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Catastral area: Jasov
Districť: Ko
Region: Ko

It is situated in the Medzevská Upland at its joint with the east margin of the Jasovská Plateau in the Slovak Karst, at the west boundary of Jasov. It is located in the National Nature Reserve Jasovské dubiny in the territory of the Protected Landscape Area and Biospheric Reserve of the Slovak Karst. The entrance to the cave is at the eastern foothill of Jasovský Rock, 257 m above the sea level. It was formed in the Middle Triassic Gutenstein dolomites, Steinalm lime stones and dolomites of the Silický nape along tectonic faults, by the former underground waters of Bodva River, at five developmental levels.

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It reaches the length of 2,122 meters, with vertical range 55 m.
Rich sinter filling is represented by pagoda‑like stalagmites, stalagnates, shields, drums, straw stalactites, and other forms.
The lowest parts of the cave are often flooded as a result of vertical movements of underground water. The lowest water level of the cave lake is 7 m below the surface flow of Bodva, the waters of which are not flowing through the cave at present.

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Bones of cave bear (Ursus spelaeus) and cave hyaena (Crocuta spelaea) belong to palaeontological findings discovered here. 17 species of bats have been found in the cave with dominating Rhinolophus ferrumequinum and Rhinolophus hipposideros. The cave is one of the most important winter refuges of these species in Slovakia.
It was inhabited by man in the Neolithic Era (“bukovohorská” culture), Bronze Age, Hallstatt and Roman Era. Sporadic findings indicate also a possible short‑term Palaeolithic settlement.

The cave was most probably discovered by some of the monks of the nearby Premonstrate Monastery. Its existence was documented already in the second half of the 12th century. The oldest inscription dates back to 1452. Many wall inscriptions of 1571, 1619, 1654, 1655, 1657, 1783, etc. refer to events that had taken place in Jasov and its surroundings. It is publicly accessible since 1846. After reconstruction it was reopened for the public in 1924.
It serves for speleotherapeutical procedures since 1995. Currently, 550 m of the cave are open to the public.

I visited the Jasovská Cave in summer of 2003 and was fascinated by its beauty. The manager arranged for me a private showing for which I am thankful to him.

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Published in the Slovak Heritage Live newsletter Volume 11, No.4, Winter 2003
Copyright © Vladimir Linder 2004
3804 Yale Street, Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada V5C 1P6
The above article and photographs may not be copied, reproduced, republished, or redistributed by any means including electronic, without the express written permission of
Vladimir Linder. All rights reserved.