Who are the real owners of Fustanella? - Albanian History & Culture

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Who are the real owners of Fustanella?

Who are the real owners of Fustanella?

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ne: 17-01-2010, 16:32:42
Who are the real owners of Foustanella?

The dress of Balkan peoples is always rich with a lot of forms. Especially, the traditional dress of ancient peoples of Balkan are more interesting than others traditional dresses. By the way, which people should be regard asthe oldest in Balkan? In Balkan Peninsula live a lot of peoples such as Albanians, Greeks, Walachs, Romanians, Serbs, Bulgars, Montenegros, Croatians, SlavoMacedonians, Turks, Jews etc. But which of above people have right to claim itself as direct descendants of ancient peoples of Balkan? Usually our minds are tended to considering two peoples as more ancient than rest of others: Albanians and Greeks. And what’s about the rest of people? As historical science has proven, all of these peoples like: Slavs and Turks are settlers in Balkan after VII century A.D (Slavs) and XIV (Turks).

    The main question now is; who are more ancient: Albanians or Greeks?

The historical evidences shown clear that modern Greeks are not at all descendants by the ancient ones. Greece was a turbulence place of intermingling of many races such as Slavs, Bulgars, Vlachs, etc. All we know how despaired were European philhellenes  about peoples of lands (which philhellenes called as Greece) who didn’t resemble with ancient Greeks.

    “The philhellenes of America, Britain and Western Europe had called for a free Greek state in a romantic passionate  attempt to bring to life the Hellenic culture of the past. Little did any of them know of what extreme changes had taken place in the region of what was once the Greek City States. ‘Naturally, many travelers and philhellenes were shocked at the Greeks’ lack of sophistication, and the ABSENCE OF A PHYSICAL RESEMBLANCE TO THE HELLENES of their classical imagination”.

    ~”The Balkans, Nationalism, War and the Great Powers” by Misha Glenny, page 33

I guess that is no need to goes further with these precisely explains of Misha’s. The Great Power’s at this time were interested to estabilish a new state in territories of ancient Greece, for their own goals.
The primary errors of them was of their childish misbelief to confuse the actual inhabitants of  ‘Greece’ with ancient ones.

I guess that is nessesary to take a place a question like that: to which people belonged these Greeks? Well…it is not easy to give a quick answer because there is an embarrasment issue of forefathers of today’s Greeks. In one hand, these Greeks are descendants of Slavs, Vlachs, Turks (settlers) and in other hand of Orthodox Albanians (natives).

    “The greeks – Thoug the Greeks are descended in part from the people who inhabited their country in ancient times, and thoug they speak a modern form of the old Greek language, it is certain that the present inhabitants are a much mixed race. They are largely Slav, but hold a strong feeling for the great past of their country. This gives them an unusally strong national rallying point”.

    “Throughout Rumelia, the Peloponnese and the islands, there were large Albanian communities –most of them Orthodox Christians althoug Muslim Albanians predominated in the Epirot centre of the rebel pasha, Ali Pasha”
    (’The Balkans, Nationalism, War and the great Powers’, page 25)

    “ It’s the fault of a German,” Mr. Dimou said about Greek pride in this cause. He was referring to Johann Winckelmann, the 18th-century German art historian whose vision of an ancient Greece “populated by beautiful, tall, blond, wise people, representing perfection,” as Mr. Dimou put it, was in a sense imposed on the country to shape modern Greek identity.

    “We used to speak Albanian and call ourselves Romans, but then Winckelmann, Goethe, Victor Hugo, Delacroix, they all told us, ‘No, you are Hellenes, direct descendants of Plato and Socrates,’ and that did it. If a small, poor nation has such a burden put on its shoulders, it will never recover.”

    This myth required excavators on the Acropolis during the 19th century to erase Ottoman traces and purify the site as the crucible of classicism. The Erechtheion had been a harem, the Parthenon a mosque. “But Greek archaeology has always been a kind of fantasy,” Antonis Liakos, a leading Greek historian, noted the other day. The repatriation argument, relying on claims of historical integrity, itself distorts history.

    For their part, the British also point out that the marbles’ presence in London across two centuries now has its own perch on history, having influenced neo-Classicism and Philhellenism around the globe. That’s true, and it’s not incidental that the best editions of ancient Greek texts are published by British, French, Americans and Germans, not Greeks. But imperialism isn’t an endearing argument.’’
    (take by:http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/24/arts/design/24abroad.html?_r=2&pagewanted=2&emc=eta1)

The Modern Greek Nation is general totality of assimilating of ethnic orthodox Albanians, Slavs, Vlachs, Turks, Jews, etc. Considering these incontestable proofs, the national dress of “Greek Nation” is entirely Albanian, because Albanians made up the majority of today’s what is
Greece or as Turks called as ‘Yunnanistan’.

The Greek propaganda has begin to accusing Albanians of ’stolen Greek culture and dresses’! Such non-senses are repeat till nowadays. By the way, Albanians are convicted because ‘they borrowed Fustanella from Greeks’. But, how true is this?

    “The Albanians are the descedants of one of the oldest of the Balkan races...”
    ~The new Europe’ by Bernard Newman page 366 (1972)~

    “The Albanians are the oldest original inhabitants of the Balkan Peninsula…’
    ~The world book: organized knowledge in story and picture‎ – Page 147
    by Michael Vincent O’Shea, Ellsworth D. Foster, George Herbert Locke  1917

    “They are the direct descedants of the ancient Illyrians, Macedonians, Epirotes,
    the offspring of the Pelasgians…’
    ~The misionary review of the world~ Page 780

    “...Arnauts, or Albanians, as lineal descendants of the Illyrians and
    (Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland‎ – Page 232
    by Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland,  1879)

    “ALBANIANS. – The Albanian people are descended from the most ancient of all the races in the Balkan peninsula; their language is the oldest language spoken in Europe”

Without question, Albanians justly should be considering as the most ancient people in wholly Europe; the archaeological, linguistical, antropologhical and ethnological evidences support strongly Pelasgian origin of Albanians. Let’s start by this point: because of Pelasgian ancestry, the traditional dress of Albanians are nothing else but orginated by Pelasgian dresses.

****One of the most important part of ancient costumes was ‘Fustanella’

-What’s is Fustanella?

The Fustanella is a fold skirt wore usually by men; in modern times, the fustanella is part of traditional Albanian worn mainly by Albanian folk dancers.

What’s about is origin?

Findings of depictions of fustanellas in Slovenia, from areas in which Slovenia was part of Illyria, and inhabitants in several regions of the country wearing fustanellas in the past have lead many researchers and historians
to the conclusion of an Illyrian origin of fustanella, with Albanians having inherited fustanella from Illyrians.

In this picture is shown an Illyrian man with Fustanella (This rock sculpture is found in Maribor in Slovenia dating V century B.C.

In view of fact that Pelasgian peoples (of the same language and traditions: like Illyrians, Thracians, Phrygians, Etruscans and particuallary ancient Greeks) were the main body of ancient populations of Europe, fustanella is spread also in other neighbors of Pelasgians like Romans and Celts. Some Roman Emperors had wore a kind of fustanella. And how was spread at Celts? Well, the fact that Illyrian solders constituted an important part of Roman Army is a key to solve this puzzle.

    The Hungarian sociologist, Baron Nopcsa, believed that the Albanian, or Illyrian, kilt became the original pattern for the Roman military dress, and, because of its similarity to the Celtic kilt, he also theorized that the Roman legions in Britain, through the presence of its Illyrian element, probably started the fashion among the Celts
    (it may also be interesting to note that the Celtic word for Scotland is Alban).

Scottish version of Fustanella

Let’s return at the chief question: lets represent incontestable proofs about using of Fustanella by Albanians from ancientness till nowadays?
The famous Albanian kilt (or fustanella as it is known in the Albanian language) was common dress for men in the 13th century where it was regularly worn by a tribe of the
Dalmatians, one of the Illyrian progenitors of the Albanians.

Although the kilt was once worn by men throughout Albania,
today it is seen only on special occasions in southern Albania,
especially in the Gjirokaster area, and in the Albanian regions of Montenegro, Kosova, Serbia, Macedonia, and Greece.

Lord Byron:
“The Arnauts, or Albanese, struck me forcibly by their resemblance to the Highlanders of Scotland, in dress, figure and manner of living. The kilt, though white; the spare, active form; their dialect, Celtic in sound, and their habits, all carried me back to Motven.
No nation are so detested and dreaded by their neigbours as the Albanese;
the Greeks hardly regard them as Chrystians, or the Turkd as moslems;
and in fact they are a mixture of both, and sometimes neither.
Their habits are predatory; all are armed; and the red-shawled Arnauts,
the Montenegrins, Chimariots and Gedges are treacherous;
the others differ somewhat in garb, and essentially in character”.

In order to misrepresent the history of fustanella and to represent it as
‘Greek dress’ the Greek State had adopted it as National Costume. Today, even
the ceremonial Greek military units wear the foustanella.

But this does not mean that ustanella is Greek! Otherwise, Fustanella continue to be Albanian dress with Pelasgian-Albanian origin.

    “The fustanella, or white kilt, of the traditional Albanian is as common in the streets of Athens as the private soldier’s uniform in London”

    (The classic and the beautiful from the literature of three thousand years‎ – Page 395
    by Henry Coppée – Juvenile Nonfiction – 1895 page 395)

    “the Albanian fustanella, which was adopted by the Greeks after their liberation in 1821 as their national costume..”

    ( The Nomads of the Balkans‎ – Page 60)

The Fustanella is not used only in southern Albania, but also in its northern parts like Kosova and Albanian parts of Montenegro, Sandjak, etc. The below proofs support my claim:

The powerful Albanian ruler of Shkodra Pashallak Karamahmut Pashe Bushatlliu had wore the fustanella.

Albanians in Shkodra (city in Northern Albania)

Albanians in Montenegro

The similarity of Albanian Fustanella with skirt of Alexander the Great is astonishing. Furthermore there are a lot of examples of using Fustanella by Albanians!

The Greek King Otto Wearing garments that are Influenced from Albanians.By Niko Lyrtas (oil painting)Hangs in the Greek International bank Lobby in Athens.


    I guess that these above examples are enough examples to witness Albanian character of Fustanella. The traditional Albanian dress is among many strong evidences (beside linguistic, archaeology, antropolghy, ethnology) about Pleasgian origin of Albanians.

Source: http://www.albpelasgian.com/uncategorized/26.html

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