Legend of Rozafa

The castle of Rozafa, located above the Buna river and the city of Shkodra, has a long and tumultuous history. Its origins are shrouded in mystery, dating back to the ancient Illyrian tribes who once inhabited the area. Over the centuries, the castle has been owned and occupied by various foreign powers, including the Romans, Slavs, Normans, Venetians, and Turks, all leaving their mark on the castle and the surrounding landscape.

Legend has it that the castle’s construction was plagued by mysterious structural problems, with the walls continually collapsing despite the hard work of three brothers. A wise old man appeared and offered a solution, which involved burying the first wife who brought lunch to her husband in the walls of the castle. However, the two elder brothers broke their promise and revealed the plan to their wives, who found excuses not to bring lunch. Only the youngest brother’s wife, named Rozafa, was unaware of the plan and agreed to bring lunch, only to learn of her sacrifice upon arrival. She agreed to be buried in the walls of the castle but requested that three holes be left so that she could continue to breastfeed her newborn son, caress him, and move his cradle. The castle never collapsed again, and the legend of Rozafa lives on to this day.