Although it is now on the East bank of the Rhine, Burungum was a Roman settlement on the river’s western bank. The great stream changed its course in 1374. At that moment, the fourth-century fort had already been converted into a Medieval castle. The people remembered that the builders had used an older building, because they called it “the stronghold in Burgela”.
The Roman walls are still there, although they have been rebuilt time and again. Still, you can see the foundations, and on some place, the old stones rise pretty high. Within the walls is an old mansion, joined by the only surviving Medieval tower. The other buildings are more recent: a large farm with sheds and a large stable, built in 1900.
There used to be a Roman village in the second and third century, but the meandering Rhine must have destroyed it all. Only a part of the cemetery has been excavated. The fort, however, is pretty well-known, and the finds can be seen in several rooms.
The museum Haus Bürgel is bit small, and it is open on Sunday afternoons only, but it is interesting. It is obvious that some money been spent and some thought has been given to the project. Admittedly, the finds are not very special, but I think museums like these – Rindern is another example – are extremely important. People from the neighborhood know that the past is really theirs. Why this matters, I will tell in my next piece.