Photographer's Note

One more picture from the Devin Castle, showing better its important strategic position upon the confluence of the Danube flowing from South-West and turning to East (to the left in this pic), further in the direction to Bratislava, creating a natural border between Slovakia and Austria (taking over this function from the Morava river), and Morava river joining Danube from the North-West (from the right, under and behind the castle hill).
Added workshop clarifies its geografic situation in a larger scale.
One remark about the recent history: this very rare natural and historical site during the years of communism fell into the strictly guarded border zone, along the river bank there were two parallel fences from barbed wire with high-voltage electricity (in this picture in the bottom left corner), with scary watchtowers and armed borderguards walking with dogs... During the Cold War access to this site was forbidden at all. Such memories attach even more emotional value to this national monument for our people.
The historical note from one of my previous postings:
The castle hill was settled from pre-historic times, in ancient times there was an advanced guard fortress belonging to the Roman military camp Carnuntum (couple of km from here in Austria). In 9th century here was an important Slavonic fortress and seat of the Slovak princes, first time mentioned in written in 864 as a fortress Dowina. During the Great Moravian Empire (853-907) it was an important military and economic centre. Later it became a border guard castle, a Crown’s or feudalist property. Some time before 13th century the castle of stone was constructed on the rock. In the first half of 15th and in the 16th century it was reconstructed as a gothic-rennaisance castle, in 1635-1918 a property of aristocratic Palffy family. In 1809 it was blown up by Napoleon’s troups. Since 1973 conservation of ruins is going on, as well as archaeologic research, which discovered foundations of the Slavonic basilica and Roman houses. Since 1984 the area is open for public.

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Additional Photos by Peter Bircak (Tavo) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 138 W: 8 N: 163] (587)
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