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Shkodër

Shkodër (shkō´dər) or Scutari (skōō´tərē), Serbo-Croatian Skadar, anc. Scodra, city (1989 est. pop. 80,200), capital of Shkodër dist., NW Albania, at the outlet of Lake Scutari. It is a market center in a fertile agricultural area that produces a variety of crops. Shkodër is the industrial and cultural center of N Albania and has industries that manufacture cement, textiles, tobacco products, foodstuffs, and metal and leather goods. It is also an important fishing center. An ancient Illyrian capital, Shkodër became (168 BC) a Roman colony, passed to Byzantium, and was conquered by the Serbs in the 7th cent. AD Until the fall of Serbia in the late 14th cent., Shkodër was the seat of the princes of Zeta (i.e., Montenegro), who pledged it to Venice in return for a subsidy in the war against Turkey. However, it was captured by Sultan Muhammad II in 1479. Shkodër, known under Turkish rule as Iskenderiye, was the seat of a pashalik. The pashas, often chosen from among Montenegrin renegades, fought for centuries against their Albanian neighbors. Montenegrin troops occupied (1913) Shkodër in the Balkan Wars, but the European powers assigned the city to newly independent Albania. There was fighting in the city during World War I. Shkodër was made a Roman Catholic archdiocese in 1867. The city has a large bazaar and is dominated by a citadel built by the Venetians. It has a Catholic cathedral and several mosques.

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