Location of Berriz within the Basque Country
|Coordinates: 43°10′33″N 2°34′32″W / 43.17583°N 2.57556°W|
|Autonomous community||Basque Country|
|• Mayor||Jose Jabier Azpitarte Ariño|
|• Total||30.07 km2 (11.61 sq mi)|
|Elevation||192 m (630 ft)|
|• Density||160/km2 (420/sq mi)|
|Time zone||CET (UTC+1)|
|• Summer (DST)||CEST (UTC+2)|
Berriz (in Basque and officially, in Spanish: Bérriz) is an elizate, town and municipality located in the province of Biscay, in the Basque Country, northern Spain. Berriz is part of the comarca of Durangaldea and has a population of 4.759 inhabitants as of 2007 and according to the Spanish National Statistics Institute.
Berriz belongs to a series of Basque toponyms with an -iz ending. Julio Caro Baroja defended that most of these toponyms came from an original Basque toponym plus the Latin suffix -icus. Caro Baroja considered that on toponymy, the suffixes -oz, -ez and -iz used to be combined with the name of the owner of the lands, with its origin being in some place between the Middle Ages and the Roman Empire.
In the case of Berriz, Caro Baroja suggested that the name might come from Verrius, the documented Latin name. Then, to the name Verrius it was added the suffix -icus (indicating that the lands were owned by Verrius) and became Verricus From then, the name evolved to Verrici and from there to Verriz. The name of the town in Spanish used to be Vérriz.
Another theory about is origin negates the Latin origin and proposes a Basque origin. Berriz might come from Be(h)e ("under") and Oiz in reference to the Oiz mountain, and then "under Oiz" as of "in the or at the bottom of Oiz".
- Bérriz in the Bernardo Estornés Lasa - Auñamendi Encyclopedia (Euskomedia Fundazioa) (Spanish)
- Bérriz Town Hall in Basque and Spanish