Burgajet Castle

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Quick Summary

Location
41°38'24"N
020°03'15"E
Country
 Albania
Categories
  • Historical
Rating
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Description

Buragajet Castle, or Castle Burgajet, (Albanian: Kalaja e Burgajetit or Kështjella e Burgajetit also known as the Kështjella e Zogollëve or Kështjella e Zogut) was a large fortified house, located in Burgajet in the Dibër County of Albania.

History

It was built before 1860 and it was the birthplace, and family seat, of King Zog I of the Albanians and also Xhemal Pasha Zogu. Jason Tomes described it thus; "A solid rectangular building with two small wings facing into a courtyard. This was Castle Burgajet, citadel of the chieftain of Mati...the biggest house for miles and the only one with glazed windows. The interior was even more distinctive...Fancy furnishings, imported from Austria, had recently become the hallmark of wealth. Salon chairs, draperies, table-lamps, and bric-a-brac..." His family were the traditional feudal rulers of the Mat District of Albania and were large landowners. On ascending the throne, Zog took up residence in a palace in Tirana (with a Summer Palace in Durrës - see image). This (along with it being looted and set alight by the Yugoslav Army in 1920) was a factor leading to Castle Burgajet falling into ruin. Before King Zog was forced to flee Albania he had an ambitious plan to rebuild the Castle but this never transpired; during his reign, however, a plaque commemorated his birth there. When asked why he did not rebuild Burgajet, Zog replied "I was too busy rebuilding my country." The castle was demolished in 1945 by Enver Hoxha and the site of the castle is now marked by several marble stones from the demolished castle.
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