Danube Virtual Museum

Castrum ad Octavum

In the early Middle Ages, during the reign of Byzantine Emperor Justinian (527-565), Fortress Castrum ad Octavum was built on the bank of the Danube, at a place called Gradina, about 2 km away from the village Višnjica. Procopius, a writer of the Justinian time, gave uncertain information about these findings. He also recorded that Octavum was built on the eighth mile from the fort Singidunum. Castrum was built on a well chosen strategic location, on a plateau that dominates the surroundings with a magnificent view over the Danube and the Pannonian plain.

Archaeological excavations at this site were performed by the Museum of Belgrade in 1955 and 1964. Data analysis showed that the castle was rectangular shape, measuring 180 x 100 meters. The ramparts were built using intermittently large stone and brick. The remains of a circular tower were discovered on the south side, while on the north-eastern corner, there was a wide rampart towards the Danube. The research on the west showed existence of necropolis. The graves oriented east-west were covered with large bricks, which were also used to close the graves, without using mortar. Based on material discovered in the graves, we can assume the existence of two necropolises, one from late antiquity and the other from the early Middle Ages.

(Text: Belgrade City Museum)