September 27, 2009

Šadervan Mahala in Prizren (Metohija)

Next to the Maraš Mahala (from the last post) is another old district of Prizren that gives to this city a charming atmosphere: the Šadervan Mahala.

Theoretically Mosques and Churches stands here next to another and there are big efforts to convince that Prizren is a multi-ethnic city. The reality is far away from that!
What concernes the multi-ethnicity here some numbers from 2007 (from wikipedia): The population of 171'464 inhabitants is composed of: 81,6 % Albanians, 9,6 % Bosniaks, 6,4 % Turks, 2,3 % Roma und 0,09 % Serbs. It makes 94% Muslims.

And to be honest, if you wanna get treated friendly by the locals (and they are friendly, no doubts) DON'T SPEAK SERBIAN!

The old commercial center of Prizren is all around Šadervan Square so the district is called Šadervan Mahala. Along pedestrian cobblestone streets are shops, coffee places, bars and restaurants.

Shadervan area in Prizren

The entrance to the Šadervan Mahala crossing the bridge over Bistrica River. On the right is the Sinan Paša Mosque and in the background the older houses that in the center are all just 2-storey high and in earth tinted colors. Most of the houses however are recently built and there aren't almost any old houses anymore.

Sinan Pasha Mosque in Prizren

The Sinan
Paša Mosque one of the main landmarks of Prizren.

The mosque, according to inscriptions, was built in 1615. Thanks to its position and elegant proportions, it dominates over the surrounding part of the town. The enormous dome is fitted harmoniously into the square mass of the building. The interior of the mosque is decorated with geometrical designs, still life, and draperies, while the other parts of the walls are painted in strong light colors.

The mosque dates from the ottoman (turkish) occupation in Prizren.

Shadervan area in Prizren

The Serbian orthodox church of St Nicholas in the very center of Prizren's Šadervan Mahala dates from 1332.

Despite the presence of the German KFOR troops in Prizren, the church was attacked by Albanian terrorists and devastated not during the war but in "peace" times!

Above a picture from TANJUG shortly after the attacks. Today the church is protected by wooden wall. The PDK means Democratic Party of Kosovo.

Bistrica River Prizren

Over the Bistrica River are several old bridges that connect the old districts Maraš and Šadervan with the newer part of the city.


1 comment:

  1. Prizren is a very beautiful example of Balkan Architecture, but unfortunately as in other places around Kosovo i Metohija there are manyh orthodox heritage sites damaged during the pogrom we all know about. This is really sad how people is not willing to cohexist together... really sad.