Edith Durham: High Albania (1909)

Full online version of Edith Durham’s travels in Albania, early 20th century.

IF a book cannot speak for itself, it is idle to speak for it. I will waste but few words on a Preface. In my two previous Balkan books I strove to give the national points of view, the aims and aspirations, the manners and customs, of the Serbs and of the mixed population of Macedonia.

I would now do the same for the people of High Albania.

From the mass of material accumulated in an eight months’ tour, together with that collected on previous visits to Albania, it is hard to know what to select, and want of space has forced me to omit almost as much as I have put in, of folklore, custom, and tradition.

The land is one so little known to English travellers that I have given rather a comprehensive view of it as a whole than details of any special branch of study, and have reported what the people themselves said rather than put forward views of my own–which are but those of an outsider. Of outsiders’ views on Balkan problems we are, most of us, tired.

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