Berken is a municipality in the Oberaargau the canton of Bern in Switzerland.


Berken is located 420 meters above sea level. Level, 6 km west of the city Langenthal ( straight line ). The farming village extends into the Talniederung the Aare River south of the river, in the Upper Aargau.

The area of ​​1.4 km ² large municipality area includes a portion of the northern Bernese Mittelland. The northern boundary of the municipality is the Aare, which has been excavated in the course of time a 30 m deep valley in the gravel plain. From the Aare River, the municipality spell extends southward over the lower terrace ( about 420 m above sea level. M. ) on the clearly demarcated high terrace (about 445 m above sea level. M. ). The upper terrace is divided by the little valley of Seebach, the effluent from the Inkwilersee. The south-western part of the municipality is occupied by the extensive Berkerwald, in the 458 m above sea level. M. the highest point of Berken is achieved. From the municipality surface 1997 11 % came from settlements, 31 % of forest and shrubs, 52 % to agriculture and a little less than 6 % was unproductive land.

Berken consists of the hamlet settlements Unterberken (420 m above sea level. M. ) and Christenhof (430 m above sea level. M. ) in the south of the Aare Talniederung and Oberberken (446 m above sea level. M. ) on the high terrace to the west of Seebachtälchens. Neighboring communities of Berken are digging, Heimenhausen, Walliswil bei Wangen, Walliswil at Niederbipp and Bannwil.


With 42 inhabitants ( 31 December 2012) Berken is one of the smallest municipalities in the canton of Bern. Of the residents gave in to 2000 100 % German as their mother tongue. The population of Berken amounted in 1850 to 77 inhabitants in 1900 to 114 inhabitants. During the 20th century, the population increased by strong migration by more than 50%.


Berken was until the second half of the 20th century, mainly coined by farming village. Even today, agriculture and dairy farming, and forestry an important place in the economic structure of the population. More jobs are in small local manufacturing and services available. East of Oberberken a gravel pit is exploited. Some of the working population commuters who work mainly in the region Langenthal - Herzogenbuchsee.


The community is located off of the larger passage axes at a connecting road from Wangen an der Aare to Langenthal. Berken also has a Aareübergang. The nearest links to the A1 ( Bern- Zurich ) is located about 5 km from the center. The village has no connection to the public transport network.


One finds from the Mesolithic and Neolithic occupy a very early settlement of the municipality. The first written mention of the village was carried out in 1272 under the name Berinkon and Berinchoven. Later, the names Berikofen ( 1358 ), Beronkon ( 1359 ), Berikon ( 1365 ), Bercken ( 1432 ) and Berigken ( 1557) appeared. The name goes back to the Old High German personal name Bero. With a name ending in -ing (actually a drawing together of - igkofen ), which is typical of founded in the 7th and 8th century Alemannic settlements, he means so much as in the courts of the people of Bero, where so-called relocated farms are meant.

Since the Middle Ages Berken was under the rule Aarwangen. After the family of the lords of Aarwangen was extinct, reached the village in 1341 to the barons of Green Mountain ( Melchnau ), also a service man narrowness bad the Habsburgs. By buying Berken came in 1432 under Bernese rule and the bailiwick Aarwangen been assigned. After the collapse of the Ancien Régime (1798 ) Berken was during the Helvetic Republic to the district from 1803 to the cheeks and upper cheeks Office, which received the status of an office district with the new cantonal constitution of 1831. Berken does not own a house of God, it belongs to the parish Herzogenbuchsee.