The ObeliskGjirokaster, Albania
This monument is known as “Mëmëdheu (Motherland) ABC”, and celebrates the Albanian language. The Obelisk is located near the site of first Gjirokastra school (in 1908) to use the Albanian language under Ottoman occupation and is a symbol for education in Albania. Under Ottoman rule Albanians were not permitted to use their own language in their schools, so this was a very dangerous enterprise at the time, particularly for the teachers who dared to work there. This is also where one of the most remarkable sons of this city, Eqerem Çabej once lived. The obelisk was created by Muntaz Dhrami, Ksenofon Kostaqi, and Stefan Papamihali, who were all awarded the prize “Honour of the City of Gjirokaster” in 2008 for their artistic work for the city. There are breathtaking views of the city from the Obelisk, especially of the old town districts of Varosh (below), Palorto (on the hill to the west) and Dunavat (higher on the hill and toward the south).