Zemlyanka (Russian or Ukrainian: Землянка) — is an Eastern Slavic name for a dugout or earth-house which was used to provide shelter for humans or domestic animals. Based on a hole or depression dug into the ground, these structures are one of the most ancient types of housing known. Zemlyankas can be partially or fully recessed into the earth, with a flat roof covered with branches or sod, or dug into a hillside. The use of natural earth for insulation and protection for underground living has evolved into the "earth shelter" technology used today in architecture.

World War II Edit

Zemljamka nedaleko Nýrova

Zemlyanka used by partisans near Nýrov, Czech Republic, preserved as a WWII memorial

In World War II, partisans, or armed resistance fighters in Eastern Europe sometimes lived in zemlyankas which were used as underground bunkers to provide shelter and a hiding place from enemies.[1] In Poland they were called ziemianki.

See also Edit


  1. Virtual Zemlyanka Jewish Partisan Educational Foundation
This page uses Creative Commons CC-BY-SA licensed content from Zemlyanka on Wikipedia (view authors).

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