Roman Ruse

Roman Fortress at Ruse

Ruse (Rousse) built on the banks of the beautiful Danube river has a wonderful ancient Roman fortress.  During the Roman period in Bulgarian history, the Danube marked the northern boundary of the Roman Empire.  Along the length of the Danube, there were about 8 Roman settlements and fortresses, one of which was at Ruse.  The fortified settlement, built in the 1st century AD,  was called 'Sexaginta Prista' meaning 'Sixty Ships'.  The name derives from it having moorings for 60 'prista', the high speed Roman war ships.  The settlement once housed 600 Roman soldiers.

Today there is an excellent archaeological reserve housing the archaeological remains of Sexaginta Prista.  It is strategically situated overlooking the beautiful Danube river.  The reserve includes the remains of the perimeter wall, a turret, barracks, a storage area and the Temple of Apollo.  Wonderful artefacts from the site including mini statuettes of many Roman gods are housed in the Regional Historical Museum.