Station: [12] The Customs Station

  • The Customs Station

For the Romans, the Inn River served as a boundary in several ways. Firstly it separated the provinces of Raetia and Noricum. Secondly, the river also ran between the Gallic customs district that stretched as far west as the Atlantic coast, and the Illyrian customs district that covered all the provinces to the Black Sea. We know that an Illyrian border customs station existed on the southern bank of the Inn, because it is mentioned in an inscription on the tombstone of a customs officer called Faustinianus. The precise location of this “statio Boiodurensis”, however, is not known. An early votive plaque dedicated to Jupiter that dates to around 240 suggests that the customs station pre-dated the existence of the fort of Boiotro. The exhibits in the display case also show other goods that were subject to customs duties: mortars from Quintus’ workshop in Schwabmünchen and the handle of a Spanish amphora. Duties were not only payable at customs borders but also within provinces. In that sense, Roman customs duties were more like a tax. The state used these levies not only for revenue, but also as a way to control the flow of goods. Customs duty was set at one fortieth of the overall value, or two and a half percent. The Gallic customs district even included this amount in its name, ‘Quadragesima Galliarum’. Today, the original tombstone of Faustinianus is located in the nearby church of Saint Severin, where it has been used as a stoup for centuries.