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Slovenia ( ; sl, Slovenija ), officially the Republic of Slovenia (Slovene: , abbr.: ''RS''), is a country in
Central Europe Central Europe is an area of Europe between Western Europe and Eastern Europe, based on a common historical, social and cultural identity. The Thirty Years' War (1618–1648) between Catholicism and Protestantism significantly shaped the area' ...
. It is bordered by
Italy Italy ( it, Italia ), officially the Italian Republic, ) or the Republic of Italy, is a country in Southern Europe. It is located in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, and its territory largely coincides with the Italy (geographical region) ...
to the west,
Austria Austria, , bar, Östareich officially the Republic of Austria, is a country in the southern part of Central Europe, lying in the Eastern Alps. It is a federation of nine states, one of which is the capital, Vienna, the most populous ...
to the north,
Hungary Hungary ( hu, Magyarország ) is a landlocked country in Central Europe. Spanning of the Carpathian Basin, it is bordered by Slovakia to the north, Ukraine to the northeast, Romania to the east and southeast, Serbia to the south, Croa ...
to the northeast,
Croatia , image_flag = Flag of Croatia.svg , image_coat = Coat of arms of Croatia.svg , anthem = " Lijepa naša domovino"("Our Beautiful Homeland") , image_map = , map_caption = , capi ...
to the southeast, and the
Adriatic Sea The Adriatic Sea () is a body of water separating the Italian Peninsula from the Balkan Peninsula. The Adriatic is the northernmost arm of the Mediterranean Sea, extending from the Strait of Otranto (where it connects to the Ionian Sea) to t ...
to the southwest. Slovenia is mostly mountainous and forested, covers , and has a population of 2.1 million (2,108,708 people).
Slovenes The Slovenes, also known as Slovenians ( sl, Slovenci ), are a South Slavic ethnic group native to Slovenia, and adjacent regions in Italy, Austria and Hungary. Slovenes share a common ancestry, culture, history and speak Slovene as their na ...
constitute over 80% of the country's population. Slovene, a South Slavic language, is the official language. Slovenia has a predominantly temperate
continental climate Continental climates often have a significant annual variation in temperature (warm summers and cold winters). They tend to occur in the middle latitudes (40 to 55 north), within large landmasses where prevailing winds blow overland bringing som ...
, with the exception of the
Slovene Littoral The Slovene Littoral ( sl, Primorska, ; it, Litorale; german: Küstenland) is one of the five traditional regions of Slovenia. Its name recalls the former Austrian Littoral (''Avstrijsko Primorje''), the Habsburg possessions on the upper Adri ...
and the
Julian Alps The Julian Alps ( sl, Julijske Alpe, it, Alpi Giulie, , ) are a mountain range of the Southern Limestone Alps that stretch from northeastern Italy to Slovenia, where they rise to 2,864 m at Mount Triglav, the highest peak in Slovenia. A large p ...
. A sub-mediterranean climate reaches to the northern extensions of the
Dinaric Alps The Dinaric Alps (), also Dinarides, are a mountain range in Southern and Southcentral Europe, separating the continental Balkan Peninsula from the Adriatic Sea. They stretch from Italy in the northwest through Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Her ...
that traverse the country in a northwest–southeast direction. The Julian Alps in the northwest have an alpine climate. Toward the northeastern
Pannonian Basin The Pannonian Basin, or Carpathian Basin, is a large basin situated in south-east Central Europe. The geomorphological term Pannonian Plain is more widely used for roughly the same region though with a somewhat different sense, with only th ...
, a continental climate is more pronounced.
Ljubljana Ljubljana (also known by other Ljubljana#Name, historical names) is the Capital city, capital and largest city of Slovenia. It is the country's cultural, educational, economic, political and administrative center. During antiquity, a Roman city ...
, the capital and largest city of Slovenia, is geographically situated near the centre of the country. Slovenia has historically been the crossroads of Slavic, Germanic, and Romance languages and cultures. Its territory has been part of many different states: the
Roman Empire The Roman Empire ( la, Imperium Romanum ; grc-gre, Βασιλεία τῶν Ῥωμαίων, Basileía tôn Rhōmaíōn) was the post- Republican period of ancient Rome. As a polity, it included large territorial holdings around the Medit ...
, the
Byzantine Empire The Byzantine Empire, also referred to as the Eastern Roman Empire or Byzantium, was the continuation of the Roman Empire primarily in its eastern provinces during Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, when its capital city was Constanti ...
, the
Carolingian Empire The Carolingian Empire (800–888) was a large Frankish-dominated empire in western and central Europe during the Early Middle Ages. It was ruled by the Carolingian dynasty, which had ruled as kings of the Franks since 751 and as kings of the ...
, the
Holy Roman Empire The Holy Roman Empire was a political entity in Western, Central, and Southern Europe that developed during the Early Middle Ages and continued until its dissolution in 1806 during the Napoleonic Wars. From the accession of Otto I in 962 ...
, the
Kingdom of Hungary The Kingdom of Hungary was a monarchy in Central Europe that existed for nearly a millennium, from the Middle Ages into the 20th century. The Principality of Hungary emerged as a Christian kingdom upon the coronation of the first king Stephe ...
, the
Republic of Venice The Republic of Venice ( vec, Repùblega de Venèsia) or Venetian Republic ( vec, Repùblega Vèneta, links=no), traditionally known as La Serenissima ( en, Most Serene Republic of Venice, italics=yes; vec, Serenìsima Repùblega de Venèsia ...
, the
Illyrian Provinces The Illyrian Provinces sl, Ilirske province hr, Ilirske provincije sr, Илирске провинције it, Province illirichegerman: Illyrische Provinzen, group=note were an autonomous province of France during the First French Empire that ...
of Napoleon's
First French Empire The First French Empire, officially the French Republic, then the French Empire (; Latin: ) after 1809, also known as Napoleonic France, was the empire ruled by Napoleon Bonaparte, who established French hegemony over much of continental E ...
, the
Austrian Empire The Austrian Empire (german: link=no, Kaiserthum Oesterreich, modern spelling , ) was a Central- Eastern European multinational great power from 1804 to 1867, created by proclamation out of the realms of the Habsburgs. During its existence, ...
, and the Austro-Hungarian Empire. In October 1918, the Slovenes co-founded the
State of Slovenes, Croats, and Serbs The State of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs ( sh, Država Slovenaca, Hrvata i Srba / ; sl, Država Slovencev, Hrvatov in Srbov) was a political entity that was constituted in October 1918, at the end of World War I, by Slovenes, Croats and Serbs ( ...
. In December 1918, they merged with the
Kingdom of Serbia The Kingdom of Serbia ( sr-cyr, Краљевина Србија, Kraljevina Srbija) was a country located in the Balkans which was created when the ruler of the Principality of Serbia, Milan I, was proclaimed king in 1882. Since 1817, the Princ ...
into the
Kingdom of Yugoslavia The Kingdom of Yugoslavia ( sh-Latn-Cyrl, separator=" / ", Kraljevina Jugoslavija, Краљевина Југославија; sl, Kraljevina Jugoslavija) was a state in Southeast and Central Europe that existed from 1918 until 1941. From 191 ...
. During
World War II World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a world war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. It involved the vast majority of the world's countries—including all of the great powers—forming two opposing ...
,
Germany Germany,, officially the Federal Republic of Germany, is a country in Central Europe. It is the second most populous country in Europe after Russia, and the most populous member state of the European Union. Germany is situated betwee ...
,
Italy Italy ( it, Italia ), officially the Italian Republic, ) or the Republic of Italy, is a country in Southern Europe. It is located in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, and its territory largely coincides with the Italy (geographical region) ...
, and
Hungary Hungary ( hu, Magyarország ) is a landlocked country in Central Europe. Spanning of the Carpathian Basin, it is bordered by Slovakia to the north, Ukraine to the northeast, Romania to the east and southeast, Serbia to the south, Croa ...
occupied and annexed Slovenia, with a tiny area transferred to the
Independent State of Croatia The Independent State of Croatia ( sh, Nezavisna Država Hrvatska, NDH; german: Unabhängiger Staat Kroatien; it, Stato indipendente di Croazia) was a World War II-era puppet state of Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy (1922–1943), Fascist It ...
, a newly declared
Nazi Nazism ( ; german: Nazismus), the common name in English for National Socialism (german: Nationalsozialismus, ), is the far-right totalitarian political ideology and practices associated with Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party (NSDAP) in N ...
puppet state A puppet state, puppet régime, puppet government or dummy government, is a state that is ''de jure'' independent but ''de facto'' completely dependent upon an outside power and subject to its orders.Compare: Puppet states have nominal sover ...
. In 1945, it again became part of
Yugoslavia Yugoslavia (; sh-Latn-Cyrl, separator=" / ", Jugoslavija, Југославија ; sl, Jugoslavija ; mk, Југославија ;; rup, Iugoslavia; hu, Jugoszlávia; rue, label= Pannonian Rusyn, Югославия, translit=Juhoslavij ...
. Post-war, Yugoslavia was allied with the
Eastern Bloc The Eastern Bloc, also known as the Communist Bloc and the Soviet Bloc, was the group of socialist states of Central and Eastern Europe, East Asia, Southeast Asia, Africa, and Latin America under the influence of the Soviet Union that existed ...
, but after the
Tito–Stalin split The Tito–Stalin split or the Yugoslav–Soviet split was the culmination of a conflict between the political leaderships of Yugoslavia and the Soviet Union, under Josip Broz Tito and Joseph Stalin, respectively, in the years following World ...
of 1948, it never subscribed to the
Warsaw Pact The Warsaw Pact (WP) or Treaty of Warsaw, formally the Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Mutual Assistance, was a collective defense treaty signed in Warsaw, Poland, between the Soviet Union and seven other Eastern Bloc socialist republi ...
, and in 1961 it became one of the founders of the
Non-Aligned Movement The Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) is a forum of 120 countries that are not formally aligned with or against any major power bloc. After the United Nations, it is the largest grouping of states worldwide. The movement originated in the aftermath ...
. In June 1991, Slovenia became the first
republic A republic () is a "state in which power rests with the people or their representatives; specifically a state without a monarchy" and also a "government, or system of government, of such a state." Previously, especially in the 17th and 18th ...
to split from Yugoslavia and become an independent
sovereign state A sovereign state or sovereign country, is a political entity represented by one central government that has supreme legitimate authority over territory. International law defines sovereign states as having a permanent population, defined terr ...
. Slovenia is a
developed country A developed country (or industrialized country, high-income country, more economically developed country (MEDC), advanced country) is a sovereign state that has a high quality of life, developed economy and advanced technological infrastr ...
, with a high-income economy ranking highly in the
Human Development Index The Human Development Index (HDI) is a statistic composite index of life expectancy, education (mean years of schooling completed and expected years of schooling upon entering the education system), and per capita income indicators, ...
. The Gini coefficient rates its
income inequality There are wide varieties of economic inequality, most notably income inequality measured using the distribution of income (the amount of money people are paid) and wealth inequality measured using the distribution of wealth (the amount of w ...
among the lowest in the world. It is a member of the
United Nations The United Nations (UN) is an intergovernmental organization whose stated purposes are to maintain international peace and security, develop friendly relations among nations, achieve international cooperation, and be a centre for harmonizi ...
, the
European Union The European Union (EU) is a supranational political and economic union of member states that are located primarily in Europe. The union has a total area of and an estimated total population of about 447million. The EU has often been ...
, the
Eurozone The euro area, commonly called eurozone (EZ), is a currency union of 19 member states of the European Union (EU) that have adopted the euro ( €) as their primary currency and sole legal tender, and have thus fully implemented EMU polici ...
, the
Schengen Area The Schengen Area ( , ) is an area comprising 27 European countries that have officially abolished all passport and all other types of border control at their mutual borders. Being an element within the wider area of freedom, security and j ...
, the
OSCE The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) is the world's largest regional security-oriented intergovernmental organization with observer status at the United Nations. Its mandate includes issues such as arms control, pro ...
, the
OECD The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD; french: Organisation de coopération et de développement économiques, ''OCDE'') is an intergovernmental organisation with 38 member countries, founded in 1961 to stimulate e ...
, the
Council of Europe The Council of Europe (CoE; french: Conseil de l'Europe, ) is an international organisation founded in the wake of World War II to uphold human rights, democracy and the rule of law in Europe. Founded in 1949, it has 46 member states, with a p ...
, and
NATO The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO, ; french: Organisation du traité de l'Atlantique nord, ), also called the North Atlantic Alliance, is an intergovernmental military alliance between 30 member states – 28 European and two Nor ...
.


Etymology

Slovenia's name means 'land of the
Slovenes The Slovenes, also known as Slovenians ( sl, Slovenci ), are a South Slavic ethnic group native to Slovenia, and adjacent regions in Italy, Austria and Hungary. Slovenes share a common ancestry, culture, history and speak Slovene as their na ...
' in Slovene and other
South Slavic languages The South Slavic languages are one of three branches of the Slavic languages. There are approximately 30 million speakers, mainly in the Balkans. These are separated geographically from speakers of the other two Slavic branches ( West and East ...
. It is thus a
cognate In historical linguistics, cognates or lexical cognates are sets of words in different languages that have been inherited in direct descent from an etymological ancestor in a common parent language. Because language change can have radical ef ...
of the words ''
Slavonia Slavonia (; hr, Slavonija) is, with Dalmatia, Croatia proper, and Istria, one of the four historical regions of Croatia. Taking up the east of the country, it roughly corresponds with five Croatian counties: Brod-Posavina, Osijek-Baranja ...
'', ''
Slovakia Slovakia (; sk, Slovensko ), officially the Slovak Republic ( sk, Slovenská republika, links=no ), is a landlocked country in Central Europe. It is bordered by Poland to the north, Ukraine to the east, Hungary to the south, Austria to the ...
'', and '' Slavia''. The etymology of itself remains uncertain. The reconstructed autonym ' is usually derived from the word ''slovo'' 'word', originally denoting 'people who speak (the same language)'; i.e., people who understand each other. This is in contrast to the Slavic word denoting German people, namely , meaning 'silent, mute people' (from Slavic ' mute, mumbling'). The word ''slovo'' 'word' and the related ''slava'' 'glory, fame' and ''slukh'' 'hearing' originate from the
Proto-Indo-European Proto-Indo-European (PIE) is the reconstructed common ancestor of the Indo-European language family. Its proposed features have been derived by linguistic reconstruction from documented Indo-European languages. No direct record of Proto-Indo-E ...
root 'be spoken of, glory', cognate with Ancient Greek ( 'fame'), as in the name
Pericles Pericles (; grc-gre, Περικλῆς; c. 495 – 429 BC) was a Greek politician and general during the Golden Age of Athens. He was prominent and influential in Athenian politics, particularly between the Greco-Persian Wars and the Pelo ...
, Latin 'be called', and English . The modern Slovene state originates from the Slovene National Liberation Committee (SNOS) held on 19 February 1944. They officially named the state as ''Federal Slovenia'' (), a unit within the Yugoslav federation. On 20 February 1946, Federal Slovenia was renamed the ''People's Republic of Slovenia'' (''Ljudska republika Slovenija''). It retained this name until 9 April 1963, when its name was changed again, this time to the ''Socialist Republic of Slovenia'' ( sl, Socialistična republika Slovenija). On 8 March 1990, SR Slovenia removed the prefix "Socialist" from its name, becoming the ''Republic of Slovenia''; it remained a part of the
Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia The Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, commonly referred to as SFR Yugoslavia or simply as Yugoslavia, was a country in Central and Southeast Europe. It emerged in 1945, following World War II, and lasted until 1992, with the breakup of Yu ...
until 25 June 1991.


History


Prehistory to Slavic settlement


Prehistory

Present-day Slovenia has been inhabited since
prehistoric Prehistory, also known as pre-literary history, is the period of human history between the use of the first stone tools by hominins 3.3 million years ago and the beginning of recorded history with the invention of writing systems. The use o ...
times. There is evidence of human habitation from around 250,000 years ago. A pierced cave bear bone, dating from 43100 ± 700 BP, found in 1995 in Divje Babe cave near
Cerkno Cerkno (; it, Circhina; ger, Kirchheim) is a small town in the Littoral region of Slovenia. It has around 2,000 inhabitants and is the administrative centre of the Cerkno Hills. It is the seat of the Municipality of Cerkno. Cerkno is a small ...
, is considered a kind of flute, and possibly the oldest musical instrument discovered in the world. In the 1920s and 1930s, artifacts belonging to the
Cro-Magnon Early European modern humans (EEMH), or Cro-Magnons, were the first early modern humans (''Homo sapiens'') to settle in Europe, migrating from Western Asia, continuously occupying the continent possibly from as early as 56,800 years ago. They i ...
, such as pierced bones, bone points, and a needle were found by archaeologist Srečko Brodar in Potok Cave. In 2002, remains of pile dwellings over 4,500 years old were discovered in the Ljubljana Marsh, now protected as a
UNESCO World Heritage Site A World Heritage Site is a landmark or area with legal protection by an international convention administered by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). World Heritage Sites are designated by UNESCO for h ...
, along with the Ljubljana Marshes Wooden Wheel, the oldest wooden wheel in the world. It shows that wooden wheels appeared almost simultaneously in Mesopotamia and Europe. In the transition period between the
Bronze Age The Bronze Age is a historic period, lasting approximately from 3300 BC to 1200 BC, characterized by the use of bronze, the presence of writing in some areas, and other early features of urban civilization. The Bronze Age is the second p ...
to the
Iron Age The Iron Age is the final epoch of the three-age division of the prehistory and protohistory of humanity. It was preceded by the Stone Age ( Paleolithic, Mesolithic, Neolithic) and the Bronze Age ( Chalcolithic). The concept has been mostl ...
, the Urnfield culture flourished. Archaeological remains dating from the
Hallstatt period The Hallstatt culture was the predominant Western and Central European culture of Late Bronze Age (Hallstatt A, Hallstatt B) from the 12th to 8th centuries BC and Early Iron Age Europe (Hallstatt C, Hallstatt D) from the 8th to 6th centuries B ...
have been found, particularly in southeastern Slovenia, among them a number of situlas in
Novo Mesto Novo Mesto (; sl, Novo mesto; also known by other alternative names) is a city on a bend of the Krka River in the City Municipality of Novo Mesto in southeastern Slovenia, close to the border with Croatia. The town is traditionally considered ...
, the "Town of Situlas".


Roman era

The area that is present-day Slovenia was in Roman times shared between ''Venetia et Histria'' (region X of Roman Italia in the classification of
Augustus Caesar Augustus (born Gaius Octavius; 23 September 63 BC – 19 August AD 14), also known as Octavian, was the first Roman emperor; he reigned from 27 BC until his death in AD 14. He is known for being the founder of the Roman Pr ...
) and the provinces
Pannonia Pannonia (, ) was a province of the Roman Empire bounded on the north and east by the Danube, coterminous westward with Noricum and upper Italy, and southward with Dalmatia and upper Moesia. Pannonia was located in the territory that is now west ...
and
Noricum Noricum () is the Latin name for the Celtic kingdom or federation of tribes that included most of modern Austria and part of Slovenia. In the first century AD, it became a province of the Roman Empire. Its borders were the Danube to the north ...
. The Romans established posts at
Emona Emona (early gkm, Ἤμονα) or Aemona (short for ) was a Roman castrum, located in the area where the navigable Ljubljanica river came closest to Castle Hill,
(Ljubljana), Poetovio (Ptuj), and Celeia (Celje); and constructed trade and military roads that ran across Slovene territory from Italy to Pannonia. In the 5th and 6th centuries, the area was subject to invasions by the
Huns The Huns were a nomadic people who lived in Central Asia, the Caucasus, and Eastern Europe between the 4th and 6th century AD. According to European tradition, they were first reported living east of the Volga River, in an area that was pa ...
and Germanic tribes during their incursions into Italy. A part of the inner state was protected with a defensive line of towers and walls called ''
Claustra Alpium Iuliarum (Latin for 'Barrier of the Julian Alps'; hereby, the term Julian Alps refers to the wider mountainous and hilly region from the Julian Alps to the Kvarner Gulf) was a defense system within the Roman Empire between Italia and Pannonia that prote ...
''. A crucial battle between
Theodosius I Theodosius I ( grc-gre, Θεοδόσιος ; 11 January 347 – 17 January 395), also called Theodosius the Great, was Roman emperor from 379 to 395. During his reign, he succeeded in a crucial war against the Goths, as well as in two ...
and
Eugenius Eugenius (died 6 September 394) was a usurper in the Western Roman Empire (392–394) against Emperor Theodosius I. While Christian himself, Eugenius capitalized on the discontent in the West caused by Theodosius' religious policies targeting ...
took place in the
Vipava Valley The Vipava Valley (; sl, Vipavska dolina, german: Wippachtal, it, Valle del Vipacco) is a valley in the Slovenian Littoral, roughly between the village of Podnanos to the east and the border with Italy to the west. The main towns are Ajdov ...
in 394.


Slavic settlement

The Slavic tribes migrated to the Alpine area after the westward departure of the
Lombards The Lombards () or Langobards ( la, Langobardi) were a Germanic people who ruled most of the Italian Peninsula from 568 to 774. The medieval Lombard historian Paul the Deacon wrote in the ''History of the Lombards'' (written between 787 and ...
(the last Germanic tribe) in 568, and under pressure from Avars established a Slavic settlement in the Eastern Alps. From 623 to 624 or possibly 626 onwards, King Samo united the Alpine and Western Slavs against the Avars and Germanic peoples and established what is referred to as Samo's Kingdom. After its disintegration following Samo's death in 658 or 659, the ancestors of the
Slovenes The Slovenes, also known as Slovenians ( sl, Slovenci ), are a South Slavic ethnic group native to Slovenia, and adjacent regions in Italy, Austria and Hungary. Slovenes share a common ancestry, culture, history and speak Slovene as their na ...
located in present-day
Carinthia Carinthia (german: Kärnten ; sl, Koroška ) is the southernmost Austrian state, in the Eastern Alps, and is noted for its mountains and lakes. The main language is German. Its regional dialects belong to the Southern Bavarian group. Carin ...
formed the independent duchy of Carantania, and
Carniola Carniola ( sl, Kranjska; , german: Krain; it, Carniola; hu, Krajna) is a historical region that comprised parts of present-day Slovenia. Although as a whole it does not exist anymore, Slovenes living within the former borders of the region sti ...
, later duchy Carniola. Other parts of present-day Slovenia were again ruled by Avars before
Charlemagne Charlemagne ( , ) or Charles the Great ( la, Carolus Magnus; german: Karl der Große; 2 April 747 – 28 January 814), a member of the Carolingian dynasty, was King of the Franks from 768, King of the Lombards from 774, and the first Holy ...
's victory over them in 803.


Middle Ages

The
Carantanians Carantanians ( la, Quarantani, sl, Karantanci) were a Slavic people of the Early Middle Ages (Latin: , or "Slavs called Caranthanians"), living in the principality of Carantania, later known as Carinthia, which covered present-day southern Aus ...
, one of the ancestral groups of the modern Slovenes, particularly the
Carinthian Slovenes Carinthian Slovenes or Carinthian Slovenians ( sl, Koroški Slovenci; german: Kärntner Slowenen) are the indigenous minority of Slovene ethnicity, living within borders of the Austrian state of Carinthia, neighboring Slovenia. Their status of ...
, were the first Slavic people to accept Christianity. They were mostly Christianized by Irish missionaries, among them Modestus, known as the "Apostle of Carantanians". This process, together with the Christianization of the
Bavarians Bavarians ( Bavarian: ''Boarn'', Standard German: ''Baiern'') are an ethnographic group of Germans of the Bavaria region, a state within Germany. The group's dialect or speech is known as the Bavarian language, native to Altbayern ("Old Bavar ...
, was later described in the memorandum known as the Conversio Bagoariorum et Carantanorum, which is thought to have overemphasized the role of the Church of Salzburg in the Christianization process over similar efforts of the Patriarchate of
Aquileia Aquileia / / / / ;Bilingual name of ''Aquileja – Oglej'' in: vec, Aquiłeja / ; Slovenian: ''Oglej''), group=pron is an ancient Roman city in Italy, at the head of the Adriatic at the edge of the lagoons, about from the sea, on the river Na ...
. In the mid-8th century, Carantania became a vassal duchy under the rule of the
Bavaria Bavaria ( ; ), officially the Free State of Bavaria (german: Freistaat Bayern, link=no ), is a state in the south-east of Germany. With an area of , Bavaria is the largest German state by land area, comprising roughly a fifth of the total lan ...
ns, who began spreading Christianity. Three decades later, the
Carantanians Carantanians ( la, Quarantani, sl, Karantanci) were a Slavic people of the Early Middle Ages (Latin: , or "Slavs called Caranthanians"), living in the principality of Carantania, later known as Carinthia, which covered present-day southern Aus ...
were incorporated, together with the Bavarians, into the
Carolingian Empire The Carolingian Empire (800–888) was a large Frankish-dominated empire in western and central Europe during the Early Middle Ages. It was ruled by the Carolingian dynasty, which had ruled as kings of the Franks since 751 and as kings of the ...
. During the same period
Carniola Carniola ( sl, Kranjska; , german: Krain; it, Carniola; hu, Krajna) is a historical region that comprised parts of present-day Slovenia. Although as a whole it does not exist anymore, Slovenes living within the former borders of the region sti ...
, too, came under the Franks, and was Christianised from
Aquileia Aquileia / / / / ;Bilingual name of ''Aquileja – Oglej'' in: vec, Aquiłeja / ; Slovenian: ''Oglej''), group=pron is an ancient Roman city in Italy, at the head of the Adriatic at the edge of the lagoons, about from the sea, on the river Na ...
. Following the anti-Frankish rebellion of Liudewit at the beginning of the 9th century, the
Franks The Franks ( la, Franci or ) were a group of Germanic peoples whose name was first mentioned in 3rd-century Roman sources, and associated with tribes between the Lower Rhine and the Ems River, on the edge of the Roman Empire.H. Schutz: Tools, ...
removed the Carantanian princes, replacing them with their own border dukes. Consequently, the Frankish
feudal system Feudalism, also known as the feudal system, was the combination of the legal, economic, military, cultural and political customs that flourished in medieval Europe between the 9th and 15th centuries. Broadly defined, it was a way of structur ...
reached the Slovene territory. After the victory of Emperor Otto I over the
Magyars Hungarians, also known as Magyars ( ; hu, magyarok ), are a nation and  ethnic group native to Hungary () and historical Hungarian lands who share a common culture, history, ancestry, and language. The Hungarian language belongs to the Urali ...
in 955, Slovene territory was divided into a number of border regions of the
Holy Roman Empire The Holy Roman Empire was a political entity in Western, Central, and Southern Europe that developed during the Early Middle Ages and continued until its dissolution in 1806 during the Napoleonic Wars. From the accession of Otto I in 962 ...
. Carantania, being the most important, was elevated into the
Duchy of Carinthia The Duchy of Carinthia (german: Herzogtum Kärnten; sl, Vojvodina Koroška) was a duchy located in southern Austria and parts of northern Slovenia. It was separated from the Duchy of Bavaria in 976, and was the first newly created Imperial St ...
in 976. By the 11th century, the Germanization of what is now
Lower Austria Lower Austria (german: Niederösterreich; Austro-Bavarian: ''Niedaöstareich'', ''Niedaestareich'') is one of the nine states of Austria, located in the northeastern corner of the country. Since 1986, the capital of Lower Austria has been Sankt ...
, effectively isolated the Slovene-inhabited territory from the other western Slavs, speeding up the development of the Slavs of Carantania and of
Carniola Carniola ( sl, Kranjska; , german: Krain; it, Carniola; hu, Krajna) is a historical region that comprised parts of present-day Slovenia. Although as a whole it does not exist anymore, Slovenes living within the former borders of the region sti ...
into an independent Carantanian/Carniolans/Slovene ethnic group. By the high Middle Ages, the historic provinces of Carniola,
Styria Styria (german: Steiermark ; Serbo-Croatian and sl, ; hu, Stájerország) is a state (''Bundesland'') in the southeast of Austria. With an area of , Styria is the second largest state of Austria, after Lower Austria. Styria is bordered t ...
,
Carinthia Carinthia (german: Kärnten ; sl, Koroška ) is the southernmost Austrian state, in the Eastern Alps, and is noted for its mountains and lakes. The main language is German. Its regional dialects belong to the Southern Bavarian group. Carin ...
,
Gorizia Gorizia (; sl, Gorica , colloquially 'old Gorizia' to distinguish it from Nova Gorica; fur, label= Standard Friulian, Gurize, fur, label= Southeastern Friulian, Guriza; vec, label= Bisiacco, Gorisia; german: Görz ; obsolete English ''Gorit ...
,
Trieste Trieste ( , ; sl, Trst ; german: Triest ) is a city and seaport in northeastern Italy. It is the capital city, and largest city, of the autonomous region of Friuli Venezia Giulia, one of two autonomous regions which are not subdivided into pr ...
, and
Istria Istria ( ; Croatian and Slovene: ; ist, Eîstria; Istro-Romanian, Italian and Venetian: ; formerly in Latin and in Ancient Greek) is the largest peninsula within the Adriatic Sea. The peninsula is located at the head of the Adriatic betw ...
developed from the border regions and were incorporated into the medieval
Holy Roman Empire The Holy Roman Empire was a political entity in Western, Central, and Southern Europe that developed during the Early Middle Ages and continued until its dissolution in 1806 during the Napoleonic Wars. From the accession of Otto I in 962 ...
. The consolidation and formation of these historical lands took place in a long period between the 11th and 14th centuries, and were led by a number of important feudal families, such as the Dukes of Spanheim, the Counts of Gorizia, the Counts of Celje, and, finally, the
House of Habsburg The House of Habsburg (), alternatively spelled Hapsburg in Englishgerman: Haus Habsburg, ; es, Casa de Habsburgo; hu, Habsburg család, it, Casa di Asburgo, nl, Huis van Habsburg, pl, dom Habsburgów, pt, Casa de Habsburgo, la, Domus Hab ...
. In a parallel process, an intensive Germanization significantly diminished the extent of Slovene-speaking areas. By the 15th century, the Slovene ethnic territory was reduced to its present size. In 1335, Henry of Gorizia, Duke of Carinthia, Landgrave of Carniola and Count of Tyrol died without a male heir, his daughter Margaret was able to keep the
County of Tyrol The (Princely) County of Tyrol was an estate of the Holy Roman Empire established about 1140. After 1253, it was ruled by the House of Gorizia and from 1363 by the House of Habsburg. In 1804, the County of Tyrol, unified with the secularised p ...
, while the Wittelsbach emperor Louis IV passed Carinthia and Carniolan march to the Habsburg duke Albert II of Austria, whose mother, Elisabeth of Carinthia is a sister of the late duke Henry of Gorizia. Therefore, most of the territory of present-day Slovenia became a hereditary land of the
Habsburg monarchy The Habsburg monarchy (german: Habsburgermonarchie, ), also known as the Danubian monarchy (german: Donaumonarchie, ), or Habsburg Empire (german: Habsburgerreich, ), was the collection of empires, kingdoms, duchies, counties and other polities ...
. As with the other component parts of the
Habsburg monarchy The Habsburg monarchy (german: Habsburgermonarchie, ), also known as the Danubian monarchy (german: Donaumonarchie, ), or Habsburg Empire (german: Habsburgerreich, ), was the collection of empires, kingdoms, duchies, counties and other polities ...
, Carinthia and Carniola remained a semi-autonomous state with its own constitutional structure for a long time. The counts of Celje, a feudal family from this area who in 1436 acquired the title of state princes, were
Habsburgs The House of Habsburg (), alternatively spelled Hapsburg in Englishgerman: Haus Habsburg, ; es, Casa de Habsburgo; hu, Habsburg család, it, Casa di Asburgo, nl, Huis van Habsburg, pl, dom Habsburgów, pt, Casa de Habsburgo, la, Domus Hab ...
' powerful competitors for some time. This large dynasty, important at a European political level, had its seat in Slovene territory but died out in 1456. Its numerous large estates subsequently became the property of the Habsburgs, who retained control of the area right up until the beginning of the 20th century.
Patria del Friuli The Patria del Friuli ( la, Patria Fori Iulii, fur, Patrie dal Friûl) was the territory under the temporal rule of the Patriarch of Aquileia and one of the ecclesiastical states of the Holy Roman Empire. In 1420, the Republic of Venice acquir ...
ruled present western Slovenia until
Venetian Venetian often means from or related to: * Venice, a city in Italy * Veneto, a region of Italy * Republic of Venice (697–1797), a historical nation in that area Venetian and the like may also refer to: * Venetian language, a Romance language s ...
takeover in 1420. At the end of the Middle Ages, the
Slovene Lands The Slovene lands or Slovenian lands ( sl, Slovenske dežele or in short ) is the historical denomination for the territories in Central and Southern Europe where people primarily spoke Slovene. The Slovene lands were part of the Illyrian provin ...
suffered a serious economic and demographic setback because of the Turkish raids. In 1515, a peasant revolt spread across nearly the whole Slovene territory. In 1572 and 1573 the Croatian-Slovenian peasant revolt wrought havoc throughout the wider region. Such uprisings, which often met with bloody defeats, continued throughout the 17th century.


Early modern period

After the dissolution of the Republic of Venice in 1797, the Venetian Slovenia was passed to the Austrian Empire. The
Slovene Lands The Slovene lands or Slovenian lands ( sl, Slovenske dežele or in short ) is the historical denomination for the territories in Central and Southern Europe where people primarily spoke Slovene. The Slovene lands were part of the Illyrian provin ...
were part of the French-administered
Illyrian provinces The Illyrian Provinces sl, Ilirske province hr, Ilirske provincije sr, Илирске провинције it, Province illirichegerman: Illyrische Provinzen, group=note were an autonomous province of France during the First French Empire that ...
established by Napoleon, the
Austrian Empire The Austrian Empire (german: link=no, Kaiserthum Oesterreich, modern spelling , ) was a Central- Eastern European multinational great power from 1804 to 1867, created by proclamation out of the realms of the Habsburgs. During its existence, ...
and
Austria-Hungary Austria-Hungary, often referred to as the Austro-Hungarian Empire,, the Dual Monarchy, or Austria, was a constitutional monarchy and great power in Central Europe between 1867 and 1918. It was formed with the Austro-Hungarian Compromise of 1 ...
. Slovenes inhabited most of
Carniola Carniola ( sl, Kranjska; , german: Krain; it, Carniola; hu, Krajna) is a historical region that comprised parts of present-day Slovenia. Although as a whole it does not exist anymore, Slovenes living within the former borders of the region sti ...
, the southern part of the duchies of
Carinthia Carinthia (german: Kärnten ; sl, Koroška ) is the southernmost Austrian state, in the Eastern Alps, and is noted for its mountains and lakes. The main language is German. Its regional dialects belong to the Southern Bavarian group. Carin ...
and
Styria Styria (german: Steiermark ; Serbo-Croatian and sl, ; hu, Stájerország) is a state (''Bundesland'') in the southeast of Austria. With an area of , Styria is the second largest state of Austria, after Lower Austria. Styria is bordered t ...
, the northern and eastern areas of the Austrian Littoral, as well as
Prekmurje Prekmurje (; dialectically: ''Prèkmürsko'' or ''Prèkmüre''; hu, Muravidék) is a geographically, linguistically, culturally and ethnically defined region of Slovenia, settled by Slovenes and a Hungarian minority, lying between the Mur R ...
in the
Kingdom of Hungary The Kingdom of Hungary was a monarchy in Central Europe that existed for nearly a millennium, from the Middle Ages into the 20th century. The Principality of Hungary emerged as a Christian kingdom upon the coronation of the first king Stephe ...
. Industrialization was accompanied by construction of railroads to link cities and markets, but the urbanization was limited. Due to limited opportunities, between 1880 and 1910 there was extensive emigration, and around 300,000 Slovenes (i.e. 1 in 6) emigrated to other countries, mostly to the US, but also to South America (the main part to
Argentina Argentina (), officially the Argentine Republic ( es, link=no, República Argentina), is a country in the southern half of South America. Argentina covers an area of , making it the List of South American countries by area, second-largest ...
), Germany,
Egypt Egypt ( ar, مصر , ), officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, is a transcontinental country spanning the northeast corner of Africa and southwest corner of Asia via a land bridge formed by the Sinai Peninsula. It is bordered by the Med ...
, and to larger cities in Austria-Hungary, especially
Vienna Vienna ( ; german: Wien ; bar, Wean, label=Bavarian language, Austro-Bavarian ) is the Capital city, capital, largest city, and one of States of Austria, nine states of Austria. Vienna is Austria's List of cities and towns in Austria, most populou ...
and
Graz Graz (; sl, Gradec) is the capital city of the Austrian state of Styria and second-largest city in Austria after Vienna. As of 1 January 2021, it had a population of 331,562 (294,236 of whom had principal-residence status). In 2018, the popu ...
. The area of the United States with the highest concentration of Slovenian immigrants is
Cleveland Cleveland ( ), officially the City of Cleveland, is a city in the U.S. state of Ohio and the county seat of Cuyahoga County. Located in the northeastern part of the state, it is situated along the southern shore of Lake Erie, across the U. ...
, Ohio. The other locations in the United States where many Slovenians settled were areas with substantial industrial and mining activities:
Pittsburgh Pittsburgh ( ) is a city in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, United States, and the county seat of Allegheny County. It is the most populous city in both Allegheny County and Western Pennsylvania, the second-most populous city in Pennsylv ...
, Chicago,
Pueblo In the Southwestern United States, Pueblo (capitalized) refers to the Native tribes of Puebloans having fixed-location communities with permanent buildings which also are called pueblos (lowercased). The Spanish explorers of northern New Spain ...
,
Butte __NOTOC__ In geomorphology, a butte () is an isolated hill with steep, often vertical sides and a small, relatively flat top; buttes are smaller landforms than mesas, plateaus, and tablelands. The word ''butte'' comes from a French word me ...
, northern
Minnesota Minnesota () is a state in the upper midwestern region of the United States. It is the 12th largest U.S. state in area and the 22nd most populous, with over 5.75 million residents. Minnesota is home to western prairies, now given over ...
, and the
Salt Lake Valley Salt Lake Valley is a valley in Salt Lake County in the north-central portion of the U.S. state of Utah. It contains Salt Lake City and many of its suburbs, notably Murray, Sandy, South Jordan, West Jordan, and West Valley City; its tot ...
. The men were important as workers in the mining industry, because of some of the skills they brought from Slovenia. Despite this emigration, the population of Slovenia increased significantly. Literacy was exceptionally high, at 80–90%. The 19th century also saw a revival of culture in Slovene, accompanied by a Romantic nationalist quest for cultural and political autonomy. The idea of a United Slovenia, first advanced during the
revolutions of 1848 The Revolutions of 1848, known in some countries as the Springtime of the Peoples or the Springtime of Nations, were a series of political upheavals throughout Europe starting in 1848. It remains the most widespread revolutionary wave in Europ ...
, became the common platform of most Slovenian parties and political movements in Austria-Hungary. During the same period,
Yugoslavism Yugoslavism, Yugoslavdom, or Yugoslav nationalism is an ideology supporting the notion that the South Slavs, namely the Bosniaks, Croats, Macedonians, Montenegrins, Serbs and Slovenes, but also Bulgarians, belong to a single Yugoslav natio ...
, an ideology stressing the unity of all South Slavic peoples, spread as a reaction to Pan-German nationalism and
Italian irredentism Italian irredentism ( it, irredentismo italiano) was a nationalist movement during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries in Italy with irredentist goals which promoted the unification of geographic areas in which indigenous peoples ...
.


World War I

World War I World War I (28 July 1914 11 November 1918), often abbreviated as WWI, was List of wars and anthropogenic disasters by death toll, one of the deadliest global conflicts in history. Belligerents included much of Europe, the Russian Empire, ...
brought heavy casualties to Slovenes, particularly the twelve Battles of the Isonzo, which took place in present-day Slovenia's western border area with Italy. Hundreds of thousands of Slovene conscripts were drafted into the
Austro-Hungarian Army The Austro-Hungarian Army (, literally "Ground Forces of the Austro-Hungarians"; , literally "Imperial and Royal Army") was the ground force of the Austro-Hungarian Dual Monarchy from 1867 to 1918. It was composed of three parts: the joint arm ...
, and over 30,000 of them died. Hundreds of thousands of Slovenes from Princely County of Gorizia and Gradisca were resettled in refugee camps in Italy and Austria. While the refugees in Austria received decent treatment, the Slovene refugees in Italian camps were treated as state enemies, and several thousand died of malnutrition and diseases between 1915 and 1918. Entire areas of the
Slovene Littoral The Slovene Littoral ( sl, Primorska, ; it, Litorale; german: Küstenland) is one of the five traditional regions of Slovenia. Its name recalls the former Austrian Littoral (''Avstrijsko Primorje''), the Habsburg possessions on the upper Adri ...
were destroyed. The Treaty of Rapallo of 1920 left approximately 327,000 out of the total population of 1.3 million Slovenes in Italy.Lipušček, U. (2012) ''Sacro egoismo: Slovenci v krempljih tajnega londonskega pakta 1915'', Cankarjeva založba, Ljubljana. Cresciani, Gianfranco (2004
Clash of civilisations
, Italian Historical Society Journal, Vol. 12, No. 2, p. 4
After the fascists took power in Italy, they were subjected to a policy of violent Fascist Italianization. This caused the mass emigration of Slovenes, especially the middle class, from the Slovene Littoral and
Trieste Trieste ( , ; sl, Trst ; german: Triest ) is a city and seaport in northeastern Italy. It is the capital city, and largest city, of the autonomous region of Friuli Venezia Giulia, one of two autonomous regions which are not subdivided into pr ...
to
Yugoslavia Yugoslavia (; sh-Latn-Cyrl, separator=" / ", Jugoslavija, Југославија ; sl, Jugoslavija ; mk, Југославија ;; rup, Iugoslavia; hu, Jugoszlávia; rue, label= Pannonian Rusyn, Югославия, translit=Juhoslavij ...
and South America. Those who remained organized several connected networks of both passive and armed resistance. The best known was the militant anti-fascist organization TIGR, formed in 1927 to fight Fascist oppression of the Slovene and Croat populations in the Julian March.Mira Cencič, ''TIGR'' (Ljubljana: Mladinska knjiga, 1997)Tatjana Rejec, ''Pričevanja o TIGR-u'' (Ljubljana: Slovene Society, 1995)


Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes (later the Kingdom of Yugoslavia)

The Slovene People's Party launched a movement for self-determination, demanding the creation of a semi-independent South Slavic state under
Habsburg The House of Habsburg (), alternatively spelled Hapsburg in Englishgerman: Haus Habsburg, ; es, Casa de Habsburgo; hu, Habsburg család, it, Casa di Asburgo, nl, Huis van Habsburg, pl, dom Habsburgów, pt, Casa de Habsburgo, la, Domus Hab ...
rule. The proposal was picked up by most Slovene parties, and a mass mobilization of Slovene civil society, known as the Declaration Movement, followed. This demand was rejected by the Austrian political elites; but following the dissolution of the Austro-Hungarian Empire in the aftermath of the
First World War World War I (28 July 1914 11 November 1918), often abbreviated as WWI, was one of the deadliest global conflicts in history. Belligerents included much of Europe, the Russian Empire, the United States, and the Ottoman Empire, with fighti ...
, the National Council of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs took power in
Zagreb Zagreb ( , , , ) is the capital (political), capital and List of cities and towns in Croatia#List of cities and towns, largest city of Croatia. It is in the Northern Croatia, northwest of the country, along the Sava river, at the southern slop ...
on 6 October 1918. On 29 October, independence was declared by a national gathering in Ljubljana, and by the Croatian parliament, declaring the establishment of the new
State of Slovenes, Croats, and Serbs The State of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs ( sh, Država Slovenaca, Hrvata i Srba / ; sl, Država Slovencev, Hrvatov in Srbov) was a political entity that was constituted in October 1918, at the end of World War I, by Slovenes, Croats and Serbs ( ...
. On 1 December 1918, the State of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs merged with
Serbia Serbia (, ; Serbian language, Serbian: , , ), officially the Republic of Serbia (Serbian language, Serbian: , , ), is a landlocked country in Southeast Europe, Southeastern and Central Europe, situated at the crossroads of the Pannonian Bas ...
, becoming part of the new Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes; in 1929 it was renamed the
Kingdom of Yugoslavia The Kingdom of Yugoslavia ( sh-Latn-Cyrl, separator=" / ", Kraljevina Jugoslavija, Краљевина Југославија; sl, Kraljevina Jugoslavija) was a state in Southeast and Central Europe that existed from 1918 until 1941. From 191 ...
. The main territory of Slovenia, being the most industrialized and westernized compared to other less developed parts of Yugoslavia, became the main centre of industrial production: Compared to Serbia, for example, Slovenian industrial production was four times greater; and it was 22 times greater than in
North Macedonia North Macedonia, ; sq, Maqedonia e Veriut, (Macedonia before February 2019), officially the Republic of North Macedonia,, is a country in Southeast Europe. It gained independence in 1991 as one of the successor states of Yugoslavia. I ...
. The interwar period brought further industrialization in Slovenia, with rapid economic growth in the 1920s, followed by a relatively successful economic adjustment to the 1929 economic crisis and
Great Depression The Great Depression (19291939) was an economic shock that impacted most countries across the world. It was a period of economic depression that became evident after a major fall in stock prices in the United States. The economic contagion ...
. Following a
plebiscite A referendum (plural: referendums or less commonly referenda) is a direct vote by the electorate on a proposal, law, or political issue. This is in contrast to an issue being voted on by a representative. This may result in the adoption of ...
in October 1920, the Slovene-speaking southern
Carinthia Carinthia (german: Kärnten ; sl, Koroška ) is the southernmost Austrian state, in the Eastern Alps, and is noted for its mountains and lakes. The main language is German. Its regional dialects belong to the Southern Bavarian group. Carin ...
was ceded to
Austria Austria, , bar, Östareich officially the Republic of Austria, is a country in the southern part of Central Europe, lying in the Eastern Alps. It is a federation of nine states, one of which is the capital, Vienna, the most populous ...
. With the
Treaty of Trianon The Treaty of Trianon (french: Traité de Trianon, hu, Trianoni békeszerződés, it, Trattato del Trianon) was prepared at the Paris Peace Conference and was signed in the Grand Trianon château in Versailles on 4 June 1920. It forma ...
, on the other hand, the Kingdom of Yugoslavia was awarded the Slovene-inhabited
Prekmurje Prekmurje (; dialectically: ''Prèkmürsko'' or ''Prèkmüre''; hu, Muravidék) is a geographically, linguistically, culturally and ethnically defined region of Slovenia, settled by Slovenes and a Hungarian minority, lying between the Mur R ...
region, formerly part of Austria-Hungary. Slovenes living in territories that fell under the rule of the neighboring states—Italy, Austria, and Hungary—were subjected to assimilation.


World War II

Slovenia was the only present-day European nation that was trisected and completely annexed into both
Nazi Germany Nazi Germany (lit. "National Socialist State"), ' (lit. "Nazi State") for short; also ' (lit. "National Socialist Germany") (officially known as the German Reich from 1933 until 1943, and the Greater German Reich from 1943 to 1945) was ...
and Fascist
Italy Italy ( it, Italia ), officially the Italian Republic, ) or the Republic of Italy, is a country in Southern Europe. It is located in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, and its territory largely coincides with the Italy (geographical region) ...
during World War II.Gregor Joseph Kranjc (2013). To Walk with the Devil, University of Toronto Press, Scholarly Publishing Division, p. introduction 5 In addition, the
Prekmurje Prekmurje (; dialectically: ''Prèkmürsko'' or ''Prèkmüre''; hu, Muravidék) is a geographically, linguistically, culturally and ethnically defined region of Slovenia, settled by Slovenes and a Hungarian minority, lying between the Mur R ...
region in the east was annexed to Hungary, and some villages in the
Lower Sava Valley The Lower Sava Valley ( sl, Posavje, also ''Spodnje Posavje'' and ''Posavska regija''Ferenc, Tone. 1995. "Posavje". ''Enciklopedija Slovenije'' vol 9. Ljubljana: Mladinska knjiga, pp. 155–156.) is a region in southeastern Slovenia on the border ...
were incorporated in the newly created Nazi puppet
Independent State of Croatia The Independent State of Croatia ( sh, Nezavisna Država Hrvatska, NDH; german: Unabhängiger Staat Kroatien; it, Stato indipendente di Croazia) was a World War II-era puppet state of Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy (1922–1943), Fascist It ...
(NDH). Axis forces invaded Yugoslavia in April 1941 and defeated the country in a few weeks. The southern part, including
Ljubljana Ljubljana (also known by other Ljubljana#Name, historical names) is the Capital city, capital and largest city of Slovenia. It is the country's cultural, educational, economic, political and administrative center. During antiquity, a Roman city ...
, was annexed to Italy, while the Nazis took over the northern and eastern parts of the country. The Nazis had a plan of
ethnic cleansing Ethnic cleansing is the systematic forced removal of ethnic, racial, and religious groups from a given area, with the intent of making a region ethnically homogeneous. Along with direct removal, extermination, deportation or population transfe ...
of these areas,Haar, I., Fahlbusch, M. (2006)
German Scholars and Ethnic Cleansing, 1919–1945
Berghahn Books, , p. 115
and they resettled or expelled the local Slovene civilian population to the puppet states of Nedić's Serbia (7,500) and NDH (10,000). In addition, some 46,000 Slovenes were expelled to Germany, including children who were separated from their parents and allocated to German families.Lukšič-Hacin, M., Mlekuž J. (2009)
Go Girls!: When Slovenian Women Left Home
Založba ZRC SAZU, , p. 55
At the same time, the ethnic Germans in the
Gottschee Gottschee (, sl, Kočevsko) refers to a former German-speaking region in Carniola, a crownland of the Habsburg Empire, part of the historical and traditional region of Lower Carniola, now in Slovenia. The region has been a county, duchy, distri ...
enclave in the Italian annexation zone were resettled to the Nazi-controlled areas cleansed of their Slovene population.Lumans, V.O. (1993
Himmler's Auxiliaries: The Volksdeutsche Mittelstelle and the German National Minorities of Europe, 1933–1945
Univ of North Carolina Press, , p. 175
Around 30,000 to 40,000 Slovene men were drafted to the
German Army The German Army (, "army") is the land component of the armed forces of Germany. The present-day German Army was founded in 1955 as part of the newly formed West German ''Bundeswehr'' together with the ''Marine'' (German Navy) and the ''Luftwaf ...
and sent to the Eastern front. Slovene was banned from education, and its use in public life was limited to the absolute minimum. In south-central Slovenia, annexed by Fascist Italy and renamed the
Province of Ljubljana The Province of Ljubljana ( it, Provincia di Lubiana, sl, Ljubljanska pokrajina, german: Provinz Laibach) was the central-southern area of Slovenia. In 1941, it was annexed by Fascist Italy, and after 1943 occupied by Nazi Germany. Created on May ...
, the Slovenian National Liberation Front was organized in April 1941. Led by the Communist Party, it formed the Slovene Partisan units as part of the
Yugoslav Partisans The Yugoslav Partisans,Serbo-Croatian, Macedonian language, Macedonian, Slovene language, Slovene: , or the National Liberation Army, sh-Latn-Cyrl, Narodnooslobodilačka vojska (NOV), Народноослободилачка војска (НО ...
led by the Communist leader
Josip Broz Tito Josip Broz ( sh-Cyrl, Јосип Броз, ; 7 May 1892 – 4 May 1980), commonly known as Tito (; sh-Cyrl, Тито, links=no, ), was a Yugoslav Communism, communist revolutionary and statesman, serving in various positions from 1943 until ...
. Jeffreys-Jones, R. (2013)
In Spies We Trust: The Story of Western Intelligence
Oxford University Press,
Adams, Simon (2005)
The Balkans
Black Rabbit Books,
After the resistance started in summer 1941, Italian violence against the Slovene civilian population escalated, as well. The Italian authorities deported some 25,000 people to the
concentration camps Internment is the imprisonment of people, commonly in large groups, without charges or intent to file charges. The term is especially used for the confinement "of enemy citizens in wartime or of terrorism suspects". Thus, while it can simp ...
, which equaled 7.5% of the population of their occupation zone. The most infamous ones were
Rab Rab âːb( dlm, Arba, la, Arba, it, Arbe, german: Arbey) is an island in the northern Dalmatia region in Croatia, located just off the northern Croatian coast in the Adriatic Sea. The island is long, has an area of and 9,328 inhabitants (2 ...
and Gonars. To counter the Communist-led insurgence, the Italians sponsored local anti-guerrilla units, formed mostly by the local conservative Catholic Slovene population that resented the revolutionary violence of the partisans. After the Italian armistice of September 1943, the Germans took over both the Province of Ljubljana and the Slovenian Littoral, incorporating them into what was known as the Operation Zone of Adriatic Coastal Region. They united the Slovene anti-Communist counter-insurgence into the Slovene Home Guard and appointed a puppet regime in the Province of Ljubljana. The anti-Nazi resistance however expanded, creating its own administrative structures as the basis for Slovene statehood within a new, federal and socialist Yugoslavia. In 1945,
Yugoslavia Yugoslavia (; sh-Latn-Cyrl, separator=" / ", Jugoslavija, Југославија ; sl, Jugoslavija ; mk, Југославија ;; rup, Iugoslavia; hu, Jugoszlávia; rue, label= Pannonian Rusyn, Югославия, translit=Juhoslavij ...
was liberated by the partisan resistance and soon became a socialist federation known as the People's Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. The first Slovenian republic, named Federal Slovenia, was a constituent republic of the Yugoslavian federation, led by its own pro-Communist leadership. Approximately 8% of the entire Slovene population died during
World War II World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a world war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. It involved the vast majority of the world's countries—including all of the great powers—forming two opposing ...
. The small Jewish community, mostly settled in the
Prekmurje Prekmurje (; dialectically: ''Prèkmürsko'' or ''Prèkmüre''; hu, Muravidék) is a geographically, linguistically, culturally and ethnically defined region of Slovenia, settled by Slovenes and a Hungarian minority, lying between the Mur R ...
region, perished in 1944 in the holocaust of Hungarian Jews. The German speaking minority, amounting to 2.5% of the Slovenian population prior to
WWII World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a world war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. It involved the vast majority of the world's countries—including all of the great powers—forming two opposing ...
, was either expelled or killed in the aftermath of the war. Hundreds of
Istrian Italians Istrian Italians are an ethnic group from the Adriatic region of Istria in modern northwestern Croatia and southwestern Slovenia. Istrian Italians descend from the original Latinized population of Roman Histria, from the Venetian-speaking set ...
and Slovenes that opposed communism were killed in the foibe massacres, and more than 25,000 fled or were expelled from Slovenian Istria in the aftermath of the war. Around 130 000 persons, mostly political and military opponents, were executed after the end of the Second World War in May and June 1945.


Socialist period

During the re-establishment of Yugoslavia in World War II, the first Slovenian republic, Federal Slovenia, was created and it became part of Federal Yugoslavia. It was a
socialist state A socialist state, socialist republic, or socialist country, sometimes referred to as a workers' state or workers' republic, is a sovereign state constitutionally dedicated to the establishment of socialism. The term ''communist state'' is ofte ...
, but because of the
Tito–Stalin split The Tito–Stalin split or the Yugoslav–Soviet split was the culmination of a conflict between the political leaderships of Yugoslavia and the Soviet Union, under Josip Broz Tito and Joseph Stalin, respectively, in the years following World ...
in 1948, economic and personal freedoms were much broader than in the
Eastern Bloc The Eastern Bloc, also known as the Communist Bloc and the Soviet Bloc, was the group of socialist states of Central and Eastern Europe, East Asia, Southeast Asia, Africa, and Latin America under the influence of the Soviet Union that existed ...
countries. In 1947, the
Slovene Littoral The Slovene Littoral ( sl, Primorska, ; it, Litorale; german: Küstenland) is one of the five traditional regions of Slovenia. Its name recalls the former Austrian Littoral (''Avstrijsko Primorje''), the Habsburg possessions on the upper Adri ...
and the western half of
Inner Carniola Inner Carniola ( sl, Notranjska; german: Innerkrain) is a traditional region of Slovenia, the southwestern part of the larger Carniola region. It comprises the Hrušica karst plateau up to Postojna Gate, bordering the Slovenian Littoral (the ...
, which had been annexed by Italy after World War One, were annexed to Slovenia. After the failure of forced collectivisation that was attempted from 1949 to 1953, a policy of gradual economic liberalisation, known as workers self-management, was introduced under the advice and supervision of the Slovene Marxist theoretician and Communist leader Edvard Kardelj, the main ideologue of the Titoist path to socialism. Suspected opponents of this policy both from within and outside the Communist party were persecuted and thousands were sent to Goli otok. The late 1950s saw a policy of liberalization in the cultural sphere as well, and unlimited border crossing into western countries was allowed, both for Yugoslav citizens and for foreigners. In 1956,
Josip Broz Tito Josip Broz ( sh-Cyrl, Јосип Броз, ; 7 May 1892 – 4 May 1980), commonly known as Tito (; sh-Cyrl, Тито, links=no, ), was a Yugoslav Communism, communist revolutionary and statesman, serving in various positions from 1943 until ...
, together with other leaders, founded the
Non-Aligned Movement The Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) is a forum of 120 countries that are not formally aligned with or against any major power bloc. After the United Nations, it is the largest grouping of states worldwide. The movement originated in the aftermath ...
. Particularly in the 1950s, Slovenia's economy developed rapidly and was strongly industrialized. With further economic decentralization of Yugoslavia in 1965–66, Slovenia's domestic product was 2.5 times the average of Yugoslav republics. While being a Communist country, after the Tito–Stalin split Yugoslavia initiated a period of military neutrality and non-alignment. JAT Yugoslav Airlines was the flag carrier and during its existence it grew to become one of the leading airlines in Europe both by fleet and destinations, its fleet included most of the Western-built aircraft, and destinations included five continents. By the 1970s more airlines were created including Slovenian Adria Airways mostly focused in the growing tourist industry. Until the 1980s,
Slovenia Slovenia ( ; sl, Slovenija ), officially the Republic of Slovenia (Slovene: , abbr.: ''RS''), is a country in Central Europe. It is bordered by Italy to the west, Austria to the north, Hungary to the northeast, Croatia to the southeast, an ...
enjoyed relatively broad autonomy within the federation. It was the most liberal communist state in Europe, the passport of Yugoslavia Federation allowed Yugoslavians to travel to most world countries of any socialist country during the Cold War. Many people worked in western countries, which reduced unemployment in their home country. Opposition to the regime was mostly limited to intellectual and literary circles and became especially vocal after Tito's death in 1980 when the economic and political situation in Yugoslavia became very strained. Political disputes around economic measures were echoed in the public sentiment, as many Slovenians felt they were being economically exploited, having to sustain an expensive and inefficient federal administration.


Slovenian Spring, democracy and independence

In 1987 a group of intellectuals demanded Slovene independence in the 57th edition of the magazine '' Nova revija''. Demands for democratisation and more Slovenian independence were sparked off. A mass democratic movement, coordinated by the Committee for the Defence of Human Rights, pushed the Communists in the direction of democratic reforms. In September 1989, numerous
constitutional amendment A constitutional amendment is a modification of the constitution of a polity, organization or other type of entity. Amendments are often interwoven into the relevant sections of an existing constitution, directly altering the text. Conversely, t ...
s were passed to introduce parliamentary democracy to Slovenia. On 7 March 1990, the Slovenian Assembly changed the official name of the state to the "Republic of Slovenia". In April 1990, the first democratic election in Slovenia took place, and the united opposition movement DEMOS led by
Jože Pučnik Jože Pučnik (9 March 1932 – 11 January 2003) was a Slovenian public intellectual, sociologist and politician. During the communist regime of Josip Broz Tito, Pučnik was one of the most outspoken Slovenian critics of dictatorship and lack ...
emerged victorious. The initial revolutionary events in Slovenia pre-dated the
Revolutions of 1989 The Revolutions of 1989, also known as the Fall of Communism, was a revolutionary wave that resulted in the end of most communist states in the world. Sometimes this revolutionary wave is also called the Fall of Nations or the Autumn of Nati ...
in Eastern Europe by almost a year, but went largely unnoticed by international observers. On 23 December 1990, more than 88% of the electorate voted for a sovereign and independent Slovenia. On 25 June 1991, Slovenia became independent through the passage of appropriate legal documents. On 27 June in the early morning, the
Yugoslav People's Army The Yugoslav People's Army (abbreviated as JNA/; Macedonian and sr-Cyrl-Latn, Југословенска народна армија, Jugoslovenska narodna armija; Croatian and bs, Jugoslavenska narodna armija; sl, Jugoslovanska ljudska a ...
dispatched its forces to prevent further measures for the establishment of a new country, which led to the
Ten-Day War The Ten-Day War ( sl, desetdnevna vojna), or the Slovenian War of Independence (), was a brief armed conflict that followed Slovenia's declaration of independence from Yugoslavia on 25 June 1991. It was fought between the separatists of the ...
. On 7 July, the Brijuni Agreement was signed, implementing a truce and a three-month halt of the enforcement of Slovenia's independence. At the end of the month, the last soldiers of the Yugoslav Army left Slovenia. In December 1991, a new
constitution A constitution is the aggregate of fundamental principles or established precedents that constitute the legal basis of a polity, organisation or other type of entity and commonly determine how that entity is to be governed. When these prin ...
was adopted, followed in 1992 by the laws on denationalisation and privatization. The members of the
European Union The European Union (EU) is a supranational political and economic union of member states that are located primarily in Europe. The union has a total area of and an estimated total population of about 447million. The EU has often been ...
recognised Slovenia as an independent state on 15 January 1992, and the United Nations accepted it as a member on 22 May 1992. Slovenia joined the European Union on 1 May 2004. Slovenia has one Commissioner in the
European Commission The European Commission (EC) is the executive of the European Union (EU). It operates as a cabinet government, with 27 members of the Commission (informally known as "Commissioners") headed by a President. It includes an administrative body ...
, and seven Slovene parliamentarians were elected to the
European Parliament The European Parliament (EP) is one of the legislative bodies of the European Union and one of its seven institutions. Together with the Council of the European Union (known as the Council and informally as the Council of Ministers), it adopt ...
at elections on 13 June 2004. In 2004 Slovenia also joined
NATO The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO, ; french: Organisation du traité de l'Atlantique nord, ), also called the North Atlantic Alliance, is an intergovernmental military alliance between 30 member states – 28 European and two Nor ...
. Slovenia subsequently succeeded in meeting the Maastricht criteria and joined the
Eurozone The euro area, commonly called eurozone (EZ), is a currency union of 19 member states of the European Union (EU) that have adopted the euro ( €) as their primary currency and sole legal tender, and have thus fully implemented EMU polici ...
(the first transition country to do so) on 1 January 2007. It was the first post-Communist country to hold the Presidency of the Council of the European Union, for the first six months of 2008. On 21 July 2010, it became a member of the OECD. The disillusionment with domestic socio-economic elites at municipal and national levels was expressed at the 2012–2013 Slovenian protests on a wider scale than in the smaller 15 October 2011 protests. In relation to the leading politicians' response to allegations made by the official Commission for the Prevention of Corruption of the Republic of Slovenia, legal experts expressed the need for changes in the system that would limit political
arbitrariness Arbitrariness is the quality of being "determined by chance, whim, or impulse, and not by necessity, reason, or principle". It is also used to refer to a choice made without any specific criterion or restraint. Arbitrary decisions are not necess ...
.


Geography

Slovenia is situated in
Central Central is an adjective usually referring to being in the center of some place or (mathematical) object. Central may also refer to: Directions and generalised locations * Central Africa, a region in the centre of Africa continent, also known as ...
Europe touching the Alps and bordering the Mediterranean Sea. At the regional conference in Prague in 1994, the International Geographical Union ranked Slovenia among the nine Central European countries, including Germany, Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Switzerland, Liechtenstein and Austria. It lies between latitudes 45° and 47° N, and longitudes 13° and 17° E. The 15th meridian east almost corresponds to the middle line of the country in the direction west–east. The
Geometric Centre of the Republic of Slovenia Geometry (; ) is, with arithmetic, one of the oldest branches of mathematics. It is concerned with properties of space such as the distance, shape, size, and relative position of figures. A mathematician who works in the field of geometry is ca ...
is located at coordinates 46°07'11.8" N and 14°48'55.2" E. It lies in Slivna in the Municipality of Litija. Slovenia's highest peak is
Triglav Triglav (; german: Terglau; it, Tricorno), with an elevation of , is the highest mountain in Slovenia and the highest peak of the Julian Alps. The mountain is the pre-eminent symbol of the Slovene nation. It is the centrepiece of Triglav Nat ...
(); the country's average height
above sea level Height above mean sea level is a measure of the vertical distance (height, elevation or altitude) of a location in reference to a historic mean sea level taken as a vertical datum. In geodesy, it is formalized as '' orthometric heights''. The co ...
is . Four major European geographic regions meet in Slovenia: the
Alps The Alps () ; german: Alpen ; it, Alpi ; rm, Alps ; sl, Alpe . are the highest and most extensive mountain range system that lies entirely in Europe, stretching approximately across seven Alpine countries (from west to east): France, Sw ...
, the Dinarides, the
Pannonian Plain The Pannonian Basin, or Carpathian Basin, is a large Sedimentary basin, basin situated in south-east Central Europe. The Geomorphology, geomorphological term Pannonian Plain is more widely used for roughly the same region though with a somewh ...
, and the Mediterranean Sea. Although on the shore of the
Adriatic Sea The Adriatic Sea () is a body of water separating the Italian Peninsula from the Balkan Peninsula. The Adriatic is the northernmost arm of the Mediterranean Sea, extending from the Strait of Otranto (where it connects to the Ionian Sea) to t ...
near the Mediterranean Sea, most of Slovenia is in the
Black Sea The Black Sea is a marginal mediterranean sea of the Atlantic Ocean lying between Europe and Asia, east of the Balkans, south of the East European Plain, west of the Caucasus, and north of Anatolia. It is bounded by Bulgaria, Georgia, ...
drainage basin A drainage basin is an area of land where all flowing surface water converges to a single point, such as a river mouth, or flows into another body of water, such as a lake or ocean. A basin is separated from adjacent basins by a perimeter, th ...
. The Alps—including the
Julian Alps The Julian Alps ( sl, Julijske Alpe, it, Alpi Giulie, , ) are a mountain range of the Southern Limestone Alps that stretch from northeastern Italy to Slovenia, where they rise to 2,864 m at Mount Triglav, the highest peak in Slovenia. A large p ...
, the Kamnik-Savinja Alps and the Karawank chain, as well as the
Pohorje Pohorje (), also known as the Pohorje Massif or the Pohorje Mountains (german: Bachergebirge, ''Bacherngebirge'' or often simply ''Bachern''), is a mostly wooded, medium-high mountain range south of the Drava River in northeastern Slovenia. Acco ...
massif—dominate Northern Slovenia along its long border with
Austria Austria, , bar, Östareich officially the Republic of Austria, is a country in the southern part of Central Europe, lying in the Eastern Alps. It is a federation of nine states, one of which is the capital, Vienna, the most populous ...
. Slovenia's Adriatic coastline stretches approximately from Italy to Croatia. The term "
Karst topography Karst is a topography formed from the dissolution of soluble rocks such as limestone, dolomite, and gypsum. It is characterized by underground drainage systems with sinkholes and caves. It has also been documented for more weathering-resistant r ...
" refers to that of southwestern Slovenia's
Karst Plateau The Karst Plateau or the Karst region ( sl, Kras, it, Carso), also locally called Karst, is a karst plateau region extending across the border of southwestern Slovenia and northeastern Italy. It lies between the Vipava Valley, the low hills su ...
, a
limestone Limestone ( calcium carbonate ) is a type of carbonate sedimentary rock which is the main source of the material lime. It is composed mostly of the minerals calcite and aragonite, which are different crystal forms of . Limestone forms when th ...
region of underground rivers, gorges, and caves, between Ljubljana and the Mediterranean Sea. On the
Pannonian plain The Pannonian Basin, or Carpathian Basin, is a large Sedimentary basin, basin situated in south-east Central Europe. The Geomorphology, geomorphological term Pannonian Plain is more widely used for roughly the same region though with a somewh ...
to the East and Northeast, toward the Croatian and Hungarian borders, the landscape is essentially flat. However, most of Slovenia is hilly or mountainous, with around 90% of its land surface or more
above sea level Height above mean sea level is a measure of the vertical distance (height, elevation or altitude) of a location in reference to a historic mean sea level taken as a vertical datum. In geodesy, it is formalized as '' orthometric heights''. The co ...
. More than half of Slovenia, which is , is forested; ranking it third in Europe, by percentage of area forested, after
Finland Finland ( fi, Suomi ; sv, Finland ), officially the Republic of Finland (; ), is a Nordic country in Northern Europe. It shares land borders with Sweden to the northwest, Norway to the north, and Russia to the east, with the Gulf of Both ...
and Sweden. The areas are covered mostly by
beech Beech (''Fagus'') is a genus of deciduous trees in the family Fagaceae, native to temperate Europe, Asia, and North America. Recent classifications recognize 10 to 13 species in two distinct subgenera, ''Engleriana'' and ''Fagus''. The ''Engle ...
, fir-beech and beech- oak forests and have a relatively high production capacity. Remnants of primeval forests are still to be found, the largest in the Kočevje area. Grassland covers and fields and gardens (). There are of orchards and of vineyards.


Geology

Slovenia is in a rather active seismic zone because of its position on the small Adriatic Plate, which is squeezed between the
Eurasian Plate The Eurasian Plate is a tectonic plate that includes most of the continent of Eurasia (a landmass consisting of the traditional continents of Europe and Asia), with the notable exceptions of the Indian subcontinent, the Arabian subcontinent and ...
to the north and the
African Plate The African Plate is a major tectonic plate that includes much of the continent of Africa (except for its easternmost part) and the adjacent oceanic crust to the west and south. It is bounded by the North American Plate and South American Pla ...
to the south and rotates counter-clockwise. Thus the country is at the junction of three important geotectonic units: the Alps to the north, the Dinaric Alps to the south and the Pannonian Basin to the east. Scientists have been able to identify 60 destructive earthquakes in the past. Additionally, a network of seismic stations is active throughout the country. Many parts of Slovenia have a
carbonate A carbonate is a salt of carbonic acid (H2CO3), characterized by the presence of the carbonate ion, a polyatomic ion with the formula . The word ''carbonate'' may also refer to a carbonate ester, an organic compound containing the carbonate ...
bedrock In geology, bedrock is solid rock that lies under loose material (regolith) within the crust of Earth or another terrestrial planet. Definition Bedrock is the solid rock that underlies looser surface material. An exposed portion of bed ...
and extensive
cave system A cave or cavern is a natural void in the ground, specifically a space large enough for a human to enter. Caves often form by the weathering of rock and often extend deep underground. The word ''cave'' can refer to smaller openings such as sea ...
s have developed.


Natural regions

The first regionalisations of Slovenia were made by geographers Anton Melik (1935–1936) and Svetozar Ilešič (1968). The newer regionalisation by Ivan Gams divided Slovenia in the following macroregions: * the
Alps The Alps () ; german: Alpen ; it, Alpi ; rm, Alps ; sl, Alpe . are the highest and most extensive mountain range system that lies entirely in Europe, stretching approximately across seven Alpine countries (from west to east): France, Sw ...
(''Alpe'') * the subalpine landscapes (''predalpski svet'') * the
Slovene Littoral The Slovene Littoral ( sl, Primorska, ; it, Litorale; german: Küstenland) is one of the five traditional regions of Slovenia. Its name recalls the former Austrian Littoral (''Avstrijsko Primorje''), the Habsburg possessions on the upper Adri ...
or Submediterranean Slovenia (''Primorje'' or ''submediteranska Slovenija'') * the Dinaric plateaus of the continental Slovenia (''dinarske planote celinske Slovenije'') * Subpannonian Slovenia (''subpanonska Slovenija'') According to a newer natural geographic regionalisation, the country consists of four
macroregion A macroregion is a geopolitical subdivision that encompasses several traditionally or politically defined regions or countries. The meaning may vary, with the common denominator being cultural, economical, historical or social similarity within a ma ...
s. These are the Alpine, the Mediterranean, the Dinaric, and the
Pannonia Pannonia (, ) was a province of the Roman Empire bounded on the north and east by the Danube, coterminous westward with Noricum and upper Italy, and southward with Dalmatia and upper Moesia. Pannonia was located in the territory that is now west ...
n landscapes. Macroregions are defined according to major relief units (the Alps, the Pannonian plain, the Dinaric mountains) and climate types (submediterranean, temperate continental, mountain climate). These are often quite interwoven. Protected areas of Slovenia include national parks, regional parks, and nature parks, the largest of which is
Triglav National Park Triglav National Park (TNP) ( sl, Triglavski narodni park) is the only national park in Slovenia. It was established in its modern form in 1981 and is located in the northwestern part of the country, respectively the southeastern part of the Al ...
. There are 286
Natura 2000 Natura 2000 is a network of nature protection areas in the territory of the European Union. It is made up of Special Areas of Conservation and Special Protection Areas designated under the Habitats Directive and the Birds Directive, respectivel ...
designated protected areas, which include 36% of the country's land area, the largest percentage among European Union states. Additionally, according to
Yale University Yale University is a private research university in New Haven, Connecticut. Established in 1701 as the Collegiate School, it is the third-oldest institution of higher education in the United States and among the most prestigious in the wor ...
's Environmental Performance Index, Slovenia is considered a "strong performer" in environmental protection efforts.


Climate

Slovenia is located in temperate latitudes. The climate is also influenced by the variety of relief, and the influence of the
Alps The Alps () ; german: Alpen ; it, Alpi ; rm, Alps ; sl, Alpe . are the highest and most extensive mountain range system that lies entirely in Europe, stretching approximately across seven Alpine countries (from west to east): France, Sw ...
and the
Adriatic Sea The Adriatic Sea () is a body of water separating the Italian Peninsula from the Balkan Peninsula. The Adriatic is the northernmost arm of the Mediterranean Sea, extending from the Strait of Otranto (where it connects to the Ionian Sea) to t ...
. In the northeast, the
continental climate Continental climates often have a significant annual variation in temperature (warm summers and cold winters). They tend to occur in the middle latitudes (40 to 55 north), within large landmasses where prevailing winds blow overland bringing som ...
type with greatest difference between winter and summer temperatures prevails. In the coastal region, there is sub-
Mediterranean climate A Mediterranean climate (also called a dry summer temperate climate ''Cs'') is a temperate climate sub-type, generally characterized by warm, dry summers and mild, fairly wet winters; these weather conditions are typically experienced in the ...
. The effect of the sea on the temperature rates is also visible up the
Soča The Soča ( in Slovene) or Isonzo ( in Italian; other names fur, Lusinç, german: Sontig, la, Aesontius or ') is a long river that flows through western Slovenia () and northeastern Italy (). An Alpine river in character, its source lies ...
Valley, while a severe
Alpine climate Alpine climate is the typical weather (climate) for elevations above the tree line, where trees fail to grow due to cold. This climate is also referred to as a mountain climate or highland climate. Definition There are multiple definitions of ...
is present in the high mountain regions. There is a strong interaction between these three climatic systems across most of the country.
Precipitation In meteorology, precipitation is any product of the condensation of atmospheric water vapor that falls under gravitational pull from clouds. The main forms of precipitation include drizzle, rain, sleet, snow, ice pellets, graupel and hai ...
, often coming from the Gulf of Genoa, varies across the country as well, with over in some western regions and dropping down to in
Prekmurje Prekmurje (; dialectically: ''Prèkmürsko'' or ''Prèkmüre''; hu, Muravidék) is a geographically, linguistically, culturally and ethnically defined region of Slovenia, settled by Slovenes and a Hungarian minority, lying between the Mur R ...
. Snow is quite frequent in winter and the record snow cover in Ljubljana was recorded in 1952 at . Compared to Western Europe, Slovenia is not very windy, because it lies in the slipstream of the Alps. The average wind speeds are lower than in the plains of the nearby countries. Due to the rugged terrain, local vertical winds with daily periods are present. Besides these, there are three winds of particular regional importance: the bora, the jugo, and the
foehn A Foehn or Föhn (, , ), is a type of dry, relatively warm, downslope wind that occurs in the lee (downwind side) of a mountain range. It is a rain shadow wind that results from the subsequent adiabatic warming of air that has dropped most of ...
. The jugo and the bora are characteristic of the Littoral. Whereas the jugo is humid and warm, the bora is usually cold and gusty. The foehn is typical of the Alpine regions in the north of Slovenia. Generally present in Slovenia are the northeast wind, the southeast wind and the north wind.


Waters

The territory of Slovenia mainly (, i.e. 81%) belongs to the
Black Sea The Black Sea is a marginal mediterranean sea of the Atlantic Ocean lying between Europe and Asia, east of the Balkans, south of the East European Plain, west of the Caucasus, and north of Anatolia. It is bounded by Bulgaria, Georgia, ...
basin, and a smaller part (, i.e. 19%) belongs to the
Adriatic Sea The Adriatic Sea () is a body of water separating the Italian Peninsula from the Balkan Peninsula. The Adriatic is the northernmost arm of the Mediterranean Sea, extending from the Strait of Otranto (where it connects to the Ionian Sea) to t ...
basin. These two parts are divided into smaller units in regard to their central rivers, the Mura River basin, the River basin, the
Sava The Sava (; , ; sr-cyr, Сава, hu, Száva) is a river in Central and Southeast Europe, a right-bank and the longest tributary of the Danube. It flows through Slovenia, Croatia and along its border with Bosnia and Herzegovina, and finally th ...
River basin with Kolpa River basin, and the basin of the Adriatic rivers. In comparison with other
developed countries A developed country (or industrialized country, high-income country, more economically developed country (MEDC), advanced country) is a sovereign state that has a high quality of life, developed economy and advanced technological infrastru ...
, water quality in Slovenia is considered to be among the highest in Europe. One of the reasons is undoubtedly that most of the rivers rise on the mountainous territory of Slovenia. However, this does not mean that Slovenia has no problems with surface water and groundwater quality, especially in areas with
intensive farming Intensive agriculture, also known as intensive farming (as opposed to extensive farming), conventional, or industrial agriculture, is a type of agriculture, both of crop plants and of animals, with higher levels of input and output per unit of ...
.


Biodiversity

Slovenia signed the Rio
Convention on Biological Diversity The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), known informally as the Biodiversity Convention, is a multilateral treaty. The Convention has three main goals: the conservation of biological diversity (or biodiversity); the sustainable use of its ...
on 13 June 1992 and became a party to the convention on 9 July 1996. It subsequently produced a National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan, which was received by the convention on 30 May 2002. Slovenia is distinguished by an exceptionally wide variety of habitats, due to the contact of geological units and biogeographical regions, and due to human influences. The country is home to four terrestrial ecoregions: Dinaric Mountains mixed forests, Pannonian mixed forests,
Alps conifer and mixed forests The Alps conifer and mixed forests is a temperate broadleaf and mixed forests ecoregion in central Europe. It extends along the Alps mountains through portions of France, Italy, Switzerland, Germany, Liechtenstein, Austria, and Slovenia. The ...
, and Illyrian deciduous forests. Around 12.5% of the territory is protected with 35.5% in the
Natura 2000 Natura 2000 is a network of nature protection areas in the territory of the European Union. It is made up of Special Areas of Conservation and Special Protection Areas designated under the Habitats Directive and the Birds Directive, respectivel ...
ecological network. Despite this, because of pollution and environmental degradation, diversity has been in decline. Slovenia had a 2019
Forest Landscape Integrity Index The Forest Landscape Integrity Index (FLII) is an annual global index of forest condition measured by degree of anthropogenic modification. Created by a team of 48 scientists, the FLII, in its measurement of 300m pixels of forest across the globe ...
mean score of 3.78/10, ranking it 140th globally out of 172 countries.


Animals

The
biological diversity Biodiversity or biological diversity is the variety and variability of life on Earth. Biodiversity is a measure of variation at the genetic (''genetic variability''), species ('' species diversity''), and ecosystem (''ecosystem diversity'') l ...
of the country is high, with 1% of the world's organisms on 0.004% of the Earth's surface area. There are 75 mammal species, among them
marmot Marmots are large ground squirrels in the genus ''Marmota'', with 15 species living in Asia, Europe, and North America. These herbivores are active during the summer, when they can often be found in groups, but are not seen during the winter, ...
s, Alpine ibex, and
chamois The chamois (''Rupicapra rupicapra'') or Alpine chamois is a species of goat-antelope native to mountains in Europe, from west to east, including the Alps, the Dinarides, the Tatra and the Carpathian Mountains, the Balkan Mountains, the Ri ...
. There are numerous
deer Deer or true deer are hoofed ruminant mammals forming the family Cervidae. The two main groups of deer are the Cervinae, including the muntjac, the elk (wapiti), the red deer, and the fallow deer; and the Capreolinae, including the rei ...
,
roe deer The roe deer (''Capreolus capreolus''), also known as the roe, western roe deer, or European roe, is a species of deer. The male of the species is sometimes referred to as a roebuck. The roe is a small deer, reddish and grey-brown, and well-adapt ...
,
boar The wild boar (''Sus scrofa''), also known as the wild swine, common wild pig, Eurasian wild pig, or simply wild pig, is a suid native to much of Eurasia and North Africa, and has been introduced to the Americas and Oceania. The species is n ...
, and
hare Hares and jackrabbits are mammals belonging to the genus ''Lepus''. They are herbivores, and live solitarily or in pairs. They nest in slight depressions called forms, and their young are able to fend for themselves shortly after birth. The gen ...
s. The
edible dormouse ''Glis'' is a genus of rodent that contains two extant species, both known as edible dormice or fat dormice: the European edible dormouse ''(Glis glis'') and the Iranian edible dormouse (''Glis persicus''). It also contains a number of fossil sp ...
is often found in the Slovenian beech forests. Trapping these animals is a long tradition and is a part of the Slovenian national identity. Some important carnivores include the
Eurasian lynx The Eurasian lynx (''Lynx lynx'') is a medium-sized wild cat widely distributed from Northern, Central and Eastern Europe to Central Asia and Siberia, the Tibetan Plateau and the Himalayas. It inhabits temperate and boreal forests up to an eleva ...
, European
wild cat Felidae () is the family of mammals in the order Carnivora colloquially referred to as cats, and constitutes a clade. A member of this family is also called a felid (). The term "cat" refers both to felids in general and specifically to the d ...
s, foxes (especially the
red fox The red fox (''Vulpes vulpes'') is the largest of the true foxes and one of the most widely distributed members of the order Carnivora, being present across the entire Northern Hemisphere including most of North America, Europe and Asia, plu ...
), and European jackal. There are
hedgehog A hedgehog is a spiny mammal of the subfamily Erinaceinae, in the eulipotyphlan family Erinaceidae. There are seventeen species of hedgehog in five genera found throughout parts of Europe, Asia, and Africa, and in New Zealand by introduction ...
s,
marten A marten is a weasel-like mammal in the genus ''Martes'' within the subfamily Guloninae, in the family Mustelidae. They have bushy tails and large paws with partially retractile claws. The fur varies from yellowish to dark brown, depending on t ...
s, and snakes such as vipers and
grass snake The grass snake (''Natrix natrix''), sometimes called the ringed snake or water snake, is a Eurasian non- venomous colubrid snake. It is often found near water and feeds almost exclusively on amphibians. Subspecies Many subspecies are recogni ...
s. According to recent estimates, Slovenia has c. 40–60
wolves The wolf (''Canis lupus''; : wolves), also known as the gray wolf or grey wolf, is a large canine native to Eurasia and North America. More than thirty subspecies of ''Canis lupus'' have been recognized, and gray wolves, as popularly ...
and about 450 brown bears. Slovenia is home to an exceptionally diverse number of cave species, with a few tens of
endemic species Endemism is the state of a species being found in a single defined geographic location, such as an island, state, nation, country or other defined zone; organisms that are Indigenous (ecology), indigenous to a place are not endemic to it if the ...
. Among the cave vertebrates, the only known one is the olm, living in Karst, Lower Carniola, and White Carniola. The only regular species of
cetacea Cetacea (; , ) is an infraorder of aquatic mammals that includes whales, dolphins, and porpoises. Key characteristics are their fully aquatic lifestyle, streamlined body shape, often large size and exclusively carnivorous diet. They propel them ...
ns found in the northern Adriatic sea is the
bottlenose dolphin Bottlenose dolphins are aquatic mammals in the genus ''Tursiops.'' They are common, cosmopolitan members of the family Delphinidae, the family of oceanic dolphins. Molecular studies show the genus definitively contains two species: the commo ...
(''Tursiops truncatus''). There are a wide variety of birds, such as the tawny owl, the long-eared owl, the eagle owl,
hawk Hawks are birds of prey of the family Accipitridae. They are widely distributed and are found on all continents except Antarctica. * The subfamily Accipitrinae includes goshawks, sparrowhawks, sharp-shinned hawks and others. This subfamily ...
s, and short-toed eagles. Other birds of prey have been recorded, as well as a growing number of ravens,
crow A crow is a bird of the genus ''Corvus'', or more broadly a synonym for all of ''Corvus''. Crows are generally black in colour. The word "crow" is used as part of the common name of many species. The related term "raven" is not pinned scientifical ...
s and
magpie Magpies are birds of the Corvidae family. Like other members of their family, they are widely considered to be intelligent creatures. The Eurasian magpie, for instance, is thought to rank among the world's most intelligent creatures, and is one ...
s migrating into Ljubljana and Maribor where they thrive. Other birds include
black Black is a color which results from the absence or complete absorption of visible light. It is an achromatic color, without hue, like white and grey. It is often used symbolically or figuratively to represent darkness. Black and white have ...
and
green Green is the color between cyan and yellow on the visible spectrum. It is evoked by light which has a dominant wavelength of roughly 495570 nm. In subtractive color systems, used in painting and color printing, it is created by a combin ...
woodpecker Woodpeckers are part of the bird family Picidae, which also includes the piculets, wrynecks, and sapsuckers. Members of this family are found worldwide, except for Australia, New Guinea, New Zealand, Madagascar, and the extreme polar regions ...
s and the
white stork The white stork (''Ciconia ciconia'') is a large bird in the stork family, Ciconiidae. Its plumage is mainly white, with black on the bird's wings. Adults have long red legs and long pointed red beaks, and measure on average from beak tip to e ...
, which nests mainly in
Prekmurje Prekmurje (; dialectically: ''Prèkmürsko'' or ''Prèkmüre''; hu, Muravidék) is a geographically, linguistically, culturally and ethnically defined region of Slovenia, settled by Slovenes and a Hungarian minority, lying between the Mur R ...
. There are 13 domestic animals native to Slovenia, of eight species (hen, pig, dog, horse, sheep, goat, honey bee, and cattle). Among these are the Karst Shepherd, the Carniolan honeybee, and the Lipizzan horse. They have been preserved ex situ and
in situ ''In situ'' (; often not italicized in English) is a Latin phrase that translates literally to "on site" or "in position." It can mean "locally", "on site", "on the premises", or "in place" to describe where an event takes place and is used in ...
. The marble trout or marmorata (''Salmo marmoratus'') is an indigenous Slovenian fish. Extensive breeding programmes have been introduced to repopulate the marble trout into lakes and streams invaded by non-indigenous species of
trout Trout are species of freshwater fish belonging to the genera ''Oncorhynchus'', ''Salmo'' and ''Salvelinus'', all of the subfamily Salmoninae of the family Salmonidae. The word ''trout'' is also used as part of the name of some non-salmonid ...
. Slovenia is also home to the wels catfish.


Fungi

More than 2,400 fungal species have been recorded from Slovenia and, since that figure does not include lichen-forming fungi, the total number of Slovenian fungi already known is undoubtedly much higher. Many more remain to be discovered.


Plants

Slovenia is the third most-forested country in Europe, with 58.3% of the territory covered by forests. The forests are an important natural resource, and logging is kept to a minimum. In the interior of the country are typical Central European forests, predominantly oak and
beech Beech (''Fagus'') is a genus of deciduous trees in the family Fagaceae, native to temperate Europe, Asia, and North America. Recent classifications recognize 10 to 13 species in two distinct subgenera, ''Engleriana'' and ''Fagus''. The ''Engle ...
. In the mountains,
spruce A spruce is a tree of the genus ''Picea'' (), a genus of about 35 species of coniferous evergreen trees in the family Pinaceae, found in the northern temperate and boreal (taiga) regions of the Earth. ''Picea'' is the sole genus in the subfami ...
, fir, and
pine A pine is any conifer tree or shrub in the genus ''Pinus'' () of the family Pinaceae. ''Pinus'' is the sole genus in the subfamily Pinoideae. The World Flora Online created by the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew and Missouri Botanical Garden ac ...
are more common. Pine trees grow on the
Karst Plateau The Karst Plateau or the Karst region ( sl, Kras, it, Carso), also locally called Karst, is a karst plateau region extending across the border of southwestern Slovenia and northeastern Italy. It lies between the Vipava Valley, the low hills su ...
, although only one-third of the region is covered by pine forest. The lime/linden tree, common in Slovenian forests, is a national symbol. The
tree line The tree line is the edge of the habitat at which trees are capable of growing. It is found at high elevations and high latitudes. Beyond the tree line, trees cannot tolerate the environmental conditions (usually cold temperatures, extreme snowp ...
is at . In the Alps, flowers such as '' Daphne blagayana'', gentians ('' Gentiana clusii'', '' Gentiana froelichi''), ''
Primula auricula ''Primula auricula'', often known as auricula, mountain cowslip or bear's ear (from the shape of its leaves), is a species of flowering plant in the family Primulaceae, that grows on basic rocks in the mountain ranges of central Europe, including ...
'',
edelweiss EDELWEISS (Expérience pour DEtecter Les WIMPs En Site Souterrain) is a dark matter search experiment located at the Modane Underground Laboratory in France. The experiment uses cryogenic detectors, measuring both the phonon and ionization signa ...
(the symbol of Slovene mountaineering), '' Cypripedium calceolus'', '' Fritillaria meleagris'' (snake's head fritillary), and '' Pulsatilla grandis'' are found. Slovenia harbors many plants of ethnobotanically useful groups. Of 59 known species of ethnobotanical importance, some species such as '' Aconitum napellus'', ''
Cannabis sativa ''Cannabis sativa'' is an annual herbaceous flowering plant indigenous to Eastern Asia, but now of cosmopolitan distribution due to widespread cultivation. It has been cultivated throughout recorded history, used as a source of industrial fibe ...
'' and ''
Taxus baccata ''Taxus baccata'' is a species of evergreen tree in the family Taxaceae, native to western, central and southern Europe (including Britain and Ireland), northwest Africa, northern Iran, and southwest Asia.Rushforth, K. (1999). ''Trees of Britain ...
'' are restricted for use as per the Official Gazette of the Republic of Slovenia.


Government and politics

Slovenia is a parliamentary democracy republic with a
multi-party system In political science, a multi-party system is a political system in which multiple political parties across the political spectrum run for national elections, and all have the capacity to gain control of government offices, separately or in coa ...
. The
head of state A head of state (or chief of state) is the public persona who officially embodies a state Foakes, pp. 110–11 " he head of statebeing an embodiment of the State itself or representatitve of its international persona." in its unity and l ...
is the president, who is elected by popular vote and has an important integrative role. The president is elected for five years and at maximum for two consecutive terms. The president has a representative role and is the commander-in-chief of the Slovenian armed forces. The executive and administrative authority in Slovenia is held by the
Government of Slovenia The Government of the Republic of Slovenia ( sl, Vlada Republike Slovenije) exercises executive authority in Slovenia pursuant to the Constitution and the laws of Slovenia. It is also the highest administrative authority in Slovenia. The governmen ...
('), headed by the
Prime Minister A prime minister, premier or chief of cabinet is the head of the cabinet and the leader of the ministers in the executive branch of government, often in a parliamentary or semi-presidential system. Under those systems, a prime minister is n ...
and the council of ministers or cabinet, who are elected by the
National Assembly In politics, a national assembly is either a unicameral legislature, the lower house of a bicameral legislature, or both houses of a bicameral legislature together. In the English language it generally means "an assembly composed of the repre ...
(). The legislative authority is held by the
bicameral Bicameralism is a type of legislature, one divided into two separate assemblies, chambers, or houses, known as a bicameral legislature. Bicameralism is distinguished from unicameralism, in which all members deliberate and vote as a single gro ...
Parliament of Slovenia, characterised by an asymmetric duality. The bulk of power is concentrated in the National Assembly, which consists of ninety members. Of those, 88 are elected by all the citizens in a system of
proportional representation Proportional representation (PR) refers to a type of electoral system under which subgroups of an electorate are reflected proportionately in the elected body. The concept applies mainly to geographical (e.g. states, regions) and political divis ...
, whereas two are elected by the registered members of the autochthonous Hungarian and Italian minorities. Election takes place every four years. The National Council ('), consisting of forty members, appointed to represent social, economic, professional and local interest groups, has a limited advisory and control power. The 1992–2004 period was marked by the rule of the
Liberal Democracy of Slovenia Liberal Democracy of Slovenia ( sl, Liberalna demokracija Slovenije, LDS) is a social-liberal political party in Slovenia. Between 1992 and 2004 it was the largest (and ruling) party in the country. In the 2011 Slovenian parliamentary election, i ...
, which was responsible for gradual transition from the Titoist economy to the capitalist market economy. It later attracted much criticism by neo-liberal economists, who demanded a less gradual approach. The party's president
Janez Drnovšek Janez Drnovšek (; 17 May 1950 – 23 February 2008) was a Slovenian liberalism, liberal politician, President of the Presidency of Yugoslavia (1989–1990), Prime Minister of Slovenia (1992–2002, with a short break in 2000) and President of S ...
, who served as prime minister between 1992 and 2002, was one of the most influential Slovenian politicians of the 1990s, alongside President
Milan Kučan Milan Kučan (; born 14 January 1941) is a Slovene politician who served as the first President of Slovenia from 23 December 1991 until 22 December 2002. Before being president of Slovenia, he was the 13th President of the Presidency of SR Slove ...
(who served between 1990 and 2002). The 2005–2008 period was characterized by over-enthusiasm after joining the EU. During the first term of
Janez Janša Ivan Janša (; born 17 September 1958), baptized and best known as Janez Janša (), is a Slovenian politician who served three times as a prime minister of Slovenia, a position he had held from 2004 to 2008, from 2012 to 2013, and from 2020 to ...
's government, for the first time after independence, the Slovenian banks saw their loan-deposit ratios veering out of control. There was over-borrowing from foreign banks and then over-crediting of customers, including local
business magnate A business magnate, also known as a tycoon, is a person who has achieved immense wealth through the ownership of multiple lines of enterprise. The term characteristically refers to a powerful entrepreneur or investor who controls, through perso ...
s. After the onset of the
financial crisis of 2007–2010 Finance is the study and discipline of money, currency and capital assets. It is related to, but not synonymous with economics, the study of production, distribution, and consumption of money, assets, goods and services (the discipline of ...
and European sovereign-debt crisis, the left-wing coalition that replaced Janša's government in the 2008 elections, had to face the consequences of the 2005–2008 over-borrowing. Attempts to implement reforms that would help economic recovery were met by student protesters, led by a student who later became a member of
Janez Janša Ivan Janša (; born 17 September 1958), baptized and best known as Janez Janša (), is a Slovenian politician who served three times as a prime minister of Slovenia, a position he had held from 2004 to 2008, from 2012 to 2013, and from 2020 to ...
's SDS, and by the trade unions. The proposed reforms were postponed in a referendum. The left-wing government was ousted with a vote of no confidence. Janez Janša attributed the boom of spending and overborrowing to the period of left-wing government; he proposed harsh austerity reforms which he had previously helped postpone. Generally, some economists estimate that both left and right parties contributed to over-loaning and managers' takeovers; the reason behind this was that each bloc tried to establish an economic elite which would support its political forces. In March 2020, Janez Janša became prime minister for third time in the new coalition government of SDS, the Modern Centre Party (SMC), New Slovenia (NSi) and Pensioners' Party (DeSUS). Janša had previously been prime minister from 2004 to 2008 and from 2012 to 2013. Janez Janša was known as a right-wing populist and an outspoken supporter of former US President
Donald Trump Donald John Trump (born June 14, 1946) is an American politician, media personality, and businessman who served as the 45th president of the United States from 2017 to 2021. Trump graduated from the Wharton School of the University of Pe ...
. Janša was also known as an ally of right-wing Prime Minister Viktor Orban of Hungary. In April 2022, liberal opposition, The Freedom Movement, won the parliamentary
election An election is a formal group decision-making process by which a population chooses an individual or multiple individuals to hold public office. Elections have been the usual mechanism by which modern representative democracy has operat ...
. The Freedom Movement won 34.5% of the vote, compared with 23.6% for Janša’s Slovenian Democratic party. On 25 May 2022, Slovenia’s parliament voted to appoint the leader of Freedom Movement, Robert Golob, as the new Prime Minister of Slovenia to succeed Janez Janša.


Judiciary

Judicial powers in Slovenia are executed by judges, who are elected by the National Assembly. Judicial power in Slovenia is implemented by courts with general responsibilities and specialised courts that deal with matters relating to specific legal areas. The State Prosecutor is an independent state authority responsible for prosecuting cases brought against those suspected of committing criminal offences. The Constitutional Court, composed of nine judges elected for nine-year terms, decides on the conformity of laws with the Constitution; all laws and regulations must also conform with the general principles of international law and with ratified international agreements.


Military

The Slovenian Armed Forces provide military defence independently or within an alliance, in accordance with international agreements. Since conscription was abolished in 2003, it is organized as a fully professional
standing army A standing army is a permanent, often professional, army. It is composed of full-time soldiers who may be either career soldiers or conscripts. It differs from army reserves, who are enrolled for the long term, but activated only during wars or ...
. The Commander-in-Chief is the President of the Republic of Slovenia, while operational command is in the domain of the
Chief of the General Staff The Chief of the General Staff (CGS) is a post in many armed forces ( militaries), the head of the military staff. List * Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (United States) * Chief of the General Staff (Abkhazia) * Chief of General Staff ( ...
of the Slovenian Armed Forces. In 2016, military spending was an estimated 0.91% of the country's GDP. Since joining
NATO The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO, ; french: Organisation du traité de l'Atlantique nord, ), also called the North Atlantic Alliance, is an intergovernmental military alliance between 30 member states – 28 European and two Nor ...
, the Slovenian Armed Forces have taken a more active part in supporting international peace. They have participated in peace support operations and humanitarian activities. Among others, Slovenian soldiers are a part of international forces serving in
Bosnia and Herzegovina Bosnia and Herzegovina ( sh, / , ), abbreviated BiH () or B&H, sometimes called Bosnia–Herzegovina and often known informally as Bosnia, is a country at the crossroads of south and southeast Europe, located in the Balkans. Bosnia and H ...
,
Kosovo Kosovo ( sq, Kosova or ; sr-Cyrl, Косово ), officially the Republic of Kosovo ( sq, Republika e Kosovës, links=no; sr, Република Косово, Republika Kosovo, links=no), is a partially recognised state in Southeast Eur ...
, and
Afghanistan Afghanistan, officially the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan,; prs, امارت اسلامی افغانستان is a landlocked country located at the crossroads of Central Asia and South Asia. Referred to as the Heart of Asia, it is bordere ...
.


Administrative divisions and traditional regions


Municipalities

Officially, Slovenia is subdivided into 212 municipalities (twelve of which have the status of urban municipalities). The municipalities are the only bodies of local autonomy in Slovenia. Each municipality is headed by a mayor (''župan''), elected every four years by popular vote, and a municipal council (''občinski svet''). In the majority of municipalities, the municipal council is elected through the system of
proportional representation Proportional representation (PR) refers to a type of electoral system under which subgroups of an electorate are reflected proportionately in the elected body. The concept applies mainly to geographical (e.g. states, regions) and political divis ...
; only a few smaller municipalities use the
plurality voting system Plurality voting refers to electoral systems in which a candidate, or candidates, who poll more than any other counterpart (that is, receive a plurality), are elected. In systems based on single-member districts, it elects just one member per ...
. In the urban municipalities, the municipal councils are called town (or city) councils. Every municipality also has a Head of the Municipal Administration (''načelnik občinske uprave''), appointed by the mayor, who is responsible for the functioning of the local administration.


Administrative districts

There is no official intermediate unit between the municipalities and the Republic of Slovenia. The 62 administrative districts, officially called "Administrative Units" (''upravne enote''), are only subdivisions of the national government administration and are named after their respective bases of government offices. They are headed by a Manager of the Unit (''načelnik upravne enote''), appointed by the Minister of Public Administration.


Traditional regions and identities

Traditional regions were based on the former
Habsburg The House of Habsburg (), alternatively spelled Hapsburg in Englishgerman: Haus Habsburg, ; es, Casa de Habsburgo; hu, Habsburg család, it, Casa di Asburgo, nl, Huis van Habsburg, pl, dom Habsburgów, pt, Casa de Habsburgo, la, Domus Hab ...
crown land Crown land (sometimes spelled crownland), also known as royal domain, is a territorial area belonging to the monarch, who personifies the Crown. It is the equivalent of an entailed estate and passes with the monarchy, being inseparable from it ...
s that included
Carniola Carniola ( sl, Kranjska; , german: Krain; it, Carniola; hu, Krajna) is a historical region that comprised parts of present-day Slovenia. Although as a whole it does not exist anymore, Slovenes living within the former borders of the region sti ...
,
Carinthia Carinthia (german: Kärnten ; sl, Koroška ) is the southernmost Austrian state, in the Eastern Alps, and is noted for its mountains and lakes. The main language is German. Its regional dialects belong to the Southern Bavarian group. Carin ...
,
Styria Styria (german: Steiermark ; Serbo-Croatian and sl, ; hu, Stájerország) is a state (''Bundesland'') in the southeast of Austria. With an area of , Styria is the second largest state of Austria, after Lower Austria. Styria is bordered t ...
, and the
Littoral The littoral zone or nearshore is the part of a sea, lake, or river that is close to the shore. In coastal ecology, the littoral zone includes the intertidal zone extending from the high water mark (which is rarely inundated), to coastal ar ...
. Stronger than with either the Carniola as a whole, or with Slovenia as the state, Slovenes historically tend to identify themselves with the traditional regions of
Slovene Littoral The Slovene Littoral ( sl, Primorska, ; it, Litorale; german: Küstenland) is one of the five traditional regions of Slovenia. Its name recalls the former Austrian Littoral (''Avstrijsko Primorje''), the Habsburg possessions on the upper Adri ...
,
Prekmurje Prekmurje (; dialectically: ''Prèkmürsko'' or ''Prèkmüre''; hu, Muravidék) is a geographically, linguistically, culturally and ethnically defined region of Slovenia, settled by Slovenes and a Hungarian minority, lying between the Mur R ...
, and even traditional (sub)regions, such as Upper, Lower and, to a lesser extent, Inner Carniola.Repe, Božo (2003
Od deželana do državljana: Regionalni razvoj Slovencev v letih 1918–1991
, Zgodovinski časopis, 3–4, Ljubljana.
The capital city Ljubljana was historically the administrative centre of Carniola and belonged to
Inner Carniola Inner Carniola ( sl, Notranjska; german: Innerkrain) is a traditional region of Slovenia, the southwestern part of the larger Carniola region. It comprises the Hrušica karst plateau up to Postojna Gate, bordering the Slovenian Littoral (the ...
, except for the Šentvid district, which was in
Upper Carniola Upper Carniola ( sl, Gorenjska; it, Alta Carniola; german: Oberkrain) is a traditional region of Slovenia, the northern mountainous part of the larger Carniola region. The centre of the region is Kranj, while other urban centers include Jese ...
and also where the border between German-annexed territory and the Italian
Province of Ljubljana The Province of Ljubljana ( it, Provincia di Lubiana, sl, Ljubljanska pokrajina, german: Provinz Laibach) was the central-southern area of Slovenia. In 1941, it was annexed by Fascist Italy, and after 1943 occupied by Nazi Germany. Created on May ...
was during the
Second World War World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a world war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. It involved the World War II by country, vast majority of the world's countries—including all of the great power ...
.


Statistical regions

The 12 ''statistical regions'' have no administrative function and are subdivided into two macroregions for the purpose of the
Regional policy of the European Union The regional policy of the European Union (EU), also referred as Cohesion Policy, is a policy with the stated aim of improving the economic well-being of regions in the European Union and also to avoid regional disparities. More than one third ...
. These two macroregions are: * Eastern Slovenia (''Vzhodna Slovenija'' – SI01), which groups the Mura, Drava, Carinthia, Savinja, Central Sava, Lower Sava, Southeast Slovenia, and Inner Carniola–Karst statistical regions. * Western Slovenia (''Zahodna Slovenija'' – SI02), which groups the Central Slovenia, Upper Carniola, Gorizia, and Coastal–Karst statistical regions.


International interventions

In 2022 Slovenia joined a list of nations banning Russian aircraft from its
airspace Airspace is the portion of the atmosphere controlled by a country above its territory, including its territorial waters or, more generally, any specific three-dimensional portion of the atmosphere. It is not the same as aerospace, which is the ...
as a sanction against it for invading Ukraine.


Economy

Slovenia has a developed economy and is the richest Slavic country by GDP per capita. Slovenia is also among the top global economies in terms of
human capital Human capital is a concept used by social scientists to designate personal attributes considered useful in the production process. It encompasses employee knowledge, skills, know-how, good health, and education. Human capital has a substantial ...
.The World Bank: the human capital index (HCI), 2018
Retrieved 8. October 2019.
It is the most developed transition country with an old
mining Mining is the extraction of valuable minerals or other geological materials from the Earth, usually from an ore body, lode, vein, seam, reef, or placer deposit. The exploitation of these deposits for raw material is based on the economic ...
- industrial tradition,
chemical industry The chemical industry comprises the companies that produce industrial chemicals. Central to the modern world economy, it converts raw materials ( oil, natural gas, air, water, metals, and minerals) into more than 70,000 different products. The ...
, and developed service activities. Slovenia was in the beginning of 2007 the first new member to introduce the
euro The euro (symbol: €; code: EUR) is the official currency of 19 out of the member states of the European Union (EU). This group of states is known as the eurozone or, officially, the euro area, and includes about 340 million citizens . ...
as its currency, replacing the tolar. Since 2010, it has been member of the
Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD; french: Organisation de coopération et de développement économiques, ''OCDE'') is an intergovernmental organisation with 38 member countries, founded in 1961 to stimulate ...
. There is a big difference in prosperity between the various regions. The economically wealthiest regions are the Central Slovenia region, which includes the capital
Ljubljana Ljubljana (also known by other Ljubljana#Name, historical names) is the Capital city, capital and largest city of Slovenia. It is the country's cultural, educational, economic, political and administrative center. During antiquity, a Roman city ...
and the western Slovenian regions (the
Gorizia Gorizia (; sl, Gorica , colloquially 'old Gorizia' to distinguish it from Nova Gorica; fur, label= Standard Friulian, Gurize, fur, label= Southeastern Friulian, Guriza; vec, label= Bisiacco, Gorisia; german: Görz ; obsolete English ''Gorit ...
and Coastal–Karst Statistical Regions), while the least wealthy regions are the Mura, Central Sava, and Littoral–Inner Carniola Statistical Regions."Regional Disparities in Slovenia 2/12"
retrieved 8 April 2015.


Economic growth

In 2004–06, the economy grew on average by nearly 5% a year in Slovenia; in 2007, it expanded by almost 7%. The growth surge was fuelled by debt, particularly among firms, and especially in construction. The
financial crisis of 2007–2010 Finance is the study and discipline of money, currency and capital assets. It is related to, but not synonymous with economics, the study of production, distribution, and consumption of money, assets, goods and services (the discipline of ...
and European sovereign-debt crisis had a significant impact on the domestic economy. The construction industry was severely hit in 2010 and 2011. In 2009, Slovenian
GDP per capita Lists of countries by GDP per capita list the countries in the world by their gross domestic product (GDP) per capita. The lists may be based on nominal or purchasing power parity GDP. Gross national income (GNI) per capita accounts for inflo ...
shrank by 8%, the biggest decline in the European Union after the
Baltic countries The Baltic states, et, Balti riigid or the Baltic countries is a geopolitical term, which currently is used to group three countries: Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania. All three countries are members of NATO, the European Union, the Eurozone ...
and Finland. An increasing burden for the Slovenian economy has been its rapidly aging population. In August 2012, the year-on-year contraction was 0.8%; however, 0.2% growth was recorded in the first quarter (in relation to the quarter before, after data was adjusted according to season and working days). Year-on-year contraction has been attributed to the fall in domestic consumption and the slowdown in export growth. The decrease in domestic consumption has been attributed to the fiscal
austerity Austerity is a set of political-economic policies that aim to reduce government budget deficits through spending cuts, tax increases, or a combination of both. There are three primary types of austerity measures: higher taxes to fund spend ...
, to the freeze on budget expenditure in the final months of 2011, to the failure of the efforts to implement economic reforms, to inappropriate financing, and to the decrease in exports. Due to the effects of the crisis, it was expected that several banks had to be bailed out by EU funds in 2013; however, needed capital was able to be covered by the country's own funds. Fiscal actions and legislations aiming on the reduction of spendings as well as several privatisations supported an economic recovery as from 2014. The real economic growth rate was at 2.5% in 2016 and accelerated to 5% in 2017. The construction sector has seen a recent increase, and the tourism industry is expected to have continuous rising numbers.


National debt

Slovenia's total
national debt A country's gross government debt (also called public debt, or sovereign debt) is the financial liabilities of the government sector. Changes in government debt over time reflect primarily borrowing due to past government deficits. A deficit o ...
rose substantially during the
Great Recession The Great Recession was a period of marked general decline, i.e. a recession, observed in national economies globally that occurred from late 2007 into 2009. The scale and timing of the recession varied from country to country (see map). At t ...
and was decreasing ; at the end of 2018 amounted to 32,223 million euros, 70% of the GDP.


Services and industry

Almost two-thirds of people are employed in services, and over one-third in industry and construction. Slovenia benefits from a well-educated workforce, well-developed infrastructure, and its location at the crossroads of major trade routes. The level of
foreign direct investment A foreign direct investment (FDI) is an investment in the form of a controlling ownership in a business in one country by an entity based in another country. It is thus distinguished from a foreign portfolio investment by a notion of direct c ...
 (FDI) per capita in Slovenia is one of the lowest in the EU, and the labor productivity and the competitiveness of the Slovenian economy is still significantly below the EU average. Taxes are relatively high, the labor market is seen by business interests as being inflexible, and industries are losing sales to China, India, and elsewhere. High level of openness makes Slovenia extremely sensitive to economic conditions in its main trading partners and changes in its international price competitiveness. The main industries are motor vehicles, electric and electronic equipment, machinery,
pharmaceutical A medication (also called medicament, medicine, pharmaceutical drug, medicinal drug or simply drug) is a drug used to diagnose, cure, treat, or prevent disease. Drug therapy (pharmacotherapy) is an important part of the medical field and ...
s, and fuels. Examples of major Slovenian companies operating in Slovenia include the home appliance manufacturer Gorenje, the pharmaceutical companies Krka and Lek (
Novartis Novartis AG is a Swiss-American multinational pharmaceutical corporation based in Basel, Switzerland and Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States (global research).name="novartis.com">https://www.novartis.com/research-development/research-loc ...
' subsidiary), the oil distributing company Petrol Group, energy distribution companys GEN, GEN-I, HSE and
Revoz Revoz () is a manufacturing subsidiary of Renault in Novo Mesto, Slovenia. It is the only automaker in the country and one of its largest exporters. The company was established in June 1988 as a joint venture between Renault and Industrija Motorn ...
, a manufacturing subsidiary of
Renault Groupe Renault ( , , , also known as the Renault Group in English; legally Renault S.A.) is a French Multinational corporation, multinational Automotive industry, automobile manufacturer established in 1899. The company produces a range of ...
.


Energy

In 2018, the net energy production was 12,262 GWh and consumption was 14,501 GWh. Hydroelectric plants produced 4,421 GWh, thermal plants produced 4,049 GWh, and the Krško Nuclear Power Plant produced 2,742 GWh (50% share that goes to Slovenia; other 50% goes to Croatia due to joint ownership). Domestic electricity consumption was covered 84.6% by domestic production; percentage is decreasing from year to year meaning Slovenia is more and more depending on electricity import. A new 600 MW block of Šoštanj thermal power plant finished construction and went online in the autumn of 2014. The new 39.5 MW HE Krško hydro power plant was finished in 2013, and has since been the largest sole energy producer, accounting for of the gross energy production in 2018. The 41.5 MW HE Brežice and 30.5 MW HE Mokrice hydro power plants were built on the
Sava The Sava (; , ; sr-cyr, Сава, hu, Száva) is a river in Central and Southeast Europe, a right-bank and the longest tributary of the Danube. It flows through Slovenia, Croatia and along its border with Bosnia and Herzegovina, and finally th ...
River in 2018 and the construction of ten more hydropower plants with a cumulative capacity of 338 MW is planned to be finished by 2030. A large pumped-storage hydro power plant Kozjak on the River is in the planning stage. At the end of 2018, at least 295 MWp of photovoltaic modules and 31,4 MW of biogas powerplants were installed. Compared to 2017, renewable energy sources contributed 5,6 percentage points more into whole energy consumption. There is interest to add more production in the area of solar and wind energy sources (subsidising schemes are increasing economic feasibility), but microlocation settlement procedures take enormous toll on the efficiency of this intitiatve (nature preservation vs. energy production facilities dilemma).


Tourism

Slovenia offers tourists a wide variety of natural and cultural amenities. Different forms of tourism have developed. The tourist gravitational area is considerably large, however the tourist market is small. There has been no large-scale tourism and no acute environmental pressures; in 2017,
National Geographic ''National Geographic'' (formerly the ''National Geographic Magazine'', sometimes branded as NAT GEO) is a popular American monthly magazine published by National Geographic Partners. Known for its photojournalism, it is one of the most wide ...
Traveller's Magazine declared Slovenia as the country with the world's most sustainable tourism.The nation's capital, Ljubljana, has many important
Baroque The Baroque (, ; ) is a style of architecture, music, dance, painting, sculpture, poetry, and other arts that flourished in Europe from the early 17th century until the 1750s. In the territories of the Spanish and Portuguese empires includin ...
and
Vienna Secession The Vienna Secession (german: Wiener Secession; also known as ''the Union of Austrian Artists'', or ''Vereinigung Bildender Künstler Österreichs'') is an art movement, closely related to Art Nouveau, that was formed in 1897 by a group of Austri ...
buildings, with several important works of the native born architect
Jože Plečnik Jože Plečnik () (23 January 1872 – 7 January 1957) was a Slovene architect who had a major impact on the modern architecture of Vienna, Prague and of Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia, most notably by designing the iconic Triple Bridge an ...
and also his pupil, architect Edo Ravnikar. At the northwestern corner of the country lie the
Julian Alps The Julian Alps ( sl, Julijske Alpe, it, Alpi Giulie, , ) are a mountain range of the Southern Limestone Alps that stretch from northeastern Italy to Slovenia, where they rise to 2,864 m at Mount Triglav, the highest peak in Slovenia. A large p ...
with Lake Bled and the
Soča The Soča ( in Slovene) or Isonzo ( in Italian; other names fur, Lusinç, german: Sontig, la, Aesontius or ') is a long river that flows through western Slovenia () and northeastern Italy (). An Alpine river in character, its source lies ...
Valley, as well as the nation's highest peak, Mount Triglav in the middle of
Triglav National Park Triglav National Park (TNP) ( sl, Triglavski narodni park) is the only national park in Slovenia. It was established in its modern form in 1981 and is located in the northwestern part of the country, respectively the southeastern part of the Al ...
. Other mountain ranges include
Kamnik–Savinja Alps The Kamnik–Savinja Alps ( sl, Kamniško-Savinjske Alpe) are a mountain range of the Southern Limestone Alps. They lie in northern Slovenia, except for the northernmost part, which lies in Austria. The western part of the range was named the ...
, the
Karawanks The Karawanks or Karavankas or Karavanks ( sl, Karavanke; german: Karawanken, ) are a mountain range of the Southern Limestone Alps on the border between Slovenia to the south and Austria to the north. With a total length of in an east–west d ...
, and
Pohorje Pohorje (), also known as the Pohorje Massif or the Pohorje Mountains (german: Bachergebirge, ''Bacherngebirge'' or often simply ''Bachern''), is a mostly wooded, medium-high mountain range south of the Drava River in northeastern Slovenia. Acco ...
, popular with skiers and hikers. The
Karst Plateau The Karst Plateau or the Karst region ( sl, Kras, it, Carso), also locally called Karst, is a karst plateau region extending across the border of southwestern Slovenia and northeastern Italy. It lies between the Vipava Valley, the low hills su ...
in the
Slovene Littoral The Slovene Littoral ( sl, Primorska, ; it, Litorale; german: Küstenland) is one of the five traditional regions of Slovenia. Its name recalls the former Austrian Littoral (''Avstrijsko Primorje''), the Habsburg possessions on the upper Adri ...
gave its name to
karst Karst is a topography formed from the dissolution of soluble rocks such as limestone, dolomite, and gypsum. It is characterized by underground drainage systems with sinkholes and caves. It has also been documented for more weathering-resistant ...
, a landscape shaped by water dissolving the carbonate bedrock, forming caves. The best-known caves are Postojna Cave and the
UNESCO The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations (UN) aimed at promoting world peace and security through international cooperation in education, arts, sciences and culture. It ...
-listed Škocjan Caves. The region of Slovenian Istria meets the
Adriatic Sea The Adriatic Sea () is a body of water separating the Italian Peninsula from the Balkan Peninsula. The Adriatic is the northernmost arm of the Mediterranean Sea, extending from the Strait of Otranto (where it connects to the Ionian Sea) to t ...
, where the most important historical monument is the
Venetian Gothic Venetian Gothic is the particular form of Italian Gothic architecture typical of Venice, originating in local building requirements, with some influence from Byzantine architecture, and some from Islamic architecture, reflecting Venice's tradi ...
Mediterranean town of Piran while the settlement of Portorož attracts crowds in summer. The hills around Slovenia's second-largest town, Maribor, are renowned for their wine-making. The northeastern part of the country is rich with spas, with Rogaška Slatina, Radenci, Čatež ob Savi, Dobrna, and Moravske Toplice growing in importance in the last two decades. Other popular tourist destinations include the historic cities of
Ptuj Ptuj (; german: Pettau, ; la, Poetovium/Poetovio) is a town in northeastern Slovenia that is the seat of the Municipality of Ptuj. Ptuj, the oldest recorded city in Slovenia, has been inhabited since the late Stone Age and developed from a Roman ...
and
Škofja Loka Škofja Loka (; german: Bischoflack) is a town in Slovenia. It is the economic, cultural, educational, and administrative center of the Municipality of Škofja Loka in Upper Carniola. It has about 12,000 inhabitants. Geography Škofja Loka lies ...
, and several castles, such as
Predjama Castle 300px, Predjama Castle Predjama Castle ( sl, Predjamski grad or , German: '' Höhlenburg Lueg'', it, Castel Lueghi) is a Renaissance castle built within a cave mouth in south-central Slovenia, in the historical region of Inner Carniola. It is ...
. Important parts of tourism in Slovenia include congress and gambling tourism. Slovenia is the country with the highest percentage of
casino A casino is a facility for certain types of gambling. Casinos are often built near or combined with hotels, resorts, restaurants, retail shopping, cruise ships, and other tourist attractions. Some casinos are also known for hosting live entertai ...
s per 1,000 inhabitants in the European Union. Perla in
Nova Gorica A nova (plural novae or novas) is a transient astronomical event that causes the sudden appearance of a bright, apparently "new" star (hence the name "nova", which is Latin for "new") that slowly fades over weeks or months. Causes of the dramati ...
is the largest casino in the region. Most of foreign tourists to Slovenia come from the key European markets: Italy,
Austria Austria, , bar, Östareich officially the Republic of Austria, is a country in the southern part of Central Europe, lying in the Eastern Alps. It is a federation of nine states, one of which is the capital, Vienna, the most populous ...
, Germany,
Croatia , image_flag = Flag of Croatia.svg , image_coat = Coat of arms of Croatia.svg , anthem = " Lijepa naša domovino"("Our Beautiful Homeland") , image_map = , map_caption = , capi ...
,
Benelux The Benelux Union ( nl, Benelux Unie; french: Union Benelux; lb, Benelux-Unioun), also known as simply Benelux, is a politico-economic union and formal international intergovernmental cooperation of three neighboring states in western Europe: B ...
,
Serbia Serbia (, ; Serbian language, Serbian: , , ), officially the Republic of Serbia (Serbian language, Serbian: , , ), is a landlocked country in Southeast Europe, Southeastern and Central Europe, situated at the crossroads of the Pannonian Bas ...
, Russia and
Ukraine Ukraine ( uk, Україна, Ukraïna, ) is a country in Eastern Europe. It is the second-largest European country after Russia, which it borders to the east and northeast. Ukraine covers approximately . Prior to the ongoing Russian inva ...
, followed by UK and Ireland. European tourists create more than 90% of Slovenia's tourist income. In 2016, Slovenia was declared the world's first green country by the Netherlands-based organization Green Destinations. On being declared the most sustainable country in 2016, Slovenia had a big part to play at the ITB Berlin to promote sustainable tourism.


Transport

Since Antiquity, geography has dictated transport routes in Slovenia. Significant mountain ranges, major rivers and proximity to the Danube played roles in the development of the area's transportation corridors. One recent particular advantage are the Pan-European transport corridors V (the fastest link between the North Adriatic, and Central and Eastern Europe) and X (linking Central Europe with the Balkans). This gives it a special position in the European social, economic and cultural integration and restructuring.


Roads

The road freight and passenger transport constitutes the largest part of transport in Slovenia at 80%. Personal cars are much more popular than public road passenger transport, which has significantly declined. Slovenia has a very high highway and motorway density compared to the European Union average. The highway system, the construction of which was accelerated after 1994, has slowly but steadily transformed Slovenia into a large
conurbation A conurbation is a region comprising a number of metropolises, cities, large towns, and other urban areas which through population growth and physical expansion, have merged to form one continuous urban or industrially developed area. In most cas ...
. Other state roads have been rapidly deteriorating because of neglect and the overall increase in traffic.


Railways

The existing Slovenian railways are out-of-date and have difficulty competing with the motorway network; partially also as a result of dispersed population settlement. Due to this fact and the projected increase in traffic through the port of
Koper Koper (; it, Capodistria, hr, Kopar) is the fifth largest city in Slovenia. Located in the Istrian region in the southwestern part of the country, approximately five kilometres () south of the border with Italy and 20 kilometres () from Tries ...
, which is primarily by train, a second rail on the Koper-Divača route is in early stages of starting construction. With a lack of financial assets, maintenance and modernisation of the Slovenian railway network have been neglected. Due to the out-of-date infrastructure, the share of the railway freight transport has been in decline in Slovenia. The railway passenger transport has been recovering after a large drop in the 1990s. The Pan-European railway corridors V and X, and several other major European rail lines intersect in Slovenia.


Ports

The major Slovenian port is the Port of Koper. It is the largest Northern Adriatic port in terms of container transport, with almost 590,000
TEUs The twenty-foot equivalent unit (abbreviated TEU or teu) is an inexact unit of cargo capacity, often used for container ships and container ports.Rowlett, 2004. It is based on the volume of a intermodal container, a standard-sized metal box whic ...
annually and lines to all major world ports. It is much closer to destinations east of the
Suez Suez ( ar, السويس '; ) is a seaport city (population of about 750,000 ) in north-eastern Egypt, located on the north coast of the Gulf of Suez (a branch of the Red Sea), near the southern terminus of the Suez Canal, having the same bou ...
than the ports of Northern Europe. In addition, the maritime passenger traffic mostly takes place in Koper. Two smaller ports used for the international passenger transport as well as cargo transport are located in Izola and Piran. Passenger transport mainly takes place with Italy and Croatia. Splošna plovba, the only Slovenian shipping company, transports freight and is active only in foreign ports.


Air

Air transport in Slovenia is quite low, but has significantly grown since 1991. Of the three international airports in Slovenia,
Ljubljana Jože Pučnik Airport Ljubljana Jože Pučnik Airport ( sl, Letališče Jožeta Pučnika Ljubljana) , also known by its previous name ''Brnik Airport'' ( sl, Letališče Brnik), is the international airport serving Ljubljana and the largest airport in Slovenia. It is ...
in central Slovenia is the busiest, with connections to many major European destinations. The Maribor Edvard Rusjan Airport is located in the eastern part of the country and the Portorož Airport in the western part. The state-owned Adria Airways is the largest Slovenian airline; however in 2019 it declared bankruptcy and ceased operations. Since 2003, several new carriers have entered the market, mainly low-cost airlines. The only Slovenian military airport is the Cerklje ob Krki Air Base in the southwestern part of the country. There are also 12 
public airport An airport is an aerodrome with extended facilities, mostly for commercial air transport. Airports usually consists of a landing area, which comprises an aerially accessible open space including at least one operationally active surfac ...
s in Slovenia.


Demographics

With 101 inhabitants per square kilometer (262/sq mi), Slovenia ranks low among the European countries in population density (compared to 402/km2 (1042/sq mi) for the
Netherlands ) , anthem = ( en, "William of Nassau") , image_map = , map_caption = , subdivision_type = Sovereign state , subdivision_name = Kingdom of the Netherlands , established_title = Before independence , established_date = Spanish Nethe ...
or 195/km2 (505/sq mi) for Italy). The Inner Carniola–Karst Statistical Region has the lowest population density while the
Central Slovenia Statistical Region The Central Slovenia Statistical Region ( sl, Osrednjeslovenska statistična regija) is a statistical region in central Slovenia. Geography This is the second-largest region in terms of territory. It has a total area of 2,555 km², with a ...
has the highest. Slovenia is among the European countries with the most pronounced ageing of its population, ascribable to a low birth rate and increasing life expectancy. Almost all Slovenian inhabitants older than 64 are retired, with no significant difference between the genders. The working-age group is diminishing in spite of immigration. The proposal to raise the retirement age from the current 57 for women and 58 for men was rejected in a referendum in 2011. In addition, the difference among the genders regarding life expectancy is still significant. The
total fertility rate The total fertility rate (TFR) of a population is the average number of children that would be born to a woman over her lifetime if: # she were to experience the exact current age-specific fertility rates (ASFRs) through her lifetime # she were t ...
(TFR) in 2014 was estimated at 1.33 children born/woman, which is lower than the replacement rate of 2.1. The majority of children are born to unmarried women (in 2016, 58.6% of all births were outside of marriage). In 2018, life expectancy at birth was 81.1 years (78.2 years male, and 84 years female). In 2009, the suicide rate in Slovenia was 22 per 100,000 persons per year, which places Slovenia among the highest ranked European countries in this regard. Nonetheless, from 2000 until 2010, the rate has decreased by about 30%. The differences between regions and the genders are pronounced.


Urbanisation

Depending on definition, between 65% and 79% of people live in wider urban areas. According to
OECD The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD; french: Organisation de coopération et de développement économiques, ''OCDE'') is an intergovernmental organisation with 38 member countries, founded in 1961 to stimulate e ...
definition of rural areas none of the Slovene statistical regions is mostly urbanised, meaning that 15% or less of the population lives in rural communities. According to this definition statistical regions are classified: * mostly rural regions: Mura, ,
Carinthia Carinthia (german: Kärnten ; sl, Koroška ) is the southernmost Austrian state, in the Eastern Alps, and is noted for its mountains and lakes. The main language is German. Its regional dialects belong to the Southern Bavarian group. Carin ...
,
Savinja The Savinja () is a river in northeast Slovenia which flows mostly in the Upper and Lower Savinja Valley ( sl, Zgornja in Spodnja Savinjska dolina) and through the cities of Celje and Laško. The Savinja is the main river of the Savinja Alps ( ...
, Lower Sava, Littoral–Inner Carniola,
Gorizia Gorizia (; sl, Gorica , colloquially 'old Gorizia' to distinguish it from Nova Gorica; fur, label= Standard Friulian, Gurize, fur, label= Southeastern Friulian, Guriza; vec, label= Bisiacco, Gorisia; german: Görz ; obsolete English ''Gorit ...
, Southeast Slovenia * moderately rural regions: Central Sava,
Upper Carniola Upper Carniola ( sl, Gorenjska; it, Alta Carniola; german: Oberkrain) is a traditional region of Slovenia, the northern mountainous part of the larger Carniola region. The centre of the region is Kranj, while other urban centers include Jese ...
, Coastal–Karst, Central Slovenia. The only large town is the capital, Ljubljana. Other (medium-sized) towns include Maribor, Celje, and Kranj. Overall, there are eleven urban municipalities in Slovenia.


Municipalities by population

212 municipalities in total.
Hodoš Hodoš (; hu, Hodos or , german: Hodosch) is a village in Slovenia. It is the seat of the Municipality of Hodoš. It is part of the Prekmurje region. Name Hodoš was first mentioned in written sources in 1331 as ''de Hudus-feu'' (and as ''Hodo ...
, the smallest, has 354 inhabitants.


Municipalities by area

Odranci, the smallest, measures 6.9 km2.


Languages

The official language in Slovenia is Slovene, which is a member of the South Slavic language group. In 2002, Slovene was the native language of around 88% of Slovenia's population according to the census, with more than 92% of the Slovenian population speaking it in their home environment. This statistic ranks Slovenia among the most homogeneous countries in the EU in terms of the share of speakers of the predominant mother tongue. Slovene is a highly diverse Slavic language in terms of dialects, with different degrees of mutual intelligibility. Accounts of the number of dialects range from as few as seven dialects, often considered dialect groups or dialect bases that are further subdivided into as many as 50 dialects. Other sources characterize the number of dialects as nine or as eight. Hungarian and Italian, spoken by the respective minorities, enjoy the status of official languages in the ethnically mixed regions along the Hungarian and Italian borders, to the extent that even the passports issued in those areas are bilingual. In 2002 around 0.2% of the Slovenian population spoke Italian and around 0.4% spoke Hungarian as their native language. Hungarian is co-official with Slovene in 30 settlements in 5 municipalities (whereof 3 are officially bilingual). Italian is co-official with Slovene in 25 settlements in 4 municipalities (all of them officially bilingual). Romani, spoken in 2002 as the native language by 0.2% of people, is a legally protected language in Slovenia. Romani-speakers mainly belong to the geographically dispersed and marginalized Roma community. German, which used to be the largest minority language in Slovenia prior to World War II (around 4% of the population in 1921), is now the native language of only around 0.08% of the population, the majority of whom are more than 60 years old. Gottscheerish or ''Granish'', the traditional German dialect of
Gottschee Gottschee (, sl, Kočevsko) refers to a former German-speaking region in Carniola, a crownland of the Habsburg Empire, part of the historical and traditional region of Lower Carniola, now in Slovenia. The region has been a county, duchy, distri ...
County, faces extinction. A significant number of people in Slovenia speak a variant of
Serbo-Croatian Serbo-Croatian () – also called Serbo-Croat (), Serbo-Croat-Bosnian (SCB), Bosnian-Croatian-Serbian (BCS), and Bosnian-Croatian-Montenegrin-Serbian (BCMS) – is a South Slavic language and the primary language of Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia an ...
( Serbian, Croatian, Bosnian, or Montenegrin) as their native language. These are mostly immigrants who moved to Slovenia from other former Yugoslav republics from the 1960s to the late 1980s, and their descendants. Altogether, Serbo-Croatian in its different forms is the second natively spoken language in Slovenia with 5,9% of population. In 2002, 0.4% of the Slovenian population declared themselves to be native speakers of Albanian and 0.2% native speakers of Macedonian.
Czech Czech may refer to: * Anything from or related to the Czech Republic, a country in Europe ** Czech language ** Czechs, the people of the area ** Czech culture ** Czech cuisine * One of three mythical brothers, Lech, Czech, and Rus' Places * Czec ...
, the fourth-largest minority language in Slovenia prior to World War II (after German, Hungarian, and Serbo-Croatian), is now the native language of a few hundred residents of Slovenia. Regarding the knowledge of foreign languages, Slovenia ranks among the top European countries. The most taught foreign languages are English, German, Italian, French and Spanish. , 92% of the population between the age of 25 and 64 spoke at least one foreign language and around 71.8% of them spoke at least two foreign languages, which was the highest percentage in the European Union. According to the
Eurobarometer Eurobarometer is a series of public opinion surveys conducted regularly on behalf of the European Commission and other EU Institutions since 1973. These surveys address a wide variety of topical issues relating to the European Union throughout ...
survey, the majority of Slovenes could speak Croatian (61%) and English (56%). A reported 42% of Slovenes could speak German, which was one of the highest percentages outside German-speaking countries. Italian is widely spoken on the Slovenian Coast and in some other areas of the
Slovene Littoral The Slovene Littoral ( sl, Primorska, ; it, Litorale; german: Küstenland) is one of the five traditional regions of Slovenia. Its name recalls the former Austrian Littoral (''Avstrijsko Primorje''), the Habsburg possessions on the upper Adri ...
. Around 15% of Slovenians can speak Italian, which is (according to the Eurobarometer pool) the third-highest percentage in the European Union, after Italy and
Malta Malta ( , , ), officially the Republic of Malta ( mt, Repubblika ta' Malta ), is an island country in the Mediterranean Sea. It consists of an archipelago, between Italy and Libya, and is often considered a part of Southern Europe. It lies ...
.


Immigration

In 2015, about 12% (237,616 people) of the population in Slovenia was born abroad. About 86% of the foreign-born population originated from other countries of former Yugoslavia as (in descending order)
Bosnia-Herzegovina Bosnia and Herzegovina ( sh, / , ), abbreviated BiH () or B&H, sometimes called Bosnia–Herzegovina and often known informally as Bosnia, is a country at the crossroads of south and southeast Europe, located in the Balkans. Bosnia and He ...
, followed by immigrants from
Croatia , image_flag = Flag of Croatia.svg , image_coat = Coat of arms of Croatia.svg , anthem = " Lijepa naša domovino"("Our Beautiful Homeland") , image_map = , map_caption = , capi ...
,
Serbia Serbia (, ; Serbian language, Serbian: , , ), officially the Republic of Serbia (Serbian language, Serbian: , , ), is a landlocked country in Southeast Europe, Southeastern and Central Europe, situated at the crossroads of the Pannonian Bas ...
,
North Macedonia North Macedonia, ; sq, Maqedonia e Veriut, (Macedonia before February 2019), officially the Republic of North Macedonia,, is a country in Southeast Europe. It gained independence in 1991 as one of the successor states of Yugoslavia. I ...
, and
Kosovo Kosovo ( sq, Kosova or ; sr-Cyrl, Косово ), officially the Republic of Kosovo ( sq, Republika e Kosovës, links=no; sr, Република Косово, Republika Kosovo, links=no), is a partially recognised state in Southeast Eur ...
. By the beginning of 2017, there were about 114,438 people with foreign citizenship residing in the country making up 5.5% of the total population. Of these foreigners, 76% had citizenships of the other countries from former Yugoslavia (excluding Croatia). Additionally 16.4% had EU-citizenships and 7.6% had citizenships of other countries. According to the 2002 census, Slovenia's main ethnic group are
Slovenes The Slovenes, also known as Slovenians ( sl, Slovenci ), are a South Slavic ethnic group native to Slovenia, and adjacent regions in Italy, Austria and Hungary. Slovenes share a common ancestry, culture, history and speak Slovene as their na ...
(83%); however, their share in the total population is continuously decreasing, due to their relatively low
fertility rate The total fertility rate (TFR) of a population is the average number of children that would be born to a woman over her lifetime if: # she were to experience the exact current age-specific fertility rates (ASFRs) through her lifetime # she were t ...
. At least 13% (2002) of the population were immigrants from other parts of
Former Yugoslavia The Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, commonly referred to as SFR Yugoslavia or simply as Yugoslavia, was a country in Central and Southeast Europe. It emerged in 1945, following World War II, and lasted until 1992, with the breakup of Yug ...
and their descendants. They have settled mainly in cities and suburbanised areas. Relatively small but protected by the Constitution of Slovenia are the Hungarian and the Italian ethnic minority. A special position is held by the autochthonous and geographically dispersed Roma ethnic community. The number of people immigrating into Slovenia rose steadily from 1995 and has been increasing even more rapidly in recent years. After Slovenia joined the EU in 2004, the annual number of immigrants doubled by 2006 and increased by half yet again by 2009. In 2007, Slovenia had one of the fastest growing
net migration rate Net or net may refer to: Mathematics and physics * Net (mathematics), a filter-like topological generalization of a sequence * Net, a linear system of divisors of dimension 2 * Net (polyhedron), an arrangement of polygons that can be folded up ...
s in the European Union.


Emigration

Between 1880 and 1918 (the period covering
World War I World War I (28 July 1914 11 November 1918), often abbreviated as WWI, was List of wars and anthropogenic disasters by death toll, one of the deadliest global conflicts in history. Belligerents included much of Europe, the Russian Empire, ...
), many men left Slovenia to work in mining areas in other nations. The United States in particular has been a common choice for emigration, with the 1910 US Census showing that there were already "183,431 persons in the USA of Slovenian mother tongue". However, there may have been many more, because a good number avoided anti-Slavic prejudice and "identified themselves as Austrians." Favorite localities before 1900 were
Minnesota Minnesota () is a state in the upper midwestern region of the United States. It is the 12th largest U.S. state in area and the 22nd most populous, with over 5.75 million residents. Minnesota is home to western prairies, now given over ...
,
Wisconsin Wisconsin () is a state in the upper Midwestern United States. Wisconsin is the 25th-largest state by total area and the 20th-most populous. It is bordered by Minnesota to the west, Iowa to the southwest, Illinois to the south, Lake Mich ...
,
Michigan Michigan () is a state in the Great Lakes region of the upper Midwestern United States. With a population of nearly 10.12 million and an area of nearly , Michigan is the 10th-largest state by population, the 11th-largest by area, and the ...
, as well as
Omaha, Nebraska Omaha ( ) is the largest city in the U.S. state of Nebraska and the county seat of Douglas County. Omaha is in the Midwestern United States on the Missouri River, about north of the mouth of the Platte River. The nation's 39th-largest ci ...
,
Joliet, Illinois Joliet ( ) is a city in Will and Kendall counties in the U.S. state of Illinois, southwest of Chicago. It is the county seat of Will County. At the 2020 census, the city was the third-largest in Illinois, with a population of 150,362. His ...
,
Cleveland Cleveland ( ), officially the City of Cleveland, is a city in the U.S. state of Ohio and the county seat of Cuyahoga County. Located in the northeastern part of the state, it is situated along the southern shore of Lake Erie, across the U. ...
, Ohio, and rural areas of Iowa. After 1910, they settled in Utah (Bingham Copper Mine), Colorado (especially
Pueblo In the Southwestern United States, Pueblo (capitalized) refers to the Native tribes of Puebloans having fixed-location communities with permanent buildings which also are called pueblos (lowercased). The Spanish explorers of northern New Spain ...
), and
Butte __NOTOC__ In geomorphology, a butte () is an isolated hill with steep, often vertical sides and a small, relatively flat top; buttes are smaller landforms than mesas, plateaus, and tablelands. The word ''butte'' comes from a French word me ...
, Montana. These areas attracted many single men (who often boarded with Slovenian families). After locating work and having sufficient money, the men sent back for their wives and families to join them.


Religion

Before World War II, 97% of the population declared itself Roman Catholicism in Slovenia, Catholic (Roman Rite), around 2.5% as Lutheran, and around 0.5% of residents identified themselves as members of other denominations. After 1945, the country underwent a process of gradual but steady secularization. After a decade of persecution of religions, the Communist regime adopted a policy of relative tolerance towards churches. After 1990, the Catholic Church regained some of its former influence, but Slovenia remains a largely secularized society. According to the 2002 census, 57.8% of the population is Catholic. In 1991, 71.6% were self-declared Catholics which means a drop of more than 1% annually. The vast majority of Slovenian Catholics belong to the Latin Rite. A small number of Eastern Catholic Churches, Greek Catholics live in the White Carniola region. The 2018 Eurobarometer data shows 73.4% of population identifying as Catholic that fell to 72.1% in the 2019 Eurobarometer survey. According to the Catholic Church data, the Catholic population fell from 78.04% in 2009 to 72.11% in 2019 Despite a relatively small number of Protestants (less than 1% in 2002), the Protestant legacy is historically significant given that the Slovene standard language and Slovene literature were established by the Protestant Reformation in the 16th century. Primoz Trubar, a theologian in the Lutheran tradition, was one of the most influential Protestant Reformers in Slovenia. Protestantism was extinguished in the Counter-Reformation implemented by the Habsburg dynasty, which controlled the region. It only survived in the easternmost regions due to protection of Hungarian nobles, who often happened to be Calvinist themselves. Today, a significant Lutheranism, Lutheran minority lives in the easternmost region of
Prekmurje Prekmurje (; dialectically: ''Prèkmürsko'' or ''Prèkmüre''; hu, Muravidék) is a geographically, linguistically, culturally and ethnically defined region of Slovenia, settled by Slovenes and a Hungarian minority, lying between the Mur R ...
, where they represent around a fifth of the population and are headed by a bishop with the seat in Murska Sobota. The third largest denomination, with around 2.2% of the population, is the Eastern Orthodox Church, with most adherents belonging to the Serbian Orthodox Church while a minority belongs to the Macedonian Orthodox Church, Macedonian and other Eastern Orthodox churches. According to the 2002 census, Islam is the second largest religious denomination in the country, with around 2.4% of the population. Most Slovenian Muslims came from Bosnia. Slovenia has long been home to a History of the Jews in Slovenia, Jewish community. Despite the losses suffered during the Holocaust, Judaism still numbers a few hundred adherents, mostly living in Ljubljana, site of the sole remaining active synagogue in the country. In the 2002, around 10% of Slovenes declared themselves as atheists, another 10% professed no specific denomination, and around 16% decided not to answer the question about their religious affiliation. According to the
Eurobarometer Eurobarometer is a series of public opinion surveys conducted regularly on behalf of the European Commission and other EU Institutions since 1973. These surveys address a wide variety of topical issues relating to the European Union throughout ...
Poll 2010, 32% of Slovenian citizens responded that "they believe there is a god", whereas 36% answered that "they believe there is some sort of spirit or life force" and 26% that "they do not believe there is any sort of spirit, god, or life force".


Education

Slovenia's education ranks as the 12th best in the world and 4th best in the
European Union The European Union (EU) is a supranational political and economic union of member states that are located primarily in Europe. The union has a total area of and an estimated total population of about 447million. The EU has often been ...
, being significantly higher than the
OECD The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD; french: Organisation de coopération et de développement économiques, ''OCDE'') is an intergovernmental organisation with 38 member countries, founded in 1961 to stimulate e ...
average, according to the Programme for International Student Assessment. Among people age 25 to 64, 12% have attended higher education, while on average Slovenes have 9.6 years of formal education. According to an OECD report, 83% of adults ages 25–64 have earned the equivalent of a high school degree, well above the OECD average of 74%; among 25- to 34-year-olds, the rate is 93%. According to the 1991 census there is 99.6% literacy in Slovenia. Lifelong learning is also increasing.


Primary

Responsibility for education oversight at primary and secondary level in Slovenia lies with the Ministry of Education and Sports. After non-compulsory pre-school education, children enter the nine-year primary school at the age of six. Primary school is divided into three periods, each of three years. In the academic year 2006–2007 there were 166,000 pupils enrolled in elementary education and more than 13,225 teachers, giving a ratio of one teacher per 12 pupils and 20 pupils per class.


Secondary

After completing elementary school, nearly all children (more than 98%) go on to secondary education, either vocational, technical or general secondary programmes (Gymnasium (school), gimnazija). The latter concludes with Matura#Matura in Slovenia, matura, the final exam that allows the graduates to enter a university. 84% of secondary school graduates go on to tertiary education.


Tertiary

Among several universities in Slovenia, the best ranked is the University of Ljubljana, ranking among the first 500 or the first 3% of the world's best universities according to the Academic Ranking of World Universities, ARWU. Two other public universities include the University of Maribor in Styria (Slovenia), Styria region and the University of Primorska in
Slovene Littoral The Slovene Littoral ( sl, Primorska, ; it, Litorale; german: Küstenland) is one of the five traditional regions of Slovenia. Its name recalls the former Austrian Littoral (''Avstrijsko Primorje''), the Habsburg possessions on the upper Adri ...
. In addition, there is a private University of Nova Gorica and an international EMUNI University.


Culture


Heritage

Slovenia's architectural heritage includes 2,500 churches, 1,000 castles, ruins, and manor houses, farmhouses, and special structures for drying hay, called hayracks (). Four natural and cultural sites in Slovenia are on the
UNESCO World Heritage Site A World Heritage Site is a landmark or area with legal protection by an international convention administered by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). World Heritage Sites are designated by UNESCO for h ...
list. Škocjan Caves and its
karst Karst is a topography formed from the dissolution of soluble rocks such as limestone, dolomite, and gypsum. It is characterized by underground drainage systems with sinkholes and caves. It has also been documented for more weathering-resistant ...
landscape are a protected site as the old forests in the area of Goteniški Snežnik and Kočevski Rog in the SE Slovenia. The Heritage of Mercury. Almadén and Idrija, Idrija Mercury mining site is of world importance, as are the Prehistoric pile dwellings around the Alps, prehistoric pile dwellings in the Ljubljana Marsh. The most picturesque church for photographers is the medieval and Baroque building on Lake Bled#Bled Island, Bled Island. The castle above the lake is a museum and restaurant with a view. Near Postojna there is a fortress called
Predjama Castle 300px, Predjama Castle Predjama Castle ( sl, Predjamski grad or , German: '' Höhlenburg Lueg'', it, Castel Lueghi) is a Renaissance castle built within a cave mouth in south-central Slovenia, in the historical region of Inner Carniola. It is ...
, half hidden in a cave. Museums in Ljubljana and elsewhere feature unique items such as the Divje Babe Flute and the Ljubljana Marshes Wheel, oldest wheel in the world. Ljubljana has medieval, Baroque, Art Nouveau, and modern architecture. The architect Plečnik's architecture and his innovative paths and bridges along the Ljubljanica are notable and on UNESCO tentative list.


Cuisine

Slovenian cuisine is a mixture of Central European cuisine (especially Austrian cuisine, Austrian and Hungarian cuisine, Hungarian), Mediterranean cuisine and Balkan cuisine. Historically, Slovenian cuisine was divided into town, farmhouse, cottage, castle, parsonage and monastic cuisines. Due to the variety of Slovenian cultural and natural landscapes, there are more than 40 distinct regional cuisines. Ethnology, Ethnologically, the most characteristic Slovene dishes were one-pot dishes, such as ''ričet'', Istrian stew (), minestrone (), and ''žganci ''buckwheat spoonbread; in the
Prekmurje Prekmurje (; dialectically: ''Prèkmürsko'' or ''Prèkmüre''; hu, Muravidék) is a geographically, linguistically, culturally and ethnically defined region of Slovenia, settled by Slovenes and a Hungarian minority, lying between the Mur R ...
region there is also ''bujta repa'', and ''prekmurska gibanica'' pastry. Prosciutto () is a delicacy of the
Slovene Littoral The Slovene Littoral ( sl, Primorska, ; it, Litorale; german: Küstenland) is one of the five traditional regions of Slovenia. Its name recalls the former Austrian Littoral (''Avstrijsko Primorje''), the Habsburg possessions on the upper Adri ...
. The nut roll () has become a symbol of Slovenia, especially among the American Slovenes, Slovene diaspora in the United States. Soups were added to the traditional one-pot meals and various kinds of porridge and stew only in relatively recent history. Each year since 2000, the Roasted Potato Festival has been organized by the ''Society for the Recognition of Roasted Potatoes as a Distinct Dish'', attracting thousands of visitors. Roasted potatoes, which have been traditionally served in most Slovenian families only on Sundays—preceded by a meat-based soup, such as beef or chicken soup—have been depicted on a special edition of post marks by the Post of Slovenia on 23 November 2012. The best known sausage is ''kranjska klobasa''. Slovenia is also the home of the world's old vine, oldest vine, which is 400 years old. Slovenia has been awarded the European Region of Gastronomy title for the year 2021.


Dance

Historically the most notable Slovenian ballet dancers and choreographers were Pino Mlakar (1907‒2006), who in 1927 graduated from the Rudolf von Laban, Rudolf Laban Choreographic Institute, and there met his future wife, balerina Pia Mlakar, Maria Luiza Pia Beatrice Scholz (1908‒2000). Together they worked as a leading dancer and a choreographer in Dessau (1930–1932), Zürich (1934–1938), and State opera in München (1939‒1944).Pia and Pino Mlakar
, The Slovenian National Theatre Opera and Ballet Ljubljana website
Their plan to build a Slovenian dance centre at Rožnik Hill after the World War II was supported by the minister of culture, Ferdo Kozak, but was cancelled by his successor. Pino Mlakar was also a full professor at the Academy for Theatre, Radio, Film and Television (AGRFT) of the University of Ljubljana. Between 1952 in 1954 they again led State opera ballet in Munich. A Mary Wigman modern dance school was founded in the 1930s by her student, Meta Vidmar, in Ljubljana.


Festivals, book fairs, and other events

A number of music, theater, film, book, and children's festivals take place in Slovenia each year, including the music festivals Ljubljana Summer Festival and Lent Festival, the stand-up comedy Punch Festival, the children's Pippi Longstocking Festival, and the book festivals Slovene book fair and Frankfurt after the Frankfurt. The most notable music festival of Slovene music was historically the Slovenska popevka festival. Between 1981 and 2000 the Novi Rock festival was notable for bringing rock music across Iron curtain from the West to the Slovenian and then Yugoslav audience. The long tradition of jazz festivals in Titoist Yugoslavia began with the Ljubljana Jazz Festival which has been held annually in Slovenia since 1960.


Film

Slovene film actors and actresses historically include Ida Kravanja, who played her roles as ''Ita Rina'' in the early European films, and Metka Bučar. After the WW II, one of the most notable film actors was Polde Bibič, who played a number of roles in many films that were well received in Slovenia, including ''Don't Cry, Peter'' (1964), ''On Wings of Paper'' (1968), ''Kekec's Tricks'' (1968), ''Flowers in Autumn'' (1973), ''The Widowhood of Karolina Žašler'' (1976), ''Dediščina, Heritage'' (1986), ''Primož Trubar (film), Primož Trubar'' (1985), and ''My Dad, The Socialist Kulak'' (1987). Many of these were directed by Matjaž Klopčič. He also performed in television and radio drama. Altogether, Bibič played over 150 theatre and over 30 film roles. Feature film and short film production in Slovenia historically includes Karol Grossmann, František Čap, France Štiglic, Igor Pretnar, Jože Pogačnik, Peter Zobec, Matjaž Klopčič, Boštjan Hladnik, Dušan Jovanović (theatre director), Dušan Jovanović, Vitan Mal, Franci Slak, and Karpo Godina as its most established filmmakers. Contemporary film directors Filip Robar - Dorin, Jan Cvitkovič, Damjan Kozole, Janez Lapajne, Mitja Okorn, and Marko Naberšnik are among the representatives of the so-called "Renaissance of Slovenian cinema". Slovene screenwriters, who are not film directors, include Saša Vuga and Miha Mazzini. Women film directors include Polona Sepe, Hanna A. W. Slak, and Maja Weiss.


Literature


Authors

Today, notable authors include Slavoj Žižek, Mladen Dolar, Alenka Zupančič as well as Boris Pahor, a German Nazi concentration camp survivor, who opposed Italian Fascism and Titoist Communism.


Literary history

History of Slovene literature began in the 16th century with Primož Trubar and Protestant Reformation in the Slovene Lands, other Protestant Reformers. Poetry in Slovene achieved its highest level with the Romantic poetry, Romantic poet France Prešeren (1800–1849). In the 20th century, the Slovene literary fiction went through several periods: the beginning of the century was marked by the authors of the Slovene Modernism, with the most influential Slovene writer and playwright, Ivan Cankar; it was then followed by expressionism (Srečko Kosovel), avantgardism (Anton Podbevšek, Ferdo Delak) and social realism (Ciril Kosmač, Prežihov Voranc) before World War II, the poetry of resistance and revolution (Karel Destovnik Kajuh, Matej Bor) during the war, and intimism (Slovene poetry), intimism (Poems of the Four, 1953), Slovenian post-war modernism, post-war modernism (Edvard Kocbek), and existentialism (Dane Zajc) after the war. Postmodernism, Postmodernist authors include Boris A. Novak, Marko Kravos, Drago Jančar, Evald Flisar, Tomaž Šalamun, and Brina Svit. Among the post-1990 authors best known are Aleš Debeljak, Miha Mazzini, and Alojz Ihan. There are several literary magazines that publish Slovene prose, poetry, essays, and local literary criticism.


Music

The Slovenian Philharmonics, established in 1701 as part of Academia operosorum Labacensis, is among the oldest such institutions in Europe. Music of Slovenia historically includes numerous musicians and composers, such as the Renaissance composer Jacobus Gallus (1550–1591), who greatly influenced Central European classical music, the Baroque composer Joannes Baptista Dolar (ca. 1620–1673), and the violin virtuoso Giuseppe Tartini. During the medieval era, secular music was as popular as church music, including wandering minnesingers. By the time of Protestant Reformation in the 16th century, music was used to proselytize. The first Slovenian hymnal, ''Eni Psalmi'', was published in 1567. This period saw the rise of musicians like Jacobus Gallus and Jurij Slatkonja. In 1701, Johann Berthold von Höffer (1667–1718), a nobleman and amateur composer from Ljubljana, founded the Slovenian Philharmonics, Academia Philharmonicorum Labacensis, as one of the oldest such institutions in Europe, based on Italian models. Composers of Slovenian Lieder and art songs include Emil Adamič (1877–1936), Fran Gerbič (1840–1917), Alojz Geržinič (1915–2008), Benjamin Ipavec (1829–1908), Davorin Jenko (1835–1914), Anton Lajovic (1878–1960), Kamilo Mašek (1831–1859), Josip Pavčič (1870–1949), Zorko Prelovec (1887–1939), and Lucijan Marija Škerjanc (1900–1973). In the early 20th century, impressionism was spreading across Slovenia, which soon produced composers Marij Kogoj and Slavko Osterc. Avant-garde european classical music, classical music arose in Slovenia in the 1960s, largely due to the work of Uroš Krek, Dane Skerl, Dane Škerl, Primoz Ramovs, Primož Ramovš and Ivo Petric, Ivo Petrić, who also conducted the Slavko Osterc Ensemble. Jakob Jez, Jakob Jež, Darijan Božič, Lojze Lebic, Lojze Lebič and Vinko Globokar have since composed enduring works, especially Globokar's ''L'Armonia (opera), L'Armonia'', an opera. Modern composers include Uros Rojko, Uroš Rojko, Tomaz Svete, Tomaž Svete, Brina Jez-Brezavscek, Brina Jež-Brezavšček, Božidar Kantušer and Aldo Kumar. Kumar's ''Sonata z igro 12'' (''A sonata with a play 12''), a set of variations on a rising chromatic scale, is particularly notable. The Slovene National Opera and Ballet Theatre serves as the national opera and ballet house.


Traditional folk music

Harmony singing is a deep rooted tradition in Slovenia, and is at least three-part singing (four voices), while in some regions even up to eight-part singing (nine voices). Slovenian folk songs, thus, usually resounds soft and harmonious, and are very seldom in minor. Traditional Slovenian folk music is performed on Styrian harmonica (the oldest type of accordion), fiddle, clarinet, zithers, flute, and by brass bands of alpine type. In Prekmurje, eastern Slovenia, fiddle and cimbalon bands are called velike goslarije.


Modern folk (Slovenian country) music

From 1952 on, the Slavko Avsenik's band began to appear in broadcasts, movies, and concerts all over the West Germany, inventing the original "Gorenjska, Oberkrainer" country sound that has become the primary vehicle of ethnic musical expression not only in Slovenia, but also in Germany,
Austria Austria, , bar, Östareich officially the Republic of Austria, is a country in the southern part of Central Europe, lying in the Eastern Alps. It is a federation of nine states, one of which is the capital, Vienna, the most populous ...
, Switzerland, and in the
Benelux The Benelux Union ( nl, Benelux Unie; french: Union Benelux; lb, Benelux-Unioun), also known as simply Benelux, is a politico-economic union and formal international intergovernmental cooperation of three neighboring states in western Europe: B ...
, spawning hundreds of Alps, Alpine orchestras in the process. The band produced nearly 1000 original compositions, an integral part of the Slovenian-style polka legacy. Many musicians followed Avsenik's steps, including Lojze Slak.


Slovenska popevka

A similarly high standing in Slovene culture, like the Sanremo Music Festival has had in Italian culture, was attributed to the Slovenska popevka, a specific genre of popular Slovene music.


Popular music

Among pop, rock, industrial, and indie musicians the most popular in Slovenia include industrial music group Laibach (band), Laibach, as well as Siddharta (band), Siddharta, a rock band formed in 1995. With more than 15 million views for the official a cappella "Africa (Toto song), Africa" performance video since its publishing on YouTube in May 2009 until September 2013. Retrieved 9 September 2013. that earned them kudos from the song's co-writer, David Paich, Perpetuum Jazzile is the group from Slovenia that is internationally most listened online. Other Slovenian bands include a historically progressive rock ones that were also popular in Titoist Yugoslavia, such as Buldožer and Lačni Franz, which inspired later comedy rock bands including Zmelkoow, Slon in Sadež and Mi2 (rock band), Mi2. With exception of Terrafolk that made appearances worldwide, other bands, such as Avtomobili, Zaklonišče Prepeva, Šank Rock, Big Foot Mama, Dan D, and Zablujena generacija, are mostly unknown outside the country. Slovenian metal bands include Noctiferia (death metal), Negligence (band), Negligence (thrash metal), Naio Ssaion (gothic metal), and Within Destruction (deathcore).


Singer-songwriters

Slovenian post-WWII singer-songwriters include Frane Milčinski (1914–1988), Tomaž Pengov whose 1973 album ''Odpotovanja'' is considered to be the first singer-songwriter album in former Yugoslavia, Tomaž Domicelj, Marko Brecelj, Andrej Šifrer, Eva Sršen, Neca Falk, and Jani Kovačič. After 1990, Adi Smolar, Iztok Mlakar, Vita Mavrič, Vlado Kreslin, Zoran Predin, Peter Lovšin, and Magnifico (musician), Magnifico have been popular in Slovenia, as well. In the 21st century, there have been many successful artists from Slovenia. They include country musician ManuElla, Manu, Eurovision Song Contest, Eurovision finalists zalagasper, Nika Zorjan, Omar Naber and Raiven.


Theatre

In addition to the main houses, which include Slovene National Theatre, Ljubljana and Maribor National Drama Theatre, a number of small producers are active in Slovenia, including physical theatre (e.g. Betontanc), street theatre (e.g. Ana Monró Theatre), theatresports championship Impro League, and improvisational theatre (e.g. IGLU Theatre). A popular form is puppetry, mainly performed in the Ljubljana Puppet Theatre. Theater has a rich tradition in Slovenia, starting with the 1867 first ever Slovene-language drama performance.


Visual arts, architecture and design

Slovenia's visual arts, architecture, and design are shaped by a number of architects, designers, painters, sculptors, photographers, graphics artists, as well as comics, illustration and conceptual artists. Two significant prestigious institutions exhibiting works of Slovene visual artists are the National Gallery of Slovenia and the Museum of Modern Art, Ljubljana, Museum of Modern Art. ;Architecture Modern architecture in Slovenia was introduced by Max Fabiani, and in the mid-war period,
Jože Plečnik Jože Plečnik () (23 January 1872 – 7 January 1957) was a Slovene architect who had a major impact on the modern architecture of Vienna, Prague and of Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia, most notably by designing the iconic Triple Bridge an ...
and Ivan Vurnik. In the second half of the 20th century, the national and universal style were merged by the architects Edvard Ravnikar and first generation of his students: Milan Mihelič, Stanko Kristl, Savin Sever. Next generation is mainly still active Marko Mušič, Vojteh Ravnikar, Jurij Kobe and groups of younger architects. Selected works of Jože Plečnik which shaped Ljubljana during the inter-war period were inscribed on UNESCO's list of World Heritage Sites in 2021. ;Conceptual art A number of conceptual art, conceptual visual art groups formed, including OHO (art group), OHO, Group 69, and IRWIN. Nowadays, the Slovene visual arts are diverse, based on tradition, reflect the influence of neighboring nations and are intertwined with modern European movements. ;Design Internationally most notable Slovenian design items include the 1952 Rex (chair), Rex chair, a Scandinavian design-inspired wooden chair, by interior designer Niko Kralj that was given in 2012 a permanent place in Designmuseum, Denmark, the largest museum of design in Scandinavia, and is included in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art, New York, Museum of Modern Art MOMA in New York City, as well. An industrial design item that has changed the international ski industry is Elan SCX by Elan (company), Elan company. Even before the Elan SCX, Elan skis were depicted in two films, the 1985 James Bond film series part A View to a Kill with Roger Moore, and Working Girl where ''Katharine Parker'' (Sigourney Weaver) was depicted as skiing on the ''RC ELAN'' model skis and poles. ;Sculpture The renewal of Slovene sculpture begun with Alojz Gangl (1859–1935) who created sculptures for the public monuments of the
Carniola Carniola ( sl, Kranjska; , german: Krain; it, Carniola; hu, Krajna) is a historical region that comprised parts of present-day Slovenia. Although as a whole it does not exist anymore, Slovenes living within the former borders of the region sti ...
n polymath Johann Weikhard von Valvasor and Valentin Vodnik, the first Slovene poet and journalist, as well as ''The Genius of the Theatre'' and other statues for the Slovenian National Opera and Ballet Theatre building. The development of sculpture after World War II was led by a number of artists, including brothers Boris Kalin, Boris and Zdenko Kalin, Jakob Savinšek stayed with figural art. Younger sculptors, for example Janez Boljka, Drago Tršar and particularly Slavko Tihec, moved towards abstract sculpture, abstract forms. Jakov Brdar and Mirsad Begić returned to human figures. ;Graphics During World War II, numerous graphics were created by Božidar Jakac, who helped establish the post-war Academy of Visual Arts and Design, Ljubljana, Academy of Visual Arts in Ljubljana. In 1917 Hinko Smrekar illustrated Fran Levstik's book about the well-known Slovene folk hero Martin Krpan. The children's books illustrators include a number of women illustrators, such as Marlenka Stupica, Marija Lucija Stupica, Ančka Gošnik Godec, Marjanca Jemec Božič, and Jelka Reichman. ;Painting Historically, painting and sculpture in Slovenia was in the late 18th and the 19th century marked by Neoclassicism (Matevž Langus), Biedermeier#Visual arts, Biedermeier (Giuseppe Tominz) and Romantic visual arts, Romanticism (Michael Stroy). The first art exhibition in Slovenia was organized in the late 19th century by Ivana Kobilca, a woman-painter who worked in Naturalism (visual art), realistic tradition. impressionism (arts), Impressionist artists include Matej Sternen, Matija Jama, Rihard Jakopič, Ivan Grohar whose ''The Sower'' (Slovene: Sejalec) was depicted on the €0.05 Slovenian euro coins, and Franc Berneker, who introduced the impressionism to Slovenia. Expressionism, Espressionist painters include Veno Pilon and Tone Kralj whose picture book, reprinted thirteen times, is now the most recognisable image of the folk hero Martin Krpan. Some of the best known painters in the second half of the 20th century were Zoran Mušič, Gabrijel Stupica and Marij Pregelj. ;Photography In 1841, Janez Puhar (1814–1864) invented a process for photography on glass, recognized on 17 June 1852 in Paris by the Académie Nationale Agricole, Manufacturière et Commerciale. Gojmir Anton Kos was a notable Realism (arts), realist painter and photographer between First World War and WW II. The first photographer from Slovenia whose work was published by ''National Geographic (magazine), National Geographic'' magazine is Arne Hodalič.


Sports

Slovenia is a natural sports venue, with many Slovenians actively practicing sports. A variety of sports are played in Slovenia on a professional level, with top international successes in team handball, handball, basketball, volleyball, association football, ice hockey, rowing (sport), rowing, swimming, tennis, boxing, climbing, road cycling and athletics (sport), athletics. Prior to World War II, gymnastics and fencing used to be the most popular sports in Slovenia, with athletes like Leon Štukelj and Miroslav Cerar gaining gold Olympic medals. Association football gained popularity in the interwar period. After 1945, basketball, handball and volleyball have become popular among Slovenians, and from the mid-1970s onward, winter sports have, as well. Since 1992, Slovenian sportspeople have won Slovenia at the Olympics, 52 Olympic medals, including twelve gold medals, and Slovenia at the Paralympics, 24 Paralympic medals with four golds. Individual sports are also very popular in Slovenia, including tennis and mountaineering, which are two of the most widespread sporting activities in Slovenia. Several Slovenian extreme sport, extreme and endurance sportsmen have gained an international reputation, including the mountaineer Tomaž Humar, the mountain skier Davo Karničar, the ultramarathon swimmer Martin Strel and the ultracyclist Jure Robič. Past and current winter sports athletes include Alpine skiing, alpine skiers, such as Mateja Svet, Bojan Križaj, Ilka Štuhec and double Olympic gold medalist Tina Maze, the cross-country skiing (sport), cross-country skier Petra Majdič, and Ski jumping, ski jumpers, such as Primož Peterka and Peter Prevc. Boxing has gained popularity since Jan Zaveck won the International Boxing Federation, IBF List of welterweight boxing champions, Welterweight World Champion title in 2009. In cycling, Primož Roglič became the first Slovenian to win a Grand Tour (cycling), Grand Tour when he won the 2019 Vuelta a España. In 2020, Tadej Pogačar won the Tour de France, the world's most competitive cycling race, while Primož Roglič finished second. Prominent team sports in Slovenia include football, basketball, handball, volleyball, and ice hockey. The Slovenia national football team, men's national football team has qualified for one UEFA European Football Championship, European Championship (2000) and two FIFA World Cup, World Cups (2002 and 2010). Of Slovenian clubs, NK Maribor played three times in the group stages of the UEFA Champions League. The Slovenian national basketball team, men's national basketball team has participated at 14 EuroBaskets, winning the gold medal in the 2017 edition, and at three FIBA World Championships. Slovenia also hosted the EuroBasket 2013. The Slovenia men's national handball team, men's national handball team has qualified for three Olympics, nine IHF IHF World Men's Handball Championship, World Championships, including their third-place finish in 2017, and thirteen European Men's Handball Championship, European Championships. Slovenia was the hosts of the 2004 European Men's Handball Championship, 2004 European Championship, where the national team won the silver medal. Slovenia's most prominent handball team, RK Celje, won the EHF Champions League in the 2003–04 season. In women's handball, RK Krim won the Women's EHF Champions League, Champions League in 2001 and 2003. The Slovenia men's national volleyball team, men's national volleyball team has won three silver medals at the Men's European Volleyball Championship, European Volleyball Championship (2015, 2019 and 2021), and finished fourth at the 2022 FIVB Volleyball Men's World Championship, 2022 World Championship. The Slovenia men's national ice hockey team, national ice hockey team has played at 28 Ice Hockey World Championships (with 9 appearances in top division), and has participated in the 2014 and 2018 Winter Olympic Games.


See also

* Outline of Slovenia * Slovenia (European Parliament constituency)


References


Further reading

* Perko, Drago, Ciglic, Rok, Zorn, Matija (eds.), ''The Geography of Slovenia: Small But Diverse'' (Cham, Springer, 2020). * Stanić, Stane, ''Slovenia'' (London, Flint River Press, 1994). * Oto Luthar (ed.), ''The Land Between: A History of Slovenia. With contributions by Oto Luthar, Igor Grdina, Marjeta Šašel Kos, Petra Svoljšak, Peter Kos, Dušan Kos, Peter Štih, Alja Brglez and Martin Pogačar'' (Frankfurt am Main etc., Peter Lang, 2008). * ''The World Book Encyclopedia of People and Places, O–S Oman to Syria'' (Chicago, World Book, 2011).


External links


Slovenia
from ''UCB Libraries GovPubs'' * *
"Facts About Slovenia"
publication from the Slovenian Government Communication Office. pdf. In English, Spanish, French, German and Russian.
Slovenia – Landmarks
Virtual reality panoramas of various spots in the country.
Slovenia: a geographical overview
Association of the Geographical Societies of Slovenia. ;Government
Slovenia.si
The main national access point to information about Slovenia.
The Republic of Slovenia
Official institutions.
Statistical Office of the Republic of SloveniaNational Meteorological Service of Slovenia
;Travel
The Slovenian Tourist portal
Slovenian Tourist Board. * {{Authority control Slovenia, Central European countries Balkan countries Member states of NATO Member states of the European Union Member states of the Union for the Mediterranean Member states of the United Nations Member states of the Three Seas Initiative Republics Southern European countries States and territories established in 1991 1991 establishments in Europe Countries in Europe