The Shkumbin (//; Albanian pronunciation: [ʃkumbin]; Latin: Genessus), also commonly Shkembi, is a river in Southern and Southeastern Europe. It is 181 km (112 mi) long and its drainage basin is 2,444 km2 (944 sq mi). Its average discharge is 61.5 m3/s (2,170 cu ft/s).
|⁃ location||Korçë County|
|⁃ elevation||2,120 m (6,960 ft)|
|Mouth||18 km (11 mi) west of Rrogozhinë|
|0 m (0 ft)|
|Length||181 km (112 mi)|
|Basin size||2,444 km2 (944 sq mi)|
|⁃ average||61.5 m3/s (2,170 cu ft/s)|
The river originates in the eastern Valamara Mountains between Maja e Valamarës (2,375 m (7,792 ft)) and Gur i Topit (2,120 m (6,960 ft)) in Southeastern Albania. After descending from the Valamara's, it flows northwards through Proptisht and Qukës with many deep gorges and canyons and passes the Gora Mountains. A significant inflow comes from Gur i Kamjës (1,481 m (4,859 ft)) southwest of Pogradec. Over the course, it flows inside a syncline between the Mokra and Shebenik Mountains in the east and the Polis Mountains in the west. Close to Librazhd the river turns some 50 km (31 mi) westwards of its origin and joins the Rapun stream. At the end the river cross the Myzeqe Plain and forms a small delta in Karavasta Lagoon, the direct proximity of the Adriatic Sea.
The ancient name of the river was Genusus; its middle and upper valley was inhabited by the Illyrian tribe of the Parthini. The ancient Via Egnatia followed the river, giving it the role of a strategically important corridor between orient and occident.
The river is roughly the geographical dividing line between Tosk and Gheg Albanian dialects, with Gheg spoken north of the Shkumbin and Tosk south of it.The dialectal split occurred after Christianisation of the region (4th century AD) and at the time of the Slavic migration to the Balkans, with the river as the historic dialectal boundary which straddled the Jireček line.
On various historical periods it was considered the northernmost natural boundary of Epirus, while during the 5th and 6th centuries it was the cultural border between the Illyrian and the Greek world. During this period the valley of Skumbin constituted roughly the border between the Latin and the Greek speaking area.
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