The Fort de Dave is one of the nine forts making up the fortified position of Namur established at the end of the XIX Century in Belgium. The fort was built from 1888 to 1892 to the designs of General Brialmont. Unlike the French forts built at the same time by Séré de Rivières, this fort was made of unreinforced concrete, a new material for the time, instead of masonry. During the siege of Namur in August 1914, the fort was heavily bombarded by German artillery. Fort de Dave was upgraded in 1930 in the hope of preventing or slowing down a hypothetical German attack. In 1940, it was attacked on May 15 and captured 9 days later. The fort is now abandoned. Fort de Dave is located 5 km south of Namur. It is one of the smallest Brialmont forts.
It is triangular in shape and overlooks the Meuse. It is surrounded by ditches 6 meters deep and 8 meters wide, defended in enfilade by 57 mm cannons housed in casemates in the counterscarp. The main armament was concentrated on the central massif, tightly packed under thick concrete. Belgian forts had few provisions compared with the daily needs of a garrison in wartime, and the latrines, showers, kitchens and mortuary located in the counterscarp made them untenable during combat. This would have a major impact on the forts' ability to withstand a prolonged assault. The service area was placed opposite the barracks, which overlooked the ditch at the rear of the fort (in this case, towards Namur) and were less well protected than the front or salient. Forts designed by Brialmont had a more weakly defended rear side to enable recapture by Belgian forces, and amenities and barracks were located there, with the ditch providing light and ventilation to living spaces.
Intense bombardment made the rear ditch untenable in battle, and German forces took advantage of this weakness after crossing the gap between 2 forts. The Brialmont forts were also designed to withstand bombardment from 21 cm guns. The top of the central massif was 4 m thick of unarmed concrete, while the walls of the caserne, deemed less exposed, were only 1.5 m thick. The position's 3 forts on the right bank of the Meuse were linked by a military railroad. The armament of the Dave fort included a rotating turret with a 21 cm gun, a turret with two 15 cm guns and two turrets with a 12 cm gun for long-range attack. There were also 3 retractable turrets with 57 mm guns for close defense. Six fast-cadence 57 mm guns and 2 mobile guns equipped the casemates for defense of the ditches and postern. The fort also had a lighting turret. The fort's heavy artillery was of German manufacture (Krupp), while the turret mechanisms were of various origins. Communication between neighboring forts was by means of light signals. The cannons used black powder, which produced asphyxiating gases in confined spaces that spread throughout the fort.