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Zgërdhesh is an archeological site in Albania. It is located south of the road from Fushë-Kruja to Kruja. Zgërdhesh is somewhat of a mystery because it is unmentioned in ancient sources. Some scholars believe, however, that it may be the site of ancient Albanopolis, referred to by Pliny the Elder. The Illyrian settlement here seems to have been founded in the 7th or 6th century BC and flourished in the 4th and 3rd centuries, before being abandoned in the 2nd century BC, when the inhabitants moved to Durrës and Lezha.[1]

Among the remains at Zgërdhesh are 1,350 meters of fortification walls and heavily decayed terraces and towers spread over a hillside of 8.2 hectares. The original city was built on the acropolis but there is little to see in the way of visible remains except a section of the eastern defensive wall, with a tower on the northeast corner. Just inside the entrance are the foundations of an early Christian chapel, a very small building indicating the continued occupation of the site in later antiquity, but also its greatly diminished importance.[2]

The toponym Zgërdhesh first occurs in 1431, in a Turkish document as Ozgurtaè, and subsequently, in 1641, in the Italian chronicle of Marco Scura as Sgurdessi.[1]

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  1. ^ a b Robert Elsie (2010), Historical Dictionary of Albania, Historical Dictionaries of Europe, 75 (2 ed.), Scarecrow Press, pp. 497–498, ISBN 978-0810861886 
  2. ^ "Albanopolis". Retrieved 29 March 2010.