The archaeological outdoor path has extended around the eastern and southern walls of Haus Bürgel since 2006, its paving highlighting the position of several towers, a gate and the former fort bath. The Roman military fort is explained at numerous points along the way, with additional inscriptions marking Roman and medieval finds.
In addition to the wall outlines, paving slabs also mark the location of the Roman cemetery, from which many of the exhibits come. In addition, the floor plan of a grain kiln is marked with natural-stone paving. This is where grain and other crops were dried to make them keep for longer.
Note on accessibility: the outdoor path can be accessed without steps and consists of coarse natural-stone paving.
On the south side of the old fort walls, the team of the Biological Station have built raised beds for growing typical vegetables and herbs which the Germanic tribes, Romans, and people in later eras used for cooking and for seasoning their food. The kitchen garden documents the changing dining and dietary habits throughout Haus Bürgel’s 2000-year history. Learn exciting details about the eating habits of the Romans on a themed tour of the kitchen garden offered by the Biological Station.
In 2014, an oven built based on ancient models was installed in the courtyard at Haus Bürgel. It is assumed that there were once two such ovens, or similar ones, at the fort, because usually each centuria of the Roman legion had its own oven.
Public demonstrations take place several times a year as part of various events. A workshop that is popular with children and adults alike offers an introduction to baking like the Romans.
The ground in the courtyard at Haus Bürgel contains one particularly valuable relic: the foundations of the former Maternus Chapel.
There are many unanswered questions about the chapel’s origins, which the handful of written and pictorial sources are unable to clarify.
For a long time, the Maternus Chapel in Bürgel was the parish church for the twon of Zons, even after the Rhine separated Monheim and Zons when it shifted in 1374. Even when the Zons chapel of St. Martinus was elevated to the status of parish church in 1593, Bürgel retained honorary primacy as the “mother church.” It was not until 1843 that the parish of Bürgel was officially dissolved. After that, the Maternus Chapel fell into disrepair and its ruins were demolished around 1916.
For a hundred years, its foundations lay dormant underground until they were investigated by archaeologists in 2014. In addition to an almost intact chapel floor plan, the archaeologists found the foundations of the altar and a baptismal font, as well as a Roman votive stone. Since 2016, the layout of the chapel has been marked by paving in the courtyard.
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