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Robert Elsie
Albanian Literature

Albanian Authors








Frederik Rreshpja (1940-2006), also spelled Reshpja, was born in Shkodra where he attended school. He later studied law at the University of Tirana. Rreshpja was early to devote himself to literature, his first verse being published when he was nine years old. He was the author of verse for adults and children, and of short stories and novels. In later years, suffering from a mental disorder which isolated him from society, he was not to be convinced that the Communist dictatorship was over and that its secret service, the notorious Sigurimi, was no longer pursuing him relentlessly. With no home or family, he lived on the streets of Shkodra as a beggar and bohemian until his death on 17 February 2006.

Despite his marginal existence, Frederik Rreshpja is a major figure of Albanian poetry. His verse was published in the following collections: Rapsodi shqiptare (Albanian Rhapsody), Tirana 1968; Në këtë qytet (In this City), Tirana 1973; Erdhi ora të vdes përsëri (The Time has Come to Die Again), Tirana 1994; Lirika të zgjedhura (Selected Lyrics), Tirana 1996; Rri sonte te unë (Stay with me Tonight), Skopje 1998; and Vetmi (Solitude), Tirana 2004.