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Despot's gate is located at the eastern entrance to the Upper Town. Zindan Gate, Ruzica Church, and Church of Saint Petka are all located in its vicinity.

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The correct name is Despot's Gate, but the gate is sometimes referred to as Dizdar's gate because Dizdar (fortress commander) used to live in it in 18th century.

Photo: Andrija Soković/Beotura


The despot's gate with Dizdar's tower is often called the Eastern Upper Town Gate. In the Middle Ages, this was the main entrance to the Belgrade Fortress. Together with the northeastern rampart, it represents the best-preserved segment of the medieval Upper Town from the first half of the 15th century.

It was built during the rule of despot Stefan Lazarević in the period between 1404 and 1427 and it's the only gate that remained preserved in its original condition.

Due to the double walls, it consists of an inner and an outer part. On the outside of the gate, there was a drawbridge, which, if necessary, was lowered over a deep ditch. Above the outer arch of the gate was the city icon of the Mother of God.

After the tower suffered major damage in the First World War, it was partially reconstructed in 1938. The top of the tower was reconstructed in the 1970s and restored to its original shape, and in 1981 a monument to Despot Stefan was erected nearby. Today, the Despot's Gate is connected to the Zindan Gate by a pedestrian bridge over a ditch.

The Ruđer Bošković Astronomical Observatory is currently operating at the top of the tower, with several optical telescopes.

Despotova kula

Despot's and Zindan gate
Photo: Andrija Soković/Beotura

Written by: Dimitrije Vasiljević

Translated by: Andrija Soković