Albania is a small to mid-sized country on the shores of the southern Adriatic Sea, sharing borders with Montenegro in the northwest, the disputed territory of Kosovo in the northeast, Macedonia in the east and Greece to the south. The Albanian language is indoeuropean, but like Greek, it is an isolate.
Historically, Albania was more often than not down on its luck and a victim of accidental or enforced isolationism from its neighbours or the rest of the world. The enforced version was particularly alive and well during the 45 years of the rather loony local Communist regime installed by Enver Hoxha in the late 1940s. Even today, 20 years and several domestic crises later, Albania is (along with Moldova) still the poorest of European countries. However, its standing has been mostly improving ever since it shook off Hoxha's regime in the early 90s.