BEREZINA, a river of Russia, in the government of Minsk, forming a tributary of the Dnieper. It rises in the marshes of Borizov and flows south, inclining to east, for 350 m. (250 m. navigable), for the most part through low-lying but well-wooded country. As a navigable river, and forming a portion of the canal system which unites the Black Sea with the Baltic, it is of importance for commerce, but is subject to severe floods. It was just above Borizov that Napoleon's army forced the passage of the Berezina, with enormous losses, on the 26th-28th of November 1812, during the retreat from Moscow.
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