Institute of Archaeology [Slovenian]

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The Župna Cerkev Cemetery in Kranj

The Župna cerkev (parish church) cemetery in Kranj offers a unique possibility for a qualitative leap in the archaeological understanding of the Early Middle Ages in Central Europe, and also of the following centuries. With the help of natural science methods (C-14) it enables the establishment of a representative absolute chronology in the area of the southeast Alps, which will be applicable also to the areas of north Italy, Switzerland, Austria, south and central Germany, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia, partly even in Romania, i.e. everywhere where there is similar archaeological material. The Župna cerkev graveyard in Kranj contains more than 2100 archaeologically investigated burials from the time between the 7th and the 18th century, which means that this is one of the largest medieval graveyards in Europe in terms of size and the duration of uninterrupted use. Almost half of the graves belong to the Early Middle Ages. There are more than 1100 objects and more than 700 skeletons available for anthropological analysis (kept by: the Museum of Gorenjska, Kranj).

The Župna Cerkev Cemetery in Kranj, grave 193

An absolute chronology for the Župna cerkev graveyard in Kranj would, together with the results of an anthropological analysis, offer an answer to a series of interpretative problems of Central European archaeology: from the issues of archaeological typologies to the formation of identity groups and the possibility of detecting population migrations. This is a unique archaeological site, whose publication and analysis is a long due desideratum of Slovene and international scientific community.

Project coordinator
Andrej Pleterski


  • Benjamin Štular
  • Mateja Belak
  • Dragica Knific Lunder
  • Lavrenčič Lucija
  • Primož Pavlin
  • Katja Hrobat Virloget, Univerza na Primorskem, Znanstveno-raziskovalno središče Koper
  • Zrinka Mileusnić, Univerza na Primorskem, Znanstveno-raziskovalno središče Koper
  • Project no.

    1.7.2011 – 30.6.2014