Brezje, Cerknica

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Brezje Cerknica Slovenia.JPG
Brezje is located in Slovenia
Location in Slovenia
Coordinates: 45°48′33.46″N 14°22′57.99″E / 45.8092944°N 14.3827750°E / 45.8092944; 14.3827750Coordinates: 45°48′33.46″N 14°22′57.99″E / 45.8092944°N 14.3827750°E / 45.8092944; 14.3827750
Country Flag of Slovenia.svg Slovenia
Traditional region Inner Carniola
Statistical region Littoral–Inner Carniola
Municipality Cerknica
 • Total 1.39 km2 (0.54 sq mi)
Elevation 628.6 m (2,062.3 ft)
Population (2002)
 • Total 24

Brezje (pronounced [ˈbɾeːzjɛ]) is a small village south of Begunje in the Municipality of Cerknica in the Inner Carniola region of Slovenia.[2]


The name Brezje literally means 'birch woods', derived from the common noun breza 'birch'. Like similar toponyms in Slovenia (e.g., Brezova, Brezovec, Brezovci), it originally referred to the local vegetation.[3]


A water main was installed in Brezje in 1911; prior to this, the villagers would drive their animals to Cerkniščica Creek northwest of the settlement to water them and would also transport water from the creek for household use. A sawmill jointly owned by several farmers operated on Cerkniščica Creek until 1950.[4]

Mass grave[edit]

Brezje is the site of a mass grave associated with the Second World War. The Kovač Shaft Mass Grave (Slovene: Grobišče Kovačevo brezno or Grobišče Kovačev brezen) is located southeast of Brezje, on the northwest slope of Big Mount Slivnica (Velika Slivnica, 1,114 m). The cave entrance is at the bottom of an 18 m deep sinkhole. The bones of an unknown number of victims and a grenade were found in the shaft.[5]


Church cornerstone, dated 1775

The local church in the settlement is dedicated to Saint George and belongs to the Parish of Cerknica.[6] It dates from 1775.[4]


  1. ^ Statistical Office of the Republic of Slovenia
  2. ^ Cerknica municipal site
  3. ^ Snoj, Marko. 2009. Etimološki slovar slovenskih zemljepisnih imen. Ljubljana: Modrijan and Založba ZRC, p. 79.
  4. ^ a b Savnik, Roman, ed. 1968. Krajevni leksikon Slovenije, vol. 1. Ljubljana: Državna založba Slovenije, p. 41.
  5. ^ Kovač Shaft Mass Grave on Geopedia (Slovene)
  6. ^ Družina RC Church in Slovenia Journal website

External links[edit]