-The legend of Berat
Berat, the city of a thousand windows. As most of the cities of Albania there is also a legend about berat. Legend says that two brothers, very brave fighters, Tomorri and Shpiragu, both loved the same girl and they went to a duel for her. Tomorri had a sword and sliced shpiragu with it. Shpiragu made holes in tomorris’ body with a mace weapon. They both died in battle and now the mountains Tomorri and Shpiragu have the wounds of the two fighters; Shpiragu the sliced back from Tomori sword and tomori the holes of shpiragu mace iron ball. The maiden for whom they fought desperately died in tears creating river osum that flows through Berat.
Berat bear witness to a way of life which has been influenced over a long period by the traditions of islam during the ottoman period, while at the same time incorporating more ancient influences. this way of life has respected orthodox christian traditions which have thus been able to continue their spiritual and cultural development.
Berat bears witness to a town which was fortified but open, and was over a long period inhabited by craftsmen and merchants. Its urban center reflects a vernacular housing tradition of the balkans, examples of which date mainly from the late 18th and the 19th centuries.
Some of the most typical traditional elements berat is famous for are iconography and artisan work. Berat hosts a myriad of artisans who have inherited their professions from their ancestors. Berat is also well-known in the art of iconography. Colonies of painters are trained in the art school of berat and many of them decide to replicate this once famous form of traditional art.