Churches in Sabinov
Country Slovakia
Region Prešov
District Sabinov
River Torysa
Elevation 324 m (1,063 ft)
Coordinates 49°06′22″N 21°05′08″E / 49.10611°N 21.08556°E / 49.10611; 21.08556Coordinates: 49°06′22″N 21°05′08″E / 49.10611°N 21.08556°E / 49.10611; 21.08556
Area 23.392 km2 (9.032 sq mi)
Population 12,378 (2005-12-31)
Density 529/km2 (1,370/sq mi)
First mentioned 1248
Mayor Peter Molčan
Timezone CET (UTC+1)
 - summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code 083 01
Area code +421-51
Car plate SB
Location of Sabinov in Slovakia
Location of Sabinov in the Prešov Region
Wikimedia Commons: Sabinov
Statistics: MOŠ/MIS

Sabinov (Hungarian: Kisszeben, German: Zeben, Latin: Cibinium) is a small town located in the Prešov Region (north-eastern Slovakia), approximately 20 km from Prešov and 55 km from Košice. The population of Sabinov is 12,717.


The name is probably derived from a personal name, e.g. Slavic Soběslav - Soba, Sobin, Sobina. Similar names - Zob, Zoba, Zobas were used in the Kingdom of Hungary in the 12th-13th century, but they could be also the original Hungarian names. The theory about a derivation from the personal name is supported also by the common Slavic possessive suffix -ov preserved in later documents. The placenames of the same origin are known from the territory of present-day Czech Republic and Poland (Sobyenow, Sobíňov, Soběnov, Sobnyow).[1]


The first written record about Sabinov is from the year 1248 (Sceben).[2] Sabinov was initially a Slovak village[3] until German settlers came in the middle of the 13th century.[3] In 1299 Sabinov received municipal privileges, and in 1405 it was declared a free royal town by king Sigismund, Holy Roman Emperor. In the 15th century Sabinov joined the Pentapolitana, an alliance of five towns of northeastern Kingdom of Hungary (Bardejov/Bartfa, Levoča/Locse, Košice/Kassa, Prešov /Eperjes and Sabinov).[4] The 16th and 17th century was the era of Sabinov's development and economic growth followed by the years of recession. In 1740, an important secondary school was established by the Piarists. The history of Sabinov is very similar to the history of other towns in this region.


According to the 1880 census, the town had 2,825 inhabitants, 2,088 Slovaks (73.9%), 245 Hungarians (8.7%), 412 Germans (14.6%) and others.[5]

According to the 1910 census, the town had 3,288 inhabitants, 1,640 Slovaks (49.9%), 1,168 Hungarians (35.5%), 341 Germans (10.4%), 120 Romanians (3.6%) and others.[6]

According to the 2001 census, the town had 12,290 inhabitants. 90.62% of inhabitants were Slovaks, 6.40% Roma, 0.48% Czechs and 0.14% Rusyns. Most of the Hungarians were expelled after World War II and their houses confiscated in the "slovakization" of Sabinov.[7] The religious makeup was 70.48% Roman Catholics, 10.53% Greek Catholics, 5.14% people with no religious affiliation and 4.16% Lutherans.[7]

The Shop on Main Street

The acclaimed Czechoslovak film, The Shop on Main Street, which was shot in Sabinov during 1964, was awarded the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film (of 1965) in Hollywood in 1966. In 1967 the film's lead actress, Ida Kaminska, was nominated for the Best Actress in a Leading Role for her screen work in this motion picture. She and the lead actor, Jozef Kroner, were also honored at the Cannes Film Festival in France for their roles in the film.

Famous people

The most important people who lived in Sabinov are:


  1. Štefánik, Martin; Lukačka, Ján, eds. (2010). Lexikón stredovekých miest na Slovensku [Lexicon of Medieval Towns in Slovakia] (PDF) (in Slovak and English). Bratislava: Historický ústav SAV. p. 404. ISBN 978-80-89396-11-5.
  2. Štefánik & Lukačka 2010, p. 404.
  3. 1 2 Štefánik & Lukačka 2010, p. 410.
  4. Štefánik & Lukačka 2010, p. 409.
  5. Majo, Juraj (2012). Historicko-demografický lexikón obcí Slovenska 1880—1910. Bratislava: Štatistický úrad Slovenskej republiky. p. 122. ISBN 978-80-8121-222-2.
  6. Majo 2012, p. 830.
  7. 1 2 "Municipal Statistics". Statistical Office of the Slovak republic. Archived from the original on 2007-11-16. Retrieved 2007-12-15.
See also: Szeben
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