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Albania. Province of Kruja. Kruja. Museum for the albanian hero Skanderbeg who fought for years against the turks (ottoman). A painting of one of his battles. George Kastrioti Skanderbeg (1405-1468), widely known as Skanderbeg, was a 15th-century Albanian lord. He was appointed as the governor of the Sanjak of Dibra by the Ottoman Turks in 1440. In 1444, he initiated and organized the League of Lezh', which proclaimed him Chief of the League of the Albanian people, and defended the region of Albania against the Ottoman Empire for more than two decades. Skanderbeg's military skills presented a major obstacle to Ottoman expansion, and he was considered by many in western Europe to be a model of Christian resistance against the Ottoman Muslims. Skanderbeg is Albania's most important national hero and a key figure of the Albanian National Awakening. The double-headed eagle is the national symbol of the Albanians and was used for heraldic purposes during the Middle Ages by a number of Albanian noble families, including the Kastrioti, whose most famous member was George Kastriot Skanderbeg. 26.09.03  © 2003 Didier Ruef