Σάββατο 15 Ιουλίου 2023

Ταξιδιωτικές Σημειώσεις σχετικά με την Κορυτσά Θ. Βελλιανίτης Α Μέρος- Shënime nga udhëtimi në Korçë T. Vellianitet - Pjesa e 1rë -Traveling Notes On Corytsa by T. Vellianites (Part A)





   
Θεόδωρος Βελλιανίτης
Ο Θεόδωρος Βελλιανίτης στο Ημερολόγιον Σκόκου του 188 9  


Traveling Notes On

Corytsa

by

T. Vellianites

Essayist, Historian,

and

Deputy to the Greek Parliament

Translated by

NICHOLAS CULOLIAS, LL.B1

Published by the Pan-Epirotic

Union of America

7 Water St., Boston, Mass.

 

Printed by the

PURITAN LINOTYPE

 

Cambridge, Mass.

1919

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PREFACE

"Associated with the history and the destinies of Greece,

 

as far back as we can trace the distant antiquity, Epirus

has remained through the centuries the hearth of Greek culture and Greek traditions. It suffices, in order to mark the

deep Hellenic character of this province, to recall that it has been one of the holy lands of ancient Greece, and that she

harbored in her mountains, at a small distance from the

modern city of Jannina, at Dodona, the oracle of Zeus himself. (Charles Vellay, L'irredentisme hellenique p. 13).

 

"To the German traveller Weigand, who urged certain villages to give up the Greek schools, the Greek churches, and the Greek language and to adopt Albanian such, the villagers replied with resentment, 'Albania for us is synonymous with

savagery; our fatherland is Epirus; and our ancestor Pyrrhus, the Greek King; as for the language, we prefer to pass on to our children an instrument perfected by our learned Greek ancestors, rather than hand to them a barbarian instrument. We are daily trying to draw nearer to light, to civilization, to

Hellenism.' "

(Victor Berard, La Turquie et l'hellenisme contemporain,

Ed. 2nd, p. 49).

"It is true only Italy and Greece quarrel on the question of Epirus.

"If we wish to form a good opinion of the state of mind

of the diplomats of Italy, we should consult the ethnographic maps of Southern Albania, such as are circulated in Italy.

Everything is falsified at will. The district of Korytsa where

more than one-half the population is Greek, is indicated in these Italian maps as exclusively Albanian; the districts of

Jannina and Delvinon, where the Greeks represent eighty percent, of the total population there, are indicated in these

maps as Albanian districts with here and there a few thin

groups of Greeks." (George Clemenceau, L'homme libre, May

15, 1913.)

These testimonies to the hellenic character of

Epirus will help the reader of this excellent treatise

of Mr. Vellianites to grasp the Epirotic difficulties

the easier. Korytsa is Greek in the opinion of all

those who have lived long enough among its people

to have been able to feel their intense attachment to

Greece. The reading of Mr. Vellianites' "Traveling Notes on Korytsa,'' besides being very delightful, is very convincing that Korytsa has always been a centre of Greek culture, and has continued through the centuries to remain hellenic in sentiment, in civilization, in culture, and in aspirations.

N. J. CASSAVETES,

Director of the

Pan-Epirotic Union of America.

7 Water St., Boston, Mass.

January, 1919.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CORYTSA.

I.

 

The Italian General Ferero was kind enough to assign an automobile for me and to place at my disposal a most courteous first lieutenant that I

might more easily travel the road from Jannina to Corytsa.

These measures were necessary to avoid loss of

time in having my passports examined at the different military posts. At Kalipaki, where there is the first Italian post from Jannina, I was received with much courtesy by the Italian officers with whom I had passed the previous day in friendly intercourse.

We, Ionian Islanders, converse freely with the

Italians; we understand their language very well,

and have delved considerably in their literature.

The dominion of Venice of four hundred years or more over the Ionian Islands has left something of the life, of the civilization, and of the language of Venetians in the cities. Outside the walls of the

cities, however, the Venetian atmosphere left untouched the Greek population, which remained

pure and uncorrupted, as it was in ancient times.

In these islands there were no incursions of foreign

peoples, no crossings of other races; consequently, the ancient Greek character remained pure in the Ionian Islands, and the ancient Greek blood unmixed. We, the older inhabitants of the cities of the Ionian Islands, still converse with the Italians in their own tongue, while the new generation is entirely ignorant of the Italian language. The Italian First Lieutenant assigned as my companion, was a Venetian, and spoke the Venetian dialect, which I myself can use with some facility, and thus immediate friendly relations were established between us.

With much willingness the officers who were my hosts led me through the bivouacs of that small military camp. I admired also the reposeful manner shown by the Italian soldier at mess time. Afterwards we followed the road that passes through the wild and woody mountains of Epirus. The view was indescribable. The brightness of the sky and the clarity of the atmosphere was such that

from a great distance could be distinguished the beautiful delineations of the mountain peaks, behind which one could imagine the Ionian seas.

Stream-ploughed valleys could be seen from the loftiness of the road. Crystal waters were flowing down from the rocks, and birds, undisturbed by the constant roaring of the guns at the distant front, but distinctly heard by us, were singing in the thick-foliaged trees. They, too, had become accustomed to the atmosphere of war. The landscape was so rich and various in its beauty that it seemed to our bewildered eyes like the unfolding of a moving picture of charming scenery not easily found in other lands.

Lofty mountains with abrupt precipices and idyllic valleys abounding with flocks of sheep, succeeded each other. These could serve as scenery

for the idyls of Moschos and Theocritos. Usually, however, the abrupt and the precipitous appeared as nature's great epic and inspired in our souls awe

and fear. We beheld wondrous phenomena of nature.

Those proudly rising mountains were the mountains of Souli, that heroic little democracy, which in the midst of the autocracy, despotism and tyranny of Ali-Pasha, maintained its independence,

fighting constantly and never submitting to the force of brutality. Those other mountains were the Acrokeravnia and beyond, immortal Pindus. Hero-breeding mountains these, the impregnable abodes of those indomitable fighters, who, fleeing the valleys where the conqueror ruled, were there

preparing the future liberation of Greece. Those heroes did never compromise with the new regime.

They always maintained their independence in the mountains and whenever any one of them fell or was seized and his bones crushed by the executioner Ali-Pasha, nature mourned the loss of the hero, as if some Homeric God disappeared from the mountains. Our popular muse is full of such threnology.

"Kleane ta dendra klaene; klaene ta vouna; klaene ta

korphoovunia pou limeriaze; klaene kae e vrysoules me to

kryo nero."

And truly, such lamenting of eternal nature was appropriate to the death of such heroes, who from the day the last Greek emperor fell before the Gate of Romanos, they took to the mountains and by fighting for centuries the Sultans, protested before the civilized world against force and arbitrariness which destroyed a civilization of so many centuries.

Every mountain peak, every crystal fountain, every tree of those mountains tells a story and a legend about the indomitable Klephts. During our passage thither were reviving in my memory the

stories, traditions, and legends with which the life of that Greek land is woven. The charming imaginative creations of the ancient muse and the personalities of the great heroes of Modern Hellenism, whose memory remains indelible in our minds, pressed themselves upon my consciousness and enlivened that mountain world.

 

II.

It was indeed there that the first roarings of the guns against tyranny were heard. From the depths of those forests sprang up the immortal folk songs which are the beginning of our modern poetry. Over those rough and rugged roads, climbed only by wild goats, traveled for centuries inspired monks who brought the National Oracles

of Agathangelos and heralded the Resurrection of the enslaved Greek race. When the revolution broke out, which for ten years shook from its very foundations the then vast Ottoman Empire, it was from those mountains that the leaders came who guided the peasants of Peloponesos and Central Greece to victory, to glory and to liberty. Over

the road they used to go with ease, six years ago the Greek troops went, bringing victory and declaring equality among the peoples who for five centuries had been deprived even of the idea of good government.

These thoughts I was communicating to my companion who was ignorant of the heroic epic poetry

in which this land abounds. My companion seemed surprised and was listening at length to the singing of that inexhaustible poetic fountain. He was well conscious of my being deeply moved at the view of that magnificent scenery, where one of the most beautiful periods of the Greek history has been acted, or rather the epic life of the Klephts which is sung today and will be sting to the end of time by the slender shepherdesses and the agile shepherds of the hills from whom are drawn our bravest regiments, the light girdled troops, which did wonders during our recent wars.

With such impressions we reached Leskoviki, from which we went to Erseka. Thence, until we entered the valley of Korytsa, the scenery was monotonous and melancholy. There are no woods, no rivers, and no charming scenes. Everywhere

there are barren hills and mountains and along the whole distance women and children, many of whom were barely seven years old, were crushing stones for the maintenance of the military road. This toilsome labor impressed one with the struggle for existence which these children of Epirus begin so prematurely. All these children spoke Greek. I asked them whether they were going to school.

They answered me with some bitterness that when

the Greek administration withdrew, their teachers left with it, and that on this account their schools were closed. Their priests, however, had remained, and the church gathers around her these small children, whose ordinary course of life has been disturbed by the war.

Finally, we entered a well cultivated plain surrounded by the mountains of Osiaza, which branch off from the Illizian Tomaros and join Gora on the north. On the north also rise the mountains of Xerovounion and Livaniscos, which are scions of Galitsista. These mountains serve as a blue frame to the verdant plain which appeared before us in

all its beauty. It smiled with that emerald sprightliness bestowed by nature on the northern sections of Greece, which are unvisited by the dog days and but slightly touched by the destructive breezes of

Sirocco. It was about four o'clock in the afternoon when we were entering the plain. And yet, at that altitude, we did not feel the slightest discomfort of the burning heat. A little while before, a benevolent shower had purified the atmosphere and refreshing breezes came down from the mountains.

This plain has a longitude of sixty kilometers and a latitude of twenty; it touches on its northeastern side the town of Viglista, where a gate is formed between Morava and Swesda facing towards the valley of Aleacmon; this valley stretches from the west towards the east and is divided by the river Deavolis, the Eordaicus of the ancients. Besides this river, other smaller streams irrigate the plain of Corytsa, among which is Moravas flowing through the city, and Donnavestis, a short distance from it.

From a height of about one hundred meters we see the entire plain spread out like an immense Oriental rug wth its long river fibrils ; at a distance of a few kilometers beyond, the great Lake Soviane, which I visited the following day, reflected the light of the sun most brilliantly.

As far as I know, the lake is not mentioned by the ancient writers, Greek or Roman. I guess from this that it was formed by Eordaicus later,

and not far in the distant past, through the gradual formation of a cruse for storing part of its waters.

This, one might guess also from the thickets which

are to be seen above the surface of the water. In

this wonderful plain rises Corytsa. We entered

through the broad avenue on which the best of her

institutions are erected. This avenue gives to the

city an entirely European and modern aspect. It

has nothing that reminds one of the cities of Epirus

and of Macedonia. The strongest impression is

created by the Greek Church of St. George, a newly constructed and large church, built on the cite of an old chaplet by George Docos at whose exense there was erected also one of the schools of Corytsa for girls. This neighborhood is called Genimachalas, i. e., new neighborhood. A short while ago the Austrian aeroplanes came down upon this neighborhood, and the church suffered considerable damage. One of the bombs pierced the

dome of the church and fell inside. Fortunately, at that hour the Christians were not attending mass, so that only the icon of the Almighty and the marble floor suffered from the German brutality.

But in the houses round about many were the victims from the explosion. Especially women and children which at that hour, care free and happy,

were playing in the streets. Corytsa is not a fortified city, but the German barbarity makes no distinctions, and drops its murderous materials for no military reason, but simply for the purpose of effecting evil.

The city, nevertheless, in spite of the recent sad event, had not lost its usual appearance, and the crowd passed through that beautiful avenue, which creates the first pleasing impression of the civilization and prosperity of its inhabitants.

But it is not this avenue alone that gives the impression of sprightliness and prosperity. Most of the streets are broad, even the tortuous alleys have

that characteristic charm possessed by the old cities of Epirus and Macedonia. They preserve the ancient Oriental rhythm in accordance with which the inhabitants built their homes in the depths of the gardens to conceal from the conqueror's view their moral and material superiority that they might not arouse his envy and greed.

 

 

 

Shënime nga udhëtimi në Korçë

T. Vellianitet

Eseist, Historian,

dhe

Deputet në parlamentin grek

Përkthyer nga

NICHOLAS CULOLIAS, LL.B1

^

Botuar nga Pan-Epirotiku

Bashkimi i Amerikës

7 Water St., Boston, Mass.

Shtypur nga

LINOTIPI PURITAN

Kembrixh, Mass.

1919

 

Përkthimi nga origjinali në Shqip:

© Pelasgos Koritsas


 Qershor 2023

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


PARATHËNIE

“I lidhur me historinë dhe fatet e Greqisë, me aq sa mund të gjurmojmë lashtësinë e largët, Epiri

ka mbetur ndër shekuj vatra e kulturës greke dhe e traditave greke.

 Mjafton, për të theksuar

karakterin e  thellë helen të kësaj krahine, të kujtojmë se ka qenë një nga tokat e shenjta të Greqisë së lashtë, dhe se ka

strehuar në malet e tij, në një distancë të vogël nga

qyteti modern i Janinës, në Dodonë, orakullin e vetë Zeusit. (Charles Vellay, L'irredentisme hellenique f. 13).

"Udhëtarit gjerman Weigand, i cili u kërkoi disa fshatrave të hiqnin dorë nga shkollat greke, kishat greke dhe

gjuhën greke dhe për të përvetësuar shqipen si të tillë, fshatarët iu përgjigjën me inat, 'Shqipëria për ne është sinonim i

egërsisë, atdheu ynë është Epiri; dhe paraardhësi ynë Pirro, mbreti grek. Sa i përket gjuhës, ne preferojmë t'ia u kalojmë fëmijëve tanë një instrument të përsosur nga paraardhësit tanë të ditur grekë, në vend që t'u dorëzojmë atyre një instrument barbar. Ne çdo ditë përpiqemi t'i afrohemi dritës, qytetërimit, helenizmi.' "

(Victor Berard, La Turquie et l'hellenisme contemporain,

Ed. 2, f. 49).

“Është e vërtetë se vetëm Italia dhe Greqia grinden për çështjen e Epirit.

“Nëse dëshirojmë të krijojmë një opinion të mirë për gjendjen mendore të diplomatëve të Italisë, duhet të konsultohemi me hartat etnografike të Shqipërisë së Jugut, siç kanë qarkulluar në Itali.

Gjithçka është e falsifikuar sipas dëshirës. Rrethi i Korçës ku më shumë se gjysma e popullsisë është greke, tregohet në këto harta italiane si ekskluzivisht shqiptare; rrethet e

Janinës dhe të Delvinës, ku grekët përfaqësojnë tetëdhjetë përqind, nga popullsia e përgjithshme atje, tregohen në këto harta si rrethe shqiptare me aty-këtu ca  grupe të vogla grekësh." (George Clemenceau, L'homme libre, maj 15, 1913.)

Këto dëshmi për karakterin helen të Epirit do ta ndihmojë lexuesin e këtij traktati të shkëlqyer të zotit Vellianit për të kuptuar vështirësitë  në Epir sa më e lehtë. Korça është greke sipas mendimit të të gjithë atyre që kanë jetuar mjaft gjatë mes njerëzve të saj dhe kanë qenë në gjendje të ndiejnë lidhjen e tyre të fortë me Greqinë. Leximi i librit "Shënime udhëtimi mbi Korçën" të z. Vellianit, përveçse është shumë i këndshëm, është shumë bindës se Korça ka qenë gjithmonë qendër e kulturës greke dhe ka vazhduar

ndër shekuj për të mbetur helene në ndjenja, në qytetërim, në kulturë dhe në aspirata.

N. J. CASSAVETES,

Drejtori i

Bashkimi Pan-Epirotik i Amerikës.

7 Water St., Boston, Mass.

janar 1919.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

KORÇA

I.

 

Gjenerali italian Ferero ishte mjaft i sjellshëm sa caktoi një makinë për mua dhe për të vendosur në dispozicionin tim një toger të parë më të sjellshmin që të mund të udhëtoja më lehtë rrugën nga Janina për në Korçë.

Këto masa ishin të nevojshme për të shmangur humbjen e

kohës duke kontrolluar pasaportat e mia në poste të ndryshme ushtarake. Në Kalpaki, ku ndodhej dhe posta e parë e kontrollit italian nga Janina, u prita me shumë mirësjellje nga oficerët italianë me të cilët kalova ditën e kaluar në klimë miqësore.

Ne, banorët e Ishullit Jon, bisedojmë lirshëm me italianët; ne e kuptojmë shumë mirë gjuhën e tyre, dhe janë thelluar mjaft në letërsinë e tyre.

Dominimi i Venedikut prej katërqind vjetësh ose më shumë mbi Ishujt Jon ka lënë diçka nga jeta, qytetërimi dhe gjuha e Venedikasve në qytete. Jashtë mureve të qytetit, megjithatë, atmosfera veneciane e la të paprekur popullsinë greke, e cila mbeti

e pastër dhe e pakorruptuar, siç ishte në kohët e lashta.

Në këto ishuj nuk ka pasur inkursione të popujve të huaj, nuk ka pasur kryqëzime të racave të tjera; rrjedhimisht, karakteri i lashtë grek mbeti i pastër në Ishujt Jon dhe gjaku i lashtë grek i papërzier. Ne, banorët më të vjetër të qyteteve të Ishujve Jon, ende bisedojmë me italianët në gjuhën e tyre, ndërsa brezi i ri është krejtësisht injorant në lidhje me njohjen e gjuhës italiane. Togeri i parë italian i caktuar si shoqërues im, ishte venecian dhe fliste dialektin venecian, të cilin unë vetë mund ta përdor me një farë lehtësie, dhe kështu midis nesh u krijuan marrëdhënie miqësore të menjëhershme.

Me shumë vullnet oficerët që ishin mikpritësit e mi më çuan nëpër bivouacët e atij kampi të vogël ushtarak. Admirova edhe mënyrën e qetësisë së treguar nga ushtari italian në kohën e rrëmujës. Më pas ndoqëm rrugën që kalon mbi malet e egra dhe drunore të Epirit. Pamja ishte e papërshkrueshme. Shkëlqimi i qiellit dhe qartësia e atmosferës ishte e tillë që nga një distancë e madhe mund të dallohej skica e bukure e majave malore, prapa të cilave mund të imagjinohej deti Jon.

Nga lartësia e rrugës. Ujërat e kristaltë rridhnin poshtë nga shkëmbinjtë, dhe zogjtë, të pashqetësuar nga zhurma e vazhdueshme e armëve në frontin e largët, por që dëgjoheshin  qartë nga ne, po këndonin në pemë me gjethe të trasha. Edhe ata ishin mësuar me atmosferën e luftës. Peizazhi ishte aq i pasur dhe i larmishëm në bukurinë e tij sa dukej për sytë tanë të hutuar si shpalosja e një fotografie lëvizëse të peizazheve simpatike që nuk gjenden lehtë në vende të tjera.

Male të larta me gremina të papritura dhe luginat idilike të mbushura me tufa dhensh, pasuan njëra-tjetrën. Këto mund të shërbejnë si peizazh

për idilet e Moskos dhe Theokritit. Megjithatë, zakonisht, shaqej  papritur dhe rrëmbyeshëm, si epika e madhe e natyrës dhe frymëzonte në shpirtrat tanë admirim dhe frikë. Ne pamë fenomene të mrekullueshme të natyrës.

Ato male që ngriheshin me krenari ishin malet e Soulit, ajo republikë e vogël heroike, e cila në mes të autokracisë, despotizmit dhe tiranisë së Ali-Pashës, ruajti pavarësinë e saj, duke luftuar vazhdimisht dhe duke mos iu nënshtruar kurrë forcës e brutalitetit. Ato malet e tjera ishin Akrokeravniet dhe më tutje, Pindi i pavdekshëm.

Këto bjeshkë heroike, të pathyeshme banesat e atyre luftëtarëve të paepur, të cilët, duke ikur nga luginat ku sundonte pushtuesi, ishin aty për përgatitjen e çlirimit të ardhshëm të Greqisë. Ata heronj nuk bënë kurrë kompromis me regjimin e ri.

Ata gjithmonë ruajtën pavarësinë e tyre në malet dhe sa herë që ndonjëri prej tyre binte ose kapej dhe i shtypeshin kockat nga xhelati Ali-Pasha, natyra vajtonte humbjen e heroit, sikur të ishte zhdukur ndonjë Zot Homerik nga malet. Muza jonë popullore është plot me të tilla vajtime

"Kleane ta dendra klaene; klaene ta vouna; klaene ta

korphoovunia pou limeriaze; klaene kae e vrysoules me to

kryo nero."(Qajnë pemët, qajnë malet, qajnë malet ku shkonte, qajnë burimet me ujë të ftohtë.)

Dhe me të vërtetë, një vajtim i tillë i natyrës së përjetshme ishte i përshtatshëm për vdekjen e heronjve të tillë, të cilët nga dita kur perandori i fundit grek ra para Portës së Romanos, ata morën malet dhe duke luftuar me shekuj Sulltanët, luftuan para botës së qytetëruar kundër forcës dhe arbitraritetit që shkatërroi një qytetërim kaq shekullor.

Çdo majë mali, çdo burim kristali, çdo pemë e atyre maleve tregon një histori dhe një legjendë për Kleftët e paepur. Gjatë tonë kalimit atje po ringjalleshin në kujtesën time tregime, tradita dhe legjenda me të cilat jeta e  toka greke është e thurur. Krijimet simpatike imagjinative të muzës së lashtë dhe personaliteteve të heronjve të mëdhenj të helenizmit modern, kujtimi i të cilivë mbetet i pashlyeshëm në mendjet tona, ushtruan presion mbi vetëdijen time dhe e gjallëruan atë botë malore.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


II.

Ishte me të vërtetë aty ku dëgjuan gjëmimet  e para të armëve kundër tiranisë. Nga

thellësitë e atyre pyjeve lindën këngët popullore të pavdekshme të cilat janë fillimi i poezisë moderne. Mbi ato rrugë të vrazhda dhe të ashpra, ngjitur vetëm nga dhitë e egra, udhëtuar me shekuj murgjit e frymëzuar që sollën Orakujt Kombëtarë të Agathangjelos dhe paralajmëroi Ringjalljen e racës greke të robëruar. Kur revolucioni shpërtheu, nga i cili për dhjetë vjet u drodhën themelet e Perandorisë së madhe të atëhershme Osmane, ishte nga ato male nga ku erdhën krerët që udhëhoqën bujqit e Peloponezit dhe Greqisë Qendrore drejt fitores, lavdisë dhe lirisë. Mbi rrugën që ata e kalonin me lehtësi, gjashtë vjet më parë trupat greke shkuan, duke sjellë fitoren dhe duke deklaruar barazinë midis popujve që për pesë shekuj ishin privuar edhe nga ideja e qeverisjes së mirë.

Këto mendime po ia komunikoja shokut tim që ishte injorant i poezisë epike heroike nga e cila ka me bollëk kjo tokë. Më dukej shoku im i habitur dhe po dëgjonte të kënduarit të atij burimi të pashtershëm poetik. Ai ishte i vetëdijshëm për qenien time thellësisht të prekur nga pamja e atij peizazhi të mrekullueshëm, ku një nga periudhat më të bukura të historisë greke ka marrë jetë, ose më mirë jeta epike e kleftëve e cila këndohet sot dhe do të ngulitet deri në fund të kohës nga barinjtë e hollë dhe barinjtë e shkathët të kodrave nga të cilët janë mbledhur regjimentet më trime që kemi pasur, trupat me brez të lehtë, të cilat bënë mrekulli gjatë luftërave tona të fundit. Me të tilla përshtypje arritëm në Leskovik, nga ku shkuam në Ersekë. Që andej, derisa ne hymë në luginën e Korçës, peizazhi ishte monoton dhe melankolik. Nuk ka pyje, pa lumenj dhe pa skena simpatike. Kudo ka kodra dhe male djerrë dhe përgjatë tyre gra dhe fëmijë në të gjithë distancën, shumë prej të cilëve mezi ishin shtatë vjeç, po dërrmonin gurë për mirëmbajtjen e rrugës ushtarake. Kjo punë e mundimshme impresionon këdo me luftën për ekzistencën të cilën këta fëmijë të Epirit e fillojnë kështu para kohe. Të gjithë këta fëmijë flisnin greqisht.

I pyeta nëse do të shkonin në shkollë. Ata m'u përgjigjën me njëfarë hidhërimi se kur administrata greke u tërhoq, mësuesit e tyre u larguan me të, dhe se për këtë arsye shkollat e tyre ishin mbyllur. Priftërinjtë e tyre, megjithatë, kishin mbetur, dhe kisha mbledh rreth saj këta fëmijë të vegjël, të cilëve u është prishur rrjedha e zakonshme e jetës nga lufta.

Më në fund, ne hymë në një fushë të kultivuar mirë  të rrethuar nga malet e Osiazës, të cilat degëzohen së largu nga Tomorin Ilisian dhe bashkohen me Gorën në veri. Në veri ngrihen edhe malet e Malit të Thatë  dhe të Livaniskos, të cilat janë pasardhës të Galicistës. Këto male shërbejnë si një kornizë blu në fushën e gjelbëruar që na u shfaq para nesh me gjithë bukurinë e saj. Buzëqeshi me atë  gjallërinë e  smerald  të dhuruar nga natyra në seksionet veriore të Greqisë, të cilat janë të pavizituara nga ditët e qenit por që paksa e prekur nga flladet shkatërruese të Shiroku. Ishte rreth orës katër pasdite kur po hynim në fushë. E megjithatë, në atë lartësi, nuk ndjenim as shqetësimin më të vogël të nxehtësisë përvëluese. Pak më parë, një rrebesh dashamirës kishte pastruar atmosferën dhe nga malet zbritën erëra freskuese.

Kjo fushë ka një gjatësi prej gjashtëdhjetë kilometrash dhe një gjerësi prej njëzet; prek verilindjen e saj në anën e qytetit të Bilishtit, ku është formuar një portë ndërmjet Moravës dhe Zvezdës  duke pasur përballë luginën e Aliakmonas, kjo luginë shtrihet nga perëndimi në drejtim të lindjes dhe ndahet nga lumi Deavolis (Devoll), Eordaiokos në lashtësi. Përveç këtij lumi, përrenj të tjerë më të vegjël e vaditin fushën e Korçës, ndër të cilat rrjedh Morava nëpër qytet, dhe Dunaveci, në një distancë e shkurtër.

Nga një lartësi prej rreth njëqind metrash ne shikojmë të gjithë fushën e shtrirë si një qilim i madh oriental me fibrilet e tij të gjata të lumit; në një distancë prej pak kilometrash më tutje, duket liqeni i madh Sovianit (këneta e Maliqit), të cilën e vizitova të nesërmen, pasqyronte dritën e diellit në mënyrë më të shkëlqyer.

Me sa di unë, liqeni nuk përmendet nga shkrimtarët e lashtë, grekë apo romakë. Unë mendoj se ky liqen  u formua nga Eordaiku më vonë, dhe jo shumë larg në të kaluarën e largët, përmes mbledhjes graduale formoi  një depo për ruajtjen e një pjese të ujërave të tij.

Kjo, mund të merret me mend edhe nga gëmushat të cilat duhen parë mbi sipërfaqen e ujit. Në këtë fushë të mrekullueshme ngrihet Korça. Ne u futëm përmes bulevardit të gjerë ku janë krijuar dhe institucionet më të mira të saj. Ky bulevard i jep qytetit një aspekt tërësisht evropian dhe modern. Ai nuk ka asgjë që të kujton qytetet e Epirit dhe të Maqedonisë. Përshtypja më e fortë është krijuar nga Kisha Greke e Shën Gjergjit, një kishë e sapondërtuar dhe e madhe, e ndërtuar mbi themelet e një kishe të vjetër nga Gjeorgjio Dokos me kontributin e të cilit aty u ngrit edhe një nga shkollat e Korçë për vajza. Kjo lagje quhet

Jenimahalla,, lagje e re. Pak kohë më parë aeroplanët austriakë kaluan mbi këtë lagje, dhe kisha pësoi dëme të konsiderueshme. Njëra nga bombat e shpoi kupolën e kishës dhe ra brenda. për fat të mirë, në atë orë të krishterët nuk po merrnin pjesë në meshë, kështu që vetëm ikona e të Plotfuqishmit dhe dyshemeja e mermerit pësuan nga brutaliteti gjerman.

Por në shtëpitë rreth e qark kishte shumë viktima nga shpërthimi sidomos  nëgratë dhe fëmijët që në atë orë ishin të lirë dhe të lumtur, po luanin në rrugë. Korça nuk është një qytet i fortifikuar, por barbaria gjermane nuk bën dallime dhe i hedh materialet e saj vrasëse pa asnjë arsye ushtarake, por thjesht me qëllim të kryerjes të së keqes.

Qyteti, megjithatë, përkundër ngjarjes së fundit të trishtuar, nuk e kishte humbur pamjen e tij të zakonshme, dhe turma kalonte nëpër atë rrugë të bukur, e cila krijonte përshtypjen e parë të këndshme për qytetërimin dhe prosperitetin e banorëve të saj.

Por nuk është vetëm kjo rrugë që të jep përshtypjen e shkëlqimit dhe prosperitetit. Shumica e rrugëve janë të gjera, madje edhe rrugicat e përdredhura kanë atë sharmin karakteristik që zotëronin qytetet e vjetra të Epirit dhe Maqedonisë. Ata ruajnë ritmin e lashtë oriental në përputhje me të cilin banorët ndërtuan shtëpitë e tyre në thellësi të kopshteve për të fshehur nga pamja e pushtuesit të tyre epërsinë morale dhe materiale që ata mund të mos ngjallnin zilinë dhe lakminë e tij (pushtuesit).

 © Pelasgos Koritsas

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ταξιδιωτικές Σημειώσεις σχετικά με την Κορυτσά

Θ. Βελλιανίτης

Δοκιμιογράφος, Ιστορικός,

και

Βουλευτής της Βουλής των Ελλήνων

Μεταφράστηκε από

NICHOLAS CULOLIAS, LL.B1

Έκδοση της Πανηπειρωτικής

Ένωση της Αμερικής

7 Water St., Βοστώνη, Mass.

Τυπώθηκε από το

ΠΟΥΡΙΤΑΝΙΚΟΣ ΛΙΝΟΤΥΠΟΣ

Cambridge, Mass.

1919

 

 

 

 

 

Μετάφραση στα Ελληνικά:

© Πελασγός Κορυτσάς

Ιούλιος 2023

 

 

 

 

 

 

ΠΡΟΛΟΓΟΣ

«Συνδεδεμένη  με την ιστορία και τα πεπρωμένα της Ελλάδας, όσο πιο πίσω μπορούμε να ανιχνεύσουμε τη μακρινή αρχαιότητα, η Ήπειρος παρέμεινε ανά τους αιώνες η εστία του ελληνικού πολιτισμού και των ελληνικών παραδόσεων. Αρκεί, για να επισημάνουμε το βαθύ ελληνικό χαρακτήρα αυτής της επαρχίας, να υπενθυμίσουμε ότι σ΄ αυτήν  υπήρξε ένας από τους ιερούς τόπους της αρχαίας Ελλάδας, που φυλάσσεται ακόμη στα βουνά της, σε μικρή απόσταση από την σύγχρονη πόλη των Γιαννίνων, στη Δωδώνη, το μαντείο του ίδιου του Δία. (Charles Vellay, L'irredentisme hellenique σελ. 13).

«Στον Γερμανό περιηγητή Weigand, ο οποίος προέτρεψε ορισμένα χωριά να εγκαταλείψουν τα ελληνικά σχολεία, τις ελληνικές εκκλησίες και

ελληνική γλώσσα και να υιοθετήσουν την αλβανική ως τέτοια, οι χωρικοί απάντησαν με δυσαρέσκεια, «Η Αλβανία για εμάς είναι συνώνυμη με την αγριότητα; Η πατρίδα μας είναι η Ήπειρος. και  πρόγονός μας Πύρρος, ο Έλληνας Βασιλιάς. Όσον αφορά τη γλώσσα, προτιμούμε να περάσουμε στα παιδιά μας ένα όργανο τελειοποιημένο από τους λόγιους Έλληνες προγόνους μας, αντί να τους παραδώσουμε ένα βάρβαρο όργανο. Εμείς καθημερινά προσπαθούμε να έρθουμε πιο κοντά στο φως, στον πολιτισμό, στον Ελληνισμό.' "

(Victor Berard, La Turquie et l'hellenisme contemporain,

Εκδ. 2ο, σελ. 49).

«Είναι αλήθεια ότι μόνο η Ιταλία και η Ελλάδα τσακώνονται για το ζήτημα της Ηπείρου.

«Αν θέλουμε να σχηματίσουμε μια καλή άποψη για την νοητική κατάσταση  των διπλωματών της Ιταλίας θα πρέπει να συμβουλευτούμε τους εθνογραφικούς χάρτες της Νότιας Αλβανίας, όπως κυκλοφορούν στην Ιταλία.

Όλα παραποιούνται κατά βούληση. Η επαρχία της Κορυτσάς όπου πάνω από το μισό του πληθυσμού είναι Έλληνες, αναφέρεται σ΄ αυτούς τους ιταλικούς χάρτες ως αποκλειστικά αλβανική. Η επαρχίες των Γιαννίνων και Δελβίνων, όπου οι Έλληνες εκπροσωπούν 80%, του συνολικού πληθυσμού εκεί, αναφέρονται σ’ αυτούς τους χάρτες ως αλβανικές επαρχίες και εδώ κι εκεί λίγες, μικρές ομάδες Ελλήνων." (George Clemenceau, L'homme libre, Μάιος

15, 1913.)

Αυτές οι μαρτυρίες για τον ελληνικό χαρακτήρα της Ηπείρου θα βοηθήσουν τον αναγνώστη αυτής της εξαιρετικής πραγματείας του κ. Βελλιανίτη να συλλάβει τις Ηπειρώτικες δυσκολίες πιο εύκολα. Η Κορυτσά είναι ελληνική κατά τη γνώμη όλων

αυτών που έχουν ζήσει αρκετά μεταξύ των ανθρώπων της και μπόρεσαν να νιώσουν την έντονη προσκόλλησή των στην Ελλάδα. Η ανάγνωση των «Ταξιδιωτικών σημειώσεων για την Κορυτσά» του κ. Βελλιανίτη, εκτός από το ότι είναι  πολύ ευχάριστη, είναι πολύ πειστική ότι η Κορυτσά πάντα υπήρξε κέντρο του ελληνικού πολιτισμού και συνέχισε δια μέσου των αιώνων να παραμείνει Ελληνική σε συναισθήματα, σε πολιτισμό, και στις φιλοδοξίες.

N. J. CASSAVETES,

Διευθυντής του Πανηπειρωτική Ένωση Αμερικής. 7 Water St., Βοστώνη, Mass. Ιανουάριος, 1919.

 

 

 

 






 

ΚΟΡΥΤΣΑ.

Α’

 

Ο Ιταλός στρατηγός Φερέρο είχε την καλοσύνη να ορίσει  ένα αυτοκίνητο για μένα και να την θέση στην διάθεση μου έναν ευγενέστατο ανθυπολοχαγό ώστε να μπορούσα πιο εύκολα να ταξιδέψω στον δρόμο από τα Ιωάννινα προς Κορυτσά. Τα μέτρα αυτά ήταν απαραίτητα για την αποφυγή απώλειας χρόνου κατά τον έλεγχο του διαβατηρίου μου  στους διάφορους στρατιωτικούς ελέγχους. Στο Καλπάκι, όπου υπάρχει το πρώτο ιταλικό σημείο ελέγχου από τα Ιωάννινα , με υποδέχτηκαν με πολλή ευγένεια οι Ιταλοί αξιωματικοί με τους οποίους είχα περάσει την προηγούμενη μέρα σε φιλικό

κλίμα.  Εμείς, οι Επτανήσιοι, συνομιλούμε ελεύθερα με τους Ιταλούς καταλαβαίνουμε πολύ καλά τη γλώσσα τους, και έχουν εμβαθύνει αρκετά στη λογοτεχνία τους. Η παραπάνω των τετρακοσίων ετών κυριαρχία της Βενετίας  στα Επτάνησα έχει αφήσει κάτι από τη ζωή, τον πολιτισμό και τη γλώσσα των Ενετών στις πόλεις. Έξω από τα τείχη των πόλεων ωστόσο, η ενετική ατμόσφαιρα άφησε ανέγγιχτο τον ελληνικό πληθυσμό, ο οποίος παρέμεινε αγνό και αδιάφθορο, όπως ήταν στα αρχαία χρόνια.

Στα νησιά αυτά δεν υπήρξαν εισβολές ξένων λαών, ούτε διασταυρώσεις άλλων φυλών συνεπώς, ο αρχαιοελληνικός χαρακτήρας παρέμεινε αγνός στο Επτάνησα, και το αρχαίο ελληνικό αίμα αμείωτο. Εμείς οι παλιότεροι κάτοικοι των πόλεων των Επτανήσων συνεχίζουμε να συνομιλούμε με τους Ιταλούς στη δική τους γλώσσα, ενώ η νέα γενιά είναι αγνοώντας εντελώς την ιταλική γλώσσα. Ο Ιταλός Ανθυπολοχαγός που ορίστηκε ως σύντροφός μου, ήταν Βενετός και μιλούσε την βενετσιάνικη διάλεκτο, την οποία μπορώ να χρησιμοποιήσω με κάποια ευκολία, και έτσι δημιουργήθηκαν άμεσες φιλικές σχέσεις μεταξύ μας.

Με πολλή προθυμία οι αξιωματικοί που ήταν δικοί μου οικοδεσπότες με οδήγησαν μέσα από τα μπιβουάκ αυτού του μικρού

στρατιωτικού στρατοπέδου. Θαύμασα επίσης τον ήρεμο τρόπο που έδειξε ο Ιταλός στρατιώτης την ώρα της ανακατωσούρας. Στη συνέχεια ακολουθήσαμε τον δρόμο που περνάει τα άγρια και δενδρώδη βουνά της Ηπείρου. Η θέα ήταν απερίγραπτη η  φωτεινότητα του ουρανού και η διαύγεια της ατμόσφαιρας ήταν τέτοια που από μεγάλη απόσταση μπορούσε να διακρίνει κανείς τις όμορφες οριοθετήσεις των βουνοκορφών, πίσω από τα οποία θα μπορούσε κανείς να φανταστεί κανείς το Ιόνιο Πέλαγος. Από την πάνω μεριά  του δρόμου έτρεχαν κρυστάλλινα νερά κάτω από τα βράχια, και τα πουλιά, ανενόχλητα από το συνεχής βρυχηθμός των όπλων στο μακρινό μέτωπο, που ακούγονταν ευδιάκριτα από εμάς, τραγουδούσαν στα δέντρα με χοντρά φυλλώματα. Είχαν συνηθίσει κι αυτά την ατμόσφαιρα του πολέμου. Το τοπίο ήταν τόσο πλούσιο και ποικίλο στην ομορφιά του, που φαινόταν

στα σαστισμένα μας μάτια σαν το ξετύλιγμα μιας κινούμενης εικόνας γοητευτικού τοπίου που δεν βρίσκουμε εύκολα σε άλλες χώρες. Πανύψηλα βουνά με απότομους γκρεμούς και ειδυλλιακές κοιλάδες με κοπάδια προβάτων διαδέχονταν η μία την άλλη. Αυτά θα μπορούσαν να χρησιμεύσουν ως σκηνικό για τα είδωλα του Μόσχου και του Θεόκριτου. Συνήθως, εμφανιζόταν όμως απότομα  και απρόσμενα ως μεγάλο έπος η φύση η οποία μας έμπνεε  δέος και φόβο στις ψυχές μας. Είδαμε θαυμαστά φαινόμενα της φύσης. Εκείνα τα υπερήφανα βουνά ήταν τα βουνά του Σουλίου, εκείνη η ηρωική μικρή δημοκρατία, που εν μέσω του αυταρχισμού, του δεσποτισμού και τυραννία του Αλή-πασά, διατήρησε την ανεξαρτησία της, παλεύοντας διαρκώς και ποτέ δεν υποτάσσεσαι στο δύναμη της βαρβαρότητας. Αυτά τα άλλα βουνά ήταν τα Ακροκεραυνία και πέρα, η αθάνατη Πίνδος. Τα ηρωογονία βουνά αυτά, τα απόρθητα, οι κατοικίες εκείνων των αδάμαστων αγωνιστών, που φεύγοντας από τις κοιλάδες όπου βασίλευε ο κατακτητής, ήταν εκεί προετοιμάζοντας τη μελλοντική απελευθέρωση της Ελλάδας. Εκείνοι οι ήρωες δεν συμβιβάστηκαν ποτέ με το νέο καθεστώς. Διατήρησαν πάντα την ανεξαρτησία τους στα βουνά και όποτε κάποιος από αυτούς έπεφτε ή φυλακίζονταν και τα οστά του συντρίβονταν από τον δήμιο Αλή Πασά, η φύση θρηνούσε την απώλεια του ήρωα, σαν να εξαφανίστηκε κάποιος ομηρικός Θεός από τα βουνά. Η λαϊκή μας μούσα είναι γεμάτη τέτοια θρηνολογία. «Κλαίνε τα δένδρα κλαίνε τα βουνά· κλαίνε τα κορφοβούνια που λημεριάζετε Κλαίνε και οι βρυσούλες με το  Κρύο Νερό».

Και αλήθεια, τέτοιος θρήνος αιώνιας φύσης ήταν κατάλληλο στο θάνατο τέτοιων ηρώων, που από την ημέρα που ο τελευταίος Έλληνας αυτοκράτορας έπεσε μπροστά στην Πύλη του Ρωμανού, πήραν τα βουνά και  πολεμώντας για αιώνες τους Σουλτάνους, διαμαρτυρήθηκαν πριν από τον πολιτισμένο κόσμο  ενάντια στη βία και την αυθαιρεσία που κατέστρεψε έναν πολιτισμό τόσων αιώνων. Κάθε βουνοκορφή, κάθε κρυστάλλινη βρύση, κάθε δέντρο από εκείνα τα βουνά λέει μια ιστορία και o θρύλος για τους αδάμαστους Κλέφτες. Κατά τη διάρκεια της διάβασης εκεί αναβίωσα στη μνήμη μου τις ιστορίες, τις παραδόσεις, τους θρύλους με τους οποίους η ζωή της Ελληνικής γης  υφαίνεται. Οι γοητευτικές ευφάνταστες δημιουργίες της αρχαίας μούσας και οι προσωπικότητες των μεγάλων ηρώων του Νέου Ελληνισμού, του οποίου η μνήμη παραμένει ανεξίτηλη στο μυαλό μας, έπεσαν πάνω στη συνείδησή μου και ζωντάνεψαν αυτόν τον ορεινό κόσμο.

 





II.

Ήταν πράγματι εκεί που οι πρώτοι βρυχηθμοί των ακούστηκαν όπλα κατά της τυραννίας. Από το τα βάθη εκείνων των δασών ξεπήδησαν τον αθάνατο λαό

τραγούδια που είναι η αρχή του σύγχρονου μας ποίηση. Πάνω από αυτούς τους τραχείς και κακοτράχαλους δρόμους, σκαρφάλωσε μόνο από αγριοκάτσικα, ταξίδεψε για αιώνες εμπνευσμένους μοναχούς που έφεραν τους Εθνικούς Μάντεις του Αγαθαγγέλου και προανήγγειλε την Ανάσταση του το σκλαβωμένο ελληνικό γένος. Όταν η επανάσταση ξέσπασε, που για δέκα χρόνια σείστηκε από τα ίδια θεμέλια η τότε αχανής Οθωμανική Αυτοκρατορία, ήταν από εκείνα τα βουνά που ήρθαν οι ηγέτες που καθοδήγησαν τους αγρότες της Πελοποννήσου και της Κεντρικής Ελλάδας στη νίκη, στη δόξα και στην ελευθερία. Πάνω στο δρόμο που περνούσαν με ευκολία, πριν από έξι χρόνια τα ελληνικά στρατεύματα πήγαν, φέρνοντας τη νίκη και κήρυξαν ισότητα μεταξύ των λαών που επί πέντε αιώνες είχαν στερηθεί ακόμη και την ιδέα της καλής διακυβέρνησης.

Αυτές τις σκέψεις έλεγα στον σύντροφό μου που αγνοούσε την ηρωική επική ποίηση από την οποία αφθονεί αυτή η γη. Ο σύντροφός μου φάνηκε έκπληκτος και άκουγε επίμονα το τραγούδι εκείνης της ανεξάντλητης ποιητικής βρύσης. Ήταν καλά έχοντας επίγνωση του ότι είμαι βαθιά συγκινημένος με τη θέα του εκείνο το υπέροχο τοπίο, όπου ένα από τα πιο υπήρξαν όμορφες περίοδοι της ελληνικής ιστορίας έδρασε ή μάλλον η επική ζωή των Κλεφτών που τραγουδιέται σήμερα και θα διατηρείται  μέχρι στο τέλος του χρόνου από τις λεπτές βοσκοπούλες και τους ευκίνητους βοσκούς των λόφων από τους οποίους αντλούνται τα πιο γενναία μας συντάγματα, τα ελαφρά ζωσμένα στρατεύματα, που έκαναν θαύματα κατά τους πρόσφατους πολέμους μας.

Με τέτοιες εντυπώσεις φτάσαμε στο Λεσκοβίκι, από την οποία πήγαμε στην Ερσέκα. Από εκεί, μέχρι να μπούμε στην κοιλάδα της Κορυτσάς, το τοπίο ήταν μονότονο και μελαγχολικό. Δεν υπάρχουν ξύλα, χωρίς ποτάμια και χωρίς γοητευτικές σκηνές. Παντού υπάρχουν άγονοι λόφοι και βουνά και κατά μήκος του σε όλη την απόσταση γυναίκες και παιδιά, πολλά από τα οποία ήταν μόλις επτά χρονών, συνέθλιβαν  πέτρες για τη συντήρηση της στρατιωτικής οδού. Αυτή η κοπιαστική εργασία εντυπωσίασε κάποιον με τον αγώνα για επιβίωση, τον οποίο, αρχίζουν αυτά τα παιδιά της Ηπείρου έτσι πρόωρα. Όλα αυτά τα παιδιά μιλούσαν ελληνικά. Εγώ τους ρώτησα αν πήγαιναν σχολείο.

Μου απάντησαν με κάποια πικρία ότι όταν η ελληνική διοίκηση αποσύρθηκε, οι δάσκαλοί τους έφυγαν με αυτήν, και ότι για αυτό το λόγο τα σχολεία τους ήταν κλειστά. Οι ιερείς τους, όμως, είχαν μείνει, και η εκκλησία μαζεύε γύρω της αυτά τα μικρά παιδιά, των οποίων η συνηθισμένη πορεία της ζωής τους έχει διαταραχθεί από τον πόλεμο.

Τελικά, μπήκαμε σε μια καλά καλλιεργημένη πεδιάδα περικυκλωμένη  από τα βουνά της Οσίαζας, τα οποία διακλαδίζονται μακριά από το Ηλύσιο Τόμαρο και ενώνονται με την Γκόρα στα

Βόρεια. Στα βόρεια υψώνονται επίσης τα βουνά του Ξεροβουνίου και Λιβανίσκου, που είναι γόνοι του Γκαλίτσιστα. Αυτά τα βουνά χρησιμεύαν ως μπλε πλαίσιο στην κατάφυτη πεδιάδα που εμφανίστηκε μπροστά μας με όλη της την  ομορφιά. Χαμογέλασε μ' εκείνο το ζωηρό  σμαραγδένιο χρώμα που χαρίζει η φύση στα βόρεια τμήματα Ελλάδος, που έμειναν χωρίς επισκέπτες από τις μέρες των σκύλων, αλλά ελαφρώς αγγιγμένο από τα καταστροφικά αεράκια του Σιρόκο. Ήταν περίπου τέσσερις το απόγευμα όταν μπαίναμε στον κάμπο. Κι όμως, σε αυτό

 υψόμετρο, δεν νιώσαμε την παραμικρή ενόχληση από τον καύσωνα. Λίγη ώρα πριν, μια καλή καταιγίδα είχε καθαρίσει την ατμόσφαιρα και δροσιστικά αεράκια κατέβηκαν από τα βουνά.

Αυτή η πεδιάδα έχει γεωγραφικό μήκος εξήντα χιλιόμετρα και γεωγραφικό πλάτος είκοσι εφάπτεται στην βορειοανατολική του πλευρά με την πόλη Βίγλιστα, όπου σχηματίζεται μια πύλη μεταξύ του Μοράβα και της Σβέσδα (Σελασφόρου) που βλέπει προς την κοιλάδα του Αλιάκμονα.

Αυτή η κοιλάδα εκτείνεται από το δυτικά προς τα ανατολικά και χωρίζεται από τον ποταμό Δεαβόλιο, ο Εορδαϊκός των αρχαίων. Εκτός από αυτό το ποτάμι, άλλα μικρότερα ποτάμια ποτίζουν την πεδιάδα της  Κορυτσάς, μεταξύ των οποίων ρέει και ο Μοράβας

μέσα από την πόλη, και ο Δονναβέστης, σε μικρή απόσταση από αυτό.

Από ύψος περίπου εκατό μέτρων εμείς βλέπαμε ολόκληρη την πεδιάδα απλωμένη σαν ένα απέραντο ανατολίτικο χαλί με τα μακριά ινίδια του ποταμού. σε απόσταση λίγων χιλιόμετρα πιο πέρα, η μεγάλη λίμνη της Σοβιάννης που επισκέφτηκα την επόμενη μέρα, αντανακλούσε το φως του ήλιου πιο λαμπρό.

Από όσο γνωρίζω, η λίμνη δεν αναφέρεται από τους αρχαίους συγγραφείς, Έλληνες ή Ρωμαίους. Υποθέτω από αυτό που σχηματίστηκε από τον Εορδαϊκό αργότερα, και όχι πολύ στο μακρινό παρελθόν, μέσω του σταδιακού σχηματισμού δεξαμενής για την αποθήκευση μέρους των  υδάτων του.

Αυτό, θα μπορούσε κανείς να το μαντέψει και από τα αλσύλλια που πρέπει να φαίνονται πάνω από την επιφάνεια του νερού. Σε αυτή την υπέροχη πεδιάδα υψώνεται η Κορυτσά. Μπήκαμε μέσα από την ευρεία λεωφόρο στην οποία  έχουν ιδρυθεί το καλύτερο τηςιδρύματα. Αυτή η λεωφόρος δίνει στην πόλη μια εντελώς ευρωπαϊκή και σύγχρονη όψη. Η Κορυτσά δεν έχει τίποτα που να θυμίζει τις πόλεις της Ηπείρου και της Μακεδονίας. Η πιο έντονη εντύπωση είναι

αυτή που δημιουργείται  από την Ελληνική Εκκλησία του Αγίου Γεωργίου, νεόδμητη και μεγάλη εκκλησία, χτισμένη πάνω στην παραπομπή σε ένα παλιό παρεκκλήσι του Γεωργίου Δώκου από τον οποίο εκεί ανεγέρθηκε και ένα από τα σχολεία της Κορυτσάς για κορίτσια. Αυτή η γείτονα λέγεται Γιενημαχαλάς, αλλιώς, η νέα γειτονιά. Λίγο πριν τα αυστριακά αεροπλάνα βομβάρδισαν  αυτή την γειτονιά και η εκκλησία υπέστη σημαντικές ζημιές. Μία από τις βόμβες τρύπησε το τρούλο της εκκλησίας και έπεσε μέσα. Ευτυχώς, εκείνη την ώρα οι Χριστιανοί δεν παρακολουθούσαν τη λειτουργία, και έτσι μόνο η εικόνα του Παντοδύναμου και το μαρμάρινο δάπεδο υπέφεραν από τη γερμανική θηριωδία.

Αλλά στα γύρω σπίτια πολλά ήταν τα θύματα από την έκρηξη. Ειδικά οι γυναίκες και τα παιδιά που εκείνη την ώρα, ελεύθερα και χαρούμενα, έπαιζαν στους δρόμους. Η Κορυτσά δεν είναι οχυρωμένη πόλη, αλλά η γερμανική βαρβαρότητα δεν κάνει διακρίσεις και ρίχνει τα δολοφονικά της υλικά χωρίς κανένα στρατιωτικό λόγο,  απλώς με σκοπό την πραγματοποίηση του κακού.

Η πόλη, ωστόσο, παρά το πρόσφατο θλιβερό γεγονός, δεν είχε χάσει τη συνηθισμένη του εμφάνιση, και το πλήθος περνούσε από εκείνη την όμορφη λεωφόρο, που δημιουργεί την πρώτη ευχάριστη εντύπωση για τον πολιτισμό και την ευημερία των κατοίκων της.

Αλλά δεν είναι μόνο αυτή η λεωφόρος που δίνει την εντύπωση της φωτεινότητας και της ευημερίας. Οι περισσότεροι από τους δρόμους είναι φαρδιοί, ακόμη και τα δαιδαλώδη σοκάκια έχουν εκείνη τη χαρακτηριστική γοητεία που κατείχαν οι παλιές πόλεις της Ηπείρου και της Μακεδονίας. Διατηρούν τον αρχαίο ανατολίτικο ρυθμό σύμφωνα με τον οποίο οι κάτοικοι έχτισαν τα σπίτια τους στα βάθη των κήπων για να κρύψουν από την άποψη του κατακτητή τους την ηθική και υλική ανωτερότητα και ίσως να μην διεγείρουν τον φθόνο και την απληστία.

© Πελασγός Κορυτσάς

Ιούλιος 2023

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

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