Station: [25] The fort of Boiotro

A few decades after the destruction of Boiodurum around AD 250, the Romans built a smaller, castle-like fort called Boiotro. The designs of the two forts represent two entirely different strategic concepts. While the sheer size of Boiodurum, as well as its four gates, clearly reflect a strategy of expansion, the later fortification was intended simply to secure and, if necessary, defend, the occupied territory. The name “Boiotro” is derived from the Celtic name “Boiodurum”. It is documented in several sources, including the biography of Saint Severinus written by Eugippius. This text includes several references to both Batavis and Boiotro. The coins found in excavations show that the military abandoned Boiotro in AD 375, perhaps because their wages were no longer being paid. A new building was constructed in the southeastern corner of the fort towards the end of the fifth century. You can see it in the model at the centre of the room, or outside in the museum grounds. During its excavation, archaeologists identified a destruction layer that had not been found in other parts of the fort. Aside from the remains of grain, this layer included different fragments of storage vessels and an iron fibula. These are shown in the display case alongside other finds from the excavation. Some of them date to the time of Severinus. Eugippius wrote that Severinus established a hermitage for monks, so it is likely that the new structure was a small monastery. Eugippius’ text also refers to a church, for which Severinus acquired relics attributed to St John the Baptist in the fifth century. A house of prayer was a prerequisite for establishing a community of monks. The church was probably built of wood, but there is no archaeological evidence for its existence. Roman rule in Passau ended in AD 476, when the last Roman emperor, Romulus Augustulus, was deposed. Most who considered themselves Romans or their descendants moved to Italy twelve years later and settled there; only few remained in Batavis.