Back when Albania first gained independence as a monarchy in 1912 from Italy, “Hymni i Flamurit” was adopted, and has been kept as the anthem through its period as a Communist/Marxist state and now as a democratic nation. The original title of the hymn was “Betimi mi flamur,” or “Pledge to the Flag.” The hymn was first published as a poem in Liri e Shqipërisë (Freedom of Albania), an Albanian newspaper in Sofia, Bulgaria, in its issue of 21 April 1912. Later that year it appeared in a volume of collected poems by Drenova, under the title “Ëndra e lot” (Dreams and Tears), which was published in Bucharest. The official anthem uses only the first two stanzas of the original poem (the second stanza is used as a chorus). The music was composed by the same person (a Romanian) who wrote the Romanian anthem in use from 1977-1990.