Dropull

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Dropull
Municipality
Dawn near Jorgucat
Dawn near Jorgucat
Official seal of Dropull
Seal
Dropull is located in Albania
Dropull
Dropull
Coordinates: 39°59′N 20°14′E / 39.983°N 20.233°E / 39.983; 20.233Coordinates: 39°59′N 20°14′E / 39.983°N 20.233°E / 39.983; 20.233
Country Albania
County Gjirokastër
Government
 • Mayor Ahilea Deçka (DP)
Area
 • Municipality 448.25 km2 (173.07 sq mi)
Population (2011)
 • Municipality 3,503
 • Municipality density 7.8/km2 (20/sq mi)
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 • Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Area Code (0)884
Vehicle registration AL
Website Official Website

Dropull (Albanian: Dropulli; Greek: Δρόπολις, Dropolis) is a municipality and a predominantly Greek-inhabited region in Gjirokastër County, in southern Albania. The region stretches from south of the city of Gjirokastër to the Greek–Albanian border, along the Drinos river. The region's villages are part of the Greek "minority zone" recognized by the Albanian government, in which live majorities of ethnic Greeks.[1] The municipality Dropull was created in 2015 by the merger of the present municipalities Dropull i Poshtëm, Dropull i Sipërm and Pogon. The seat of the municipality is the village Sofratikë.[2] The total population is 3,503 (2011 census), in a total area of 448.25 km2.[3]

History[edit]

During the Middle Helladic period (2100-1550 BC), a double tumulus was excavated, in Vodhinë, with strong similarities to the grave circles at Mycenae, showing a common ancestral link with the Myceneans of southern Greece.[4] In classical antiquity, the area was inhabited by the Greek tribe of the Chaonians.

From the Roman period there was a settlement named Hadrianopolis in the region, named after the Roman emperor Hadrian. The settlement was built on a strategic spot in the valley of the river Drinos near the modern village of Sofratike, 11 kilometers south of Gjirokastër.

The foundations of Hadrianopolis were first discovered in 1984 when upper sections of the amphitheater were noticed by local farmers. Italian and Albanian archaeologists subsequently excavated much of the site, revealing a full amphitheater, Roman baths, and changing rooms. The site of the agora (forum) has been detected using ground radar, and excavation is expected in the period 2018 onwards. In the amphitheater, there are post holes for iron railings on first row seats. Also some "changing rooms" - originally for actors - were converted to holding pens for wild animals. This was a site where Romans fed enemies of the state to wild animals.

During the 6th century the Byzantine emperor Justinian I, as part of his fortification plans against barbarian invasions, moved the settlement 4 kilometers southeast in the modern village of Peshkëpi, in order to gain a more secure position. The city is also referred in Byzantine sources as Ioustinianoupolis. Today, ruins of the fortifications are still visible, as are the aqueduct and a medieval Orthodox Christian church.[5]

During the 11th century the city was named Dryinoupolis, a name possibly deriving from its former name or from the nearby river. It was also, from the 5th century, the see of a bishopric (initially part of the Diocese of Nicopolis, Naupactus and then Ioannina).

The bishopric of Dryinoupolis included the region of modern southwest Albania and from the 16th century its center was Gjirokastër.[6] At the end of the 19th century, many inhabitants migrated to the United States.[7]

Villages[edit]

Bilingual roadsign, in Albanian and Greek.

Some of the villages of the region are:

     

Notable people[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Second Report Submitted by Albania Pursuant to Article 25, Paragraph 1 of the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on March 19, 2009. 
  2. ^ Law nr. 115/2014
  3. ^ Interactive map administrative territorial reform
  4. ^ Komita, Nuobo (1982). "The Grave Cicles at Mycenae and the Early Indo-Europeans" (PDF). Research Reports of Ikutoku Tech. Univ. (A-7): 59–70. 
  5. ^ Epirus, 4000 years of Greek history and civilization. M. V. Sakellariou. Ekdotike Athenon, 1997. ISBN 960-213-371-6, p. 154, 191
  6. ^ Albania's captives. Pyrrhus J. Ruches. Argonaut, 1965, p/
  7. ^ Religion in Post-Communist Albania. Muslims, Christians and the idea of ‘culture’ in Devoll, Southern Albania. Gilles de Rapper. p. 7
  8. ^ "Miss Globe International 2012: η Κλεονίκη Δεληγιώργη". politikanet.gr. Retrieved 27 January 2014.