Cave Church Kadjenica

Smoke Cave


Useful Information

Location: In the village of Dljina near Cacak on the right bank of the Zapadna Morava, 1km upstream from Ovcar Banja
Open: no restrictions.
[2020]
Fee: free.
[2020]
Classification: SubterraneaCave Church
Light: bring torch
Dimension:  
Guided tours:  
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: no
Bibliography:  
Address: Cave Church Kadjenica, Tel: +381-, Fax: +381-,
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
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History

1814 during the Hadzi Prodan's revolt people found refuge in the cave and killed by the Turks with smoke.
1936 remains were retrieved, fully cremated and buried in two stone sarcophaguses.

Description

The natural cave is called Kadjenica or Smoke Cave, because of an event which happened in 1814 during the Hadzi Prodan's revolt. Hundreds of Serbian fighters confronted the Ottoman oppressors. More than 100 people who were unable to fight, mostly women with children and elderly, were hiding in the cave but were discovered by the Turks. They used straw and wood to light a fire in front of the cave and everyone inside suffocated.

Quite strange is the fact that the remains of the victims were left untouched for more than 120 years. In 1936 Bishop Nikolaj Velimirovic encouraged the locals to visit the cave and bury the remains. The remains were finally retrieved, fully cremated and buried in two stone sarcophaguses. The cave was turned into a church by installing an altar. The local authorities cleared the path to the cave and set up a 50m high cross at the entrance. It marks the place and make it recognizable from far away.