Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Drenova- The Albanian Anthem Lyricist

Aleksandër Stavre Drenova, best known under his pen name Asdreni (11 April 1872 - 1947), was one of the most well-known Albanian poets. One of his most recognizable poems is the Albanian National Anthem, Hymni i Flamurit.

Born in the village of Drenovë, near Korçë, he studied at a Greek school in his village. His father died when he was just thirteen. In 1885, Drenova moved to Bucharest, Romania, where he rejoined his brothers. While there, he was exposed to other Albanian writers and nationalists.

In 1904, Asdreni published his first collection of ninety-nine poems called Rreze dielli ("Sun Rays"), dedicated to Skanderbeg, the Albanian national hero. His second ninety-nine poem collection, Ëndrra e lotë ("Dreams and Tears") was published in 1912 and was dedicated to the British anthropologist Edith Durham. Asdreni's third collection, Psallme murgu ("Psalms of a Monk"), came in 1930.

After a brief return to Albania in 1914, Aleksandër returned to Romania and continued to take interest in the Albanian national movement. He visited Albania again in 1937, but he soon after again returned to Romania, where he lived the rest of his life.

The stamp of Drenova, the anthem lyricist was issued in 1987. A set of four Famous Persons.