handbook written in 1521 that Herceg Novi belonged to the Sanjak of Albania.[12]

Arvanid register

In period 1431—1432 all rural and urban households and their property were registered in all ten districts of the sancak of Arvanid.[13] The 1432 register shows that districts in the Sanjak of Albania were further divided on 335 timars, each composed by two or three villages.[7] The Arvanid register is one of the earliest available land registers in Ottoman Empire's archives.[14][15] It was published in the first book written by Turkish historian Halil İnalcık, which he considers his most important work.[16]

Albanian revolt of 1435—1436

During the Ottoman campaigns of 1435 and 1436 Ali Beg (sanjakbey of the Sanjak of Albania)[17] , together with another Ottoman general Turakhan Beg, suppressed the revolt in Albania[18] led by Gjergj Arianiti and Andrew Thopia.[19]


History of Albania
Gjergj Kastrioti.jpg
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  1. ^ The Papacy and the Levant, 1204-1571, four volumes, American Philosophical Society, 1976—1984, ISBN 978-0-87169-114-9,, "Halil İnalcik: Hicrî 835 tarihli Sûret-i defter-i sancak-i Arvanid. (Copy of the register for A.H. 835 for the Sanjak of Albania)" 
  2. ^ Zhelyazkova, Antonina (2000) "Albanian Identities" Sofia: International Centre for Minority Studies and Intercultural Relations (IMIR) Retrieved March 18, 2011 "in all ten districts of the sancak of Arvanid" 
  3. ^ Zhelyazkova, Antonina (2000) "Albanian Identities" Sofia: International Centre for Minority Studies and Intercultural Relations (IMIR) Retrieved March 18, 2011 "The territories of Central and Southern Albania, stretching between the Mat River to the north and Çameria [modern Tsameria, Greece] to the south, were included in a single sancak known from the records and historical works as Arvanid" 
  4. ^ Raymond Zickel and Walter R. Iwaskiw (1994). "Albania: A Country Study ("The Ottoman Conquest of Albania")". Retrieved 9 April 2008. 
  5. ^ Duka, Ferit. "Kruja dhe Skënderbeu" (in Albanian). Retrieved 28 July 2011. "Kryeqendra e re e Kastriotëve, bashkë me rrethin e saj, ishte bërë kohë më parë pjesë e Sanxhakut Shqiptar, një nga të parat njësi administrative të krijuara në Gadishullin Ballkanik nga shteti osman.Sanxhaku i lartpërmendur përfshinte pjesën më të madhe të tokave të Shqipërisë së Jugut dhe të Mesme të pushtuara nga osmanët.... (Kastriotis new capital, along with its surrounding, was made ​​long ago the part of the Sanjak of Albania, one of the first administrative units created in the Balkan Peninsula by the Ottoman state. The above mentioned sanjak included most of the territory of Albania which was captured by Ottoman Empirre which was southern and central Albania )" 
  6. ^ Duka, Ferit. "Kruja dhe Skënderbeu" (in Albanian). Retrieved 28 July 2011. "Kruja me rrethin (këtu përfshihej edhe territori i sotëm i rrethit të Tiranës, përjashto krahinën e Kërrabës, e cila bënte pjesë në vilajetin e Pavllo Kurtiqit-FD) formonte një vilajet më vete në kuadrin e Sanxhakut Shqiptar...Kreu i vilajetit në këtë etapë fillestare të sundimit osman quhej subash, ndaj dhe vilajeti quhej ndryshe edhe subashllëk. )" 
  7. ^ a b Vickers, Miranda (1999). The Albanians: a modern history. I.B.Tauris. p. 7. ISBN 978-1860645419. 
  8. ^ "Community development plan 2008 - 2015 Mnicipality of Shijak". 2008. p. 7. Retrieved March 18, 2011. "After year 1400, Shijak and its surrounding villages were registered as part of the Sanjak of Albania under the timar of Skurrje" 
  9. ^ Riza, Emin (1992). "Ethnographic and open-air museums". UNESCO, Paris. Retrieved March 18, 2011. 
  10. ^ Archivum ottomanicum, Volumes 1-3. Mouton. 1969. p. 200. Retrieved March 19, 2011. 
  11. ^ Balkanološki institut (Naučno društvo NR Bosne i Hercegovine) (1956) (in Serbo-Croatian). Godisnjak, Volumes 1-2. Balkanološki institut (Naučno društvo NR Bosne i Hercegovine). p. 354. Retrieved 12 September 2011. "1441 g. vidimo da je Permeti dat sandzak begu Arvanida (Arnavuda) Jakub begu, sinu Princa Teodora Muzake" 
  12. ^ Re'is, Piri "'Bahriye', a Sailor's Handbook" First published in R. Elsie: Early Albania, a Reader of Historical Texts, 11th - 17th Centuries, Wiesbaden 2003, p. 56-58. archived from the original on March 19, 2011 Retrieved March 19, 2011 "there is a castle called Castelnuovo, i.e. Newcastle (Hercegnovi). It belongs to the Sanjak of Albania." 
  13. ^ Zhelyazkova, Antonina (2000) "Albanian Identities" Sofia: International Centre for Minority Studies and Intercultural Relations (IMIR) Retrieved March 18, 2011 "sancak of Arvanid" 
  14. ^ .Nejdet Gök (2001). "Introduction of the Berat in Ottoman Diplomatics,". Bulgarian Historical Review (3-4): 141–150. 
  15. ^ Faroqhi, Suraiya The Ottomans and the Balkans: a discussion of historiography Netherlands: Koninlijke Brill NV ISBN 90-04-11902-7 Retrieved March 20, 2011 "An Ottoman tax register from the year 1432, one of the oldest of its kind to survive, ... in the newly conquered province of Arranid" 
  16. ^ Mert, H (August 2010) "Living History Halil İnanvcik" Turkish Airlines web site archived from the original on March 20, 2011 Retrieved March 20, 2011 "It is my most important work: Sûreti Defter-i Sancak-i Arvanid, Timar Kayıtları (The Fief Records of the Register for Arvanid Province)." 
  17. ^ Pollo, Stefanaq; Arben Puto, Kristo Frashëri, Skënder Anamali (1974) (in French). Histoire de l'Albanie, des origines à nos jours. Horvath. p. 78. ISBN 9782717100259. Retrieved 23 June 2011. "Le sandjakbey d'Albanie, Ali bey Evrenos, partant de Gjirokastra, se porta aussitôt contre Arianite, mais les Turcs, selon le chroniqueur Oruc, furent battus à Buzurshek, dans la vallée du Shkumbin." 
  18. ^ Houtsma, Martijn Theodoor (1993) First encyclopaedia of Islam: 1913-1936 VIII Netherlands: E.J. Brill and Luzac and Co. p. 466'All+and+Turakhan+effected+a+partial+submission+of+the+Albanians&source=bl&ots=Oo4NCf3qaO&sig=Zry9bUzPRrbEv879d0N-cjT-z80&hl=en&ei=vvDrTc3qF43ZsgbUscnnCg&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CBcQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=Ottoman%20generals%20'All%20and%20Turakhan%20effected%20a%20partial%20submission%20of%20the%20Albanians&f=false "...Ottoman campaigns of 1435 and 1436 when the Ottoman generals Ali and Turakhan effected a partially submission of Albanians" 
  19. ^ Fine, John Van Antwerp (1994), The Late Medieval Balkans: A Critical Survey from the Late Twelfth Century to the Ottoman Conquest, University of Michigan Press, p. 535, ISBN 978-0472082605,, "In 1432 Andrew Thopia revolted against his Ottoman overlords ... inspired other Albanian chiefs, in particular George Arianite (Araniti) ... The revolt spread ... from region of Valona up to Skadar..." 

Further reading

  • Halil İnalcik: Hicrî 835 tarihli Sûret-i defter-i sancak-i Arvanid. (Copy of the register for A.H. 835 for the Sanjak of Albania)

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