Pal Engjëlli

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His Eminence
Pal Engjëlli
Cardinal[1] [2]
Native name Pal Engjëlli
Church Roman Catholic
Archdiocese Durrës
Appointed 1459
In office 1460
Rank Cardinal-Deacon
Personal details
Born 1416
Died 1470
Nationality Albanian

Pal Engjëlli (Latin: Paulus Angelus; 1416 – 1470) was an Albanian Roman Catholic cardinal, clergyman, scholar, and Archbishop of Durrës[3] who in 1462 wrote the first known sentence retrieved so far in Albanian. Pal Engjëlli is reported to have been a friend, co-worker and close counselor of Skanderbeg. As his envoy, he frequently traveled abroad, seeking for aid in the war against the Ottoman Empire.[4] Pal is the Northern Albanian version of Paul, and Engjëlli is the Albanian form of angel.

Engjëlli managed to convince Lekë Dukagjini to leave Ottomans and later reconcile with Skanderbeg, and also to convince Skanderbeg to violate an armistice signed with the Ottomans.[5]

The baptism formula document[edit]

The sentence was the baptismal formula in the Gheg Albanian (Albanian: Formula e pagëzimit) [6]: Un'te paghesont' pr'emenit t'Atit e t'Birit e t'Spertit Senit. (English: "I baptize thee in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.") and in the Tosk based standard: Albanian: "'Unë të pagëzoj në emër të Atit, të Birit, e të Shpirtit të Shenjtë").[7]

The formula was found in a pastoral letter written in Latin by Engjëlli after his visit to the Church of Holy Trinity in Mat. The letter is dated 8 November 1462. The formula was meant to be used by Albanian priests to render the ritual understandable for people ignorant of Latin. Probably it was meant also to be used by Albanian people in the countryside, unable to take their children to be baptized to a church. The formula was approved by a synod in Mat, Albania, in 1462.[8]

The document containing the baptismal formula is held in the Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana, Florence, Italy. It was discovered in 1915 by the Romanian scholar Nicolae Iorga.[9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ not verified
  2. ^ Information still uncertain
  3. ^ Newmark, Leonard; Philip Hubbard; Peter R. Prifti (1982). Standard Albanian: a reference grammar for students. Andrew Mellon Foundation. p. 3. Retrieved 2010-05-28. 
  4. ^ "Deuxième Conférence des études albanologiques: à l'occasion du 5e ..." 1: 64. Retrieved 2010-05-28. 
  5. ^ Božić, Ivan (1979), Nemirno pomorje XV veka (in Serbian), Beograd: Srpska književna zadruga, p. 380, OCLC 5845972, захваљујући помоћи драчког архиепископа Павла Анђела, који је успео да одвоји Леку од Турака и доцније измири са Скендербегом, а исто тако и да Скендербега наведе на прекид примирја са Турцима 
  6. ^ Carlos Quiles, Kárlos Kūriákī, Fernando López-Menchero (2011). A Grammar of Modern Indo European. Indo-European Language Association. p. 128. ISBN 1461022134. 
  7. ^ Janet Byron (1976). Selection among alternates in language standardization: the case of Albanian. Mouton. p. 36. Retrieved 17 May 2012. in Albanian is the short Catholic baptismal formula (Formula e pagezimit) of 1462.2 The formula is in Geg, and written in Roman script; it occurs within a pastoral letter, itself in Latin, of the Archbishop of Durres, Pal Engjelli 
  8. ^ Anamali, Skënder (2002). Historia e popullit shqiptar në katër vëllime (in Albanian). I. Botimet Toena. p. 311. OCLC 52411919. 
  9. ^ Academia Republicii Socialiste România, Academia Republicii Populare Romîne (1971). "Revue Des Études Sud-est Européennes". 9: 102. Retrieved 2010-05-28.