Some of the Gheg tribes, such as the Puka, Malsia Jakovs and Malsia Krues, are partly Roman Catholic, partly Moslem; among fellowtribesmen the difference of religion counts for little.
The name Gheg (Gege-a) is not adopted by the Ghegs themselves, being regarded as a nickname; the designation Tosk (Toske-a) is restricted by the Tosks to the inhabitants of a small region north of the lower Viossa (Toskeria).
The native disposition of the Tosks has been modified by intercourse with the Greeks and Vlachs; while the Gheg devotes his attention exclusively to fighting, robbery and pastoral pursuits, the Tosk occasionally occupies himself with commercial, industrial or agricultural employments; the Gheg is stern, morose and haughty, the Tosk lively, talkative and affable.
The practical autonomy which the Gheg mountaineers enjoy has been won by a prolonged and successful resistance to Turkish domination; as a rule they pay no taxes, they are exempt from the conscription, they know nothing of the Ottoman law, and the few Turkish officials established amongst them possess no real authority.
Since the time of Ali Pasha, who broke the power of the local chieftains, southern Albania has been subject to the central Turkish power; before that period the mountaineers of Suli and Khimara enjoyed an independence similar to that of the Gheg tribes.