Borut Juvanec (Maj Juvanec pour les photographies), Kozolec,

Ljubljana, Fakulteta za arhitekturo, 2007


French version          Bilingual French-English version

Professor Juavec, whose research on dry stone huts in Europe our readers are quite familiar with, has revisited his initial subject from the 1985-1995 decade: the structure formerly used for drying hay in Slovenia and going under the name of kozolec (pl. kozolci) in the country's language. Hence the title of his recently released book

As Slovene is not our forte, we will refrain from trying to give an actual review of the book. Instead, in order for our visitors to grasp the diversity of the devices and structures encountered, we include herewith drawings of the various types of kozolec still extant, from the single line of posts under a two-sided coping to the nave with a double line of posts under a hipped or half-hipped roof.

The single-row structure is already present in the second half of the 17th century as evidenced by the astonishing print down below. The roofed structure raised on a double row of posts is a more recent development originating in the 19th century and lasting into the early 20th century. It belongs to the larger family of raised granaries of the Alpine and Pyrenean regions.

A 1660-1670 bird's eye view of a village and farms showing as many as seven kozolci of the single-row type, with the shortest ones numbering four posts (ie eight panels); some kozolci are braced by side props, others do without them.


A late 18th-century engraving showing the stacking of hay on the horizontal wooden laths of a kozolec consisting of a single row of posts, side props and end brace, all under a pitched coping.

Because of its universality, the kozolec under its various guises and names is viewed by Slovenes as an icon of their nation and country. Indeed, in its most advanced form, called the toplar, in which the single row turns into a nave, the panel into a bay and the coping into roofing, the kozolec harks back to a golden age of large cattle farms whose production required a real barn and not just hayracks.

Row of three posts with lean-to on two half-posts opposite one panel.

Two parallel rows of four posts each, linked by spacers.

Row of three posts with lean-to on three half-posts.

Nave with two rows of three posts each.


Nave with two rows of three posts each, with a two-sided roof and a straight front gable.

Nave with two rows of three posts each, with a two-sided roof and jerkinheads, and a front gable gallery.

The toplar allowed drying, threshing, and storing of agricultural implements in its open ground section while produce was stored in the openwork upper section and in the loft. In its most impressive specimens, it reflects the economic wealth of its building owner.

Borut Juvanec's new book contains a number of helpful abstracts in various European languages. Additional information on Slovenian hayracks can be found in the author's own Internet site dedicated to "Slovene Architecture" (


Author's address :
Borut Juvanec, Faculty of Architecture, Ljubljana University, Zoisova 12 - 61000 Ljubljana, Slovenia (email: borut.juvanec[at]

To print, use the landscape mode

April 8th, 2007

To be referenced as:

Christian Lassure
review of Borut Juvanec's Kozolec ; [fotografije Borut Juvanec, Maj Juvanec; predgovor Janez Bogataj]. - I. nais. - Ljubljana : i2 : Fakulteta za arhitekturo, 2007, ISBN 978-961-6348-36-2 (i2)
April 8th, 2007

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