There are four different categories of preserved archaeological sites which are representative of the rule of the Roman Emperors in the Danube Corridor.The categories are listed below with the representative sites from the four Route countries.

Sites with Direct Connections with Emperors: These sites represent locations with well documented associations with specific emperors, usually in terms of the initiative for construction, actual residence or other use for significant periods of time.

Diocletian’s Palace (Split):This unique structure was built for the emperor Diocletian after his abdication in A.D. 305.Although made for an emperor in retirement, it retains the functional characteristics of an active imperial palace behind its fortification walls.

Felix Romuliana (Gamzigrad, near Zaječar):By virtue of its name and ancient literary references this fortified villa complex was built for the emperor Galerius’ mother Romula and perhaps for his own use.Both mother and son were cremated and buried in mausolea near the site.

Mediana (Niš):This is an late Roman villa complex in a suburb of the emperor Constantine’sbirthplace in Naissus (Niš).From recent excavations the high point of the elaborately decorated villa’s use appears to be after the death of Constantine in A.D. 337 when his sons reigned.

Sirmium (Sremska Mitrovica):Sirmium is a Roman town and the capital of the province of Lower Pannonia.The emperor Domitian probably had his headquarters here during his Dacian wars, but the crucial period is the late empire when the town was an actual imperial capital with a palace used by reigning emperors in the late third and fourth centuries.Diocletian, Constantine and other emperors were in frequent residence.

Sites Connected with Military Campaigning by an Emperor:These sites came into existence as a result of military campaigns conducted by various emperors for the occupation and consolidation of Roman control over the Danube provinces.

Durostorum (Silistra):This is a Danube legionary base which was garrisoned from the time of emperor Trajan’s Dacian wars; later a nearby civilian settlement was granted municipal status during the emperor Marcus Aurelius’ program of upgrading indigenous urban settlements in the Danube Corridor.A well preserved decorated Roman tomb is on display here.

Novae (Svishtov):This is another Danube legionary base, established probably as part of the emperor Claudius’ move to station front line infantry right on the Danube frontier.It was reinforced under the emperor Vespasian later in the first century A.D.

Iader (Zadar):This is a colonial foundation under the emperor Augustus which characterizes early Roman penetration into the Danube region from the Adriatic side.

Pola (Pula): Pola, like Iader, represents an Augustan colony the marks the beginning of the occupation of Illyricum.

Narona (Vid):This was a colony founded by the dictator Julius Caesar’s supporters during or right after his mandate in Illyricum; there were also strong ties to the emperor Augustus here as indicated by the recent discovery and display of statuary from a temple of the imperial cult.The emperor Vespasian is also featured in the shrine.

Salona (Solin near Split):This is another Casarean colonial foundation which acted as a diffusion point for Roman culture in the central Dalmatian coast as the Romans began their penetration of Illyricum.

Diana and the Djerdap/Iron Gate Region (Kladovo):The series of military sites in this region begin with the emperor Tiberius’ road building activities in the Iron Gate Gorge (with repairs documented in inscriptions by the emperors Claudius, Domitian and Trajan) and continue with the cohort fort at Diana (Karataš) which was used in the emperor Trajan’s Dacian campaigns and downstream include the emperor Trajan’s Bridge across the Danube to Drobeta (Turnu Severin).Trajan’s road building inscription, the famous Tabula Traiana, can still be seen in its new location high above the Danube stream.The Archaeological Museum in Kladovo exhibits finds from these and other sites in the region.

Viminacium (Kostolac, near Požarevac):This is a legionary base that produced a prosperous civilian settlement adjacent to the castrum.The emperor Trajan most probably made Viminacium his base for the Dacian Wars, as did later emperors during campaigns on the Middle Danube.

Colonia Ulpia Traiana Sarmizegutusa ( Sarmizegutusa):The emperor Trajan founded a colony for retired military here right after the conclusion of the Dacian Wars to consolidate and control Roman control of the new provinces.

Tropaeum Traiani (Trajan’s Victory Monument, Adamclisi):The emperor Trajan almost certainly visited this site.He is mentioned in the dedicatory inscription for this battle monument consecrated to Mars, the Roman god of war and vengeance.

Apulum (Alba Iulia):This was a legionary base established under the emperor Trajan during the Dacian Wars which later was granted municipal status under the emperor Marcus Aurelius.The emperor Septimius Severus founded a second Apulum here.

Alburnus Maior (Roşia Montană):This was a Roman mining center established by the emperor Trajan for exploiting Dacia’s mineral resources, with the emphasis on gold.He brought in experienced miners from Dalmatia to work the gold mines.

Sites Resulting from an Emperors’ Military Policy:These are military sites on the Danube frontier where garrisons were located which had responsibility for not only defense but also for control of river commerce and maintenance of the Danube via militaris.The garrisons included both land-based troops and sailors of the Danube fleets.

Durostorum (Silistra), along with Novae (Svishtov):These bases remain in use throughout the empire to facilitate the emperors’ standing policy of frontier defense.

Sexaginta Prista (Ruse):This one of the major Danube fleet bases, set up by Vespasian for the Lower Danube region.

Oescus (Gigen):This was perhaps made a legionary base under the emperor Augustus, which would make it the earliest Roman garrison point on this part of the Danube.Substantial building took place under the emperor Trajan when he was campaigning on the Danube against the Dacians.Later the civilian settlement is given colonial status under the emperor Marcus Aurelius.After the emperor Aurelian’s withdrawal from Dacia, he returns a legion to the garrison here, and the emperor Constantine had another bridge built across the Danube at Oescus.

Sites Resulting from an Emperors’ Political Policy:Various emperors (for example Augustus’ Julio-Claudian line, the emperor Vespasian and his Flavian dynasty, the emperor Marcus Aurelius in the second century) instituted a deliberate policy to encourage the integration of conquered indigenous peoples into the government of the Roman Empire on the local level.This was accomplished through the granting of semi-autonomous self-rule to indigenous communities in Illyricum and the Danube provinces; this process is documented in the award of municipal status (Roman municipia, sometime coloniae) as an upgrade to existing native settlements on conquered territory.Sometimes the establishment of the imperial cult of emperor worship to promote loyalty to the person of the emperor went along with the new municipal status.Included here also are what might be termed utilitarian sites with responsibilities for traffic control and road maintenance and, in one unusual example, imperial control over an agricultural resource.

Kaleto Fortress:There are few Roman remains here but the prominent and naturally fortified location supports the argument that the Romans established a fort here to control communications between the Trans Balkan Highway in the Naissus (Niš) – Serdica (Sofia) segment and the Danube via militaris.Likely emperors to assign this activity would be the initiator of the Danube via militaris, the emperor Tiberius, or the emperor Vespasian who was responsible for upgrading the fortifications along the Danube.

Aenona (Nin):This Adriatic site shows the intent of the emperor Augustus to consolidate territorial gains in the Adriatic region with a grant of municipal status to the native community here.Statues of the first two emperors, Augustus and Tiberius, were recovered from the Capitolium Temple on the Aenona forum.

Andautonia (Ščitajevo near Zagreb):Andautonia received a later grant of municipal status under the Flavian dynasty.Its native community occupied an important position on another cross-country arterial between the Sava valley and Trans Balkan Highway and the major town of Poetovio (Ptuj) in northeastern Pannonia.

Aquae Iassae (Varaždinske Toplice):Not a great deal of detail is known about the Roman use of this site, but clearly they prized the therapeutic qualities of the spa there.The emperor Constantine restored the baths (thermae) which were built on the thermal springs.

Insulae Pullariae (Brijuni Islands in the Adriatic):The commerce in olive oil, another Roman introduced commodity, in the Danube corridor, provides an interesting parallel to the movement of imported wine and the subsequent renaissance in wine production we see today.Olive oil was transported in ceramic amphoras, just as wine was, and the containers have left abundant artifactual remains on the Danube military and civilian sites.Oil from the Insulae Pullariae, responding to military demand, appears down the Sava valley all the way to Sirmium and also on the Middle Danube.The production center in the Adriatic changes hands from private to imperial and under the emperor Claudius olive oil continues to be produced.The major point of difference from the Danube Wine Route is, naturally, the olive trees will not grow in the Danube regions, whereas vineyards thrive there.

Histria (Istria):When the Romans entered the Danube corridor from the east, cities like Histria with long histories in the Hellenistic world came under Roman control.Probably under the emperor Augustus Histria as an already formed urban entity received something equivalent to municipal status in the Empire and were permitted to retain their Greek forms of town government.

Danube Wine Regions:Specifically relevant to the Danube Wine Route is the documented presence on virtually every site on the Roman Emperors Route of Roman transport amphora.The amphoras were often labeled as to their contents and point of origin, and extensive archaeological research around the Mediterranean in recent years have allowed the identification of trade patterns which reached into the Danube corridor from both the west and east.

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