e-ISSN: 2671-3659
p-ISSN: 2671-3675
Founded: 2021
Period: Biannually
Publisher: Balkan Studies Foundation


“The Spanish Adventurer”: Ottoman Surveillance of Aladro Kastrioti, the Pretender for the Albanian Throne

Atdhe Thaçi Aladro Kastrioti, Albania, Ottoman Author 0000-0002-5383-5832




This article delves into the intriguing case of Juan Pedro Antonio Aladro, a Spanish individual whose claims of being rightful heir to the throne of Albania captivated European newspapers in 1902. Through an analysis of historical sources and contemporaneous newspaper articles, this paper explores Aladro’s background, his alleged aristocratic connections, and his self-proclaimed lineage as a descendant of George Kastrioti Skanderbeg. This work investigates the response from the Ottoman Empire, specifically the surveillance conducted by the Ottoman Foreign Ministry in light of Aladro’s claims, and highlights the dismissive view the ministry held towards Aladro’s ambitions, characterizing him as an adventurer driven by personal gain rather than as a credible contender for the Albanian throne. The Ottoman authorities closely monitored Aladro’s movements, from his travels to Corfu where he held meetings with associates to his subsequent journey to Naples, which created a state of uncertainty regarding his exact whereabouts. By examining historical records and newspaper accounts, this article attempts to shed light on the perception of Aladro and the broader context of the Albanian situation at the time. It also explores the intricate interplay between European diplomacy and Aladro’s quest for an independent Albania, as well as the skepticism foreign powers expressed towards his claims.


Aladro Kastrioti, Albania, Ottoman, Surveillance, Espionage


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