The Limes – The Ancient Roman Border
The ancient Romans conquered Germania a little bit at a time. When, in the year AD150, they pushed the borders of the Imperium Romanum from the Neckartal a little bit further towards the east, they drew a line through what is today the Swabian Forest – straight as an arrow between Öhringen in the north and Haghof bei Welzheim in the south. They didn’t draw it on the maps, instead it took the form of a broad swath cleared through the forest. This swath, along which the Romans first dug a deep ditch and then built a bank, and subsequently completed it with a high palisade of solid oak, we know today as the Limes.
Experience the UNESCO World Heritage Site Limes
The Swabian Forest invites you to cross borders, to take excursions to the Upper Germanic Limes which, almost 1,900 years ago, marked the outer borders of the Imperium Romanum, the Roman Empire.
In Mainhardt, there are 300 metres of the original Roman castle walls and two well-preserved sections of the former Roman border fortifications with bank and ditch. Also, near Mainhardt-Gailsbach and Großerlach-Grab, striking reconstructions of Roman watchtowers rise out of the landscape. The battlements of the western gate of the Eastern Fort in Welzheim can also be climbed.
The garrison of the Cohors XXIV voluntariorum civium Romanorum was stationed in Murrhardt, which, during its heyday, numbered up to 1,200 inhabitants of which more than 500 were soldiers. The former Roman fort, the Roman baths in the foyer of the medical centre, and the reconstructed Limes watchtowers give us a comprehensive insight into Murrhardt during Roman times.