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This article is about the former French province, for the warship see French aircraft carrier Béarn
Béarn

Flag

Coat of arms
Map showing the Viscounty of Béarn.
Country France
Time zone CET

Béarn (Gascon: Bearn or Biarn; Basque: Biarno) is a former province of France, located in the Pyrenees mountains and in the plain at their feet, in southwest France. Along with the three Basque provinces of Soule, Lower Navarre, and Labourd, the principality of Bidache, as well as small parts of Gascony, it forms in the southwest the current département of Pyrénées-Atlantiques (64). The capitals of Bearn were Morlaàs (starting ca. 1100), Orthez (starting second half of 13th century), then Pau (beginning in the mid 15th century).[1]

Béarn is bordered by Basque provinces Soule and Lower Navarre to the west, by Gascony (Landes and Armagnac) to the north, by Bigorre to the east, and by Spain (Aragon) to the south.

The name Béarn comes from Beneharnum, a city destroyed by Vikings by 840.

Today, the mainstays of the Béarn area are the petroleum business, the aerospace industry through the helicopter manufacturer Turbomeca, tourism and agriculture (much of which is corn grown for seed). Pau was the birthplace of Elf Aquitaine, which has now become a part of Total petroleum company.

In Alexandre Dumas's The Three Musketeers series, the protagonist d'Artagnan was from Béarn (he mentions having attended his father's funeral there in the second book, Twenty Years After). That d'Artagnan is usually referred to as a Gascon is neither surprising nor incorrect, as Béarn is sometimes considered a part of Gascony.

In the eastern part of the province are two small exclaves belonging to Bigorre. They are the result of how early Bearn grew to its traditional boundaries: some old lesser viscounties were added by marriage, and absorbed into Bearn: Oloron to the south/southwest ca. 1050, Montanérès in the east in 1085, and Dax in the west in 1194.[2] When Montanérès was added, five communities or parishes (Villenave-Près-Béarn, Escaunets, Séron, Gardères, and Luquet) were not part of the dowry; they remained, or became, part of Bigorre.[1] However, they were absorbed into the département to which Bearn now belongs, Pyrénées-Atlantiques, rather than following Bigorre into Hautes-Pyrénées.

Contents

People from Béarn

See also

References

  1. ^ Bidot-Germa, Grosclaude, Duchon, "Histoire de Béarn" 1986
  2. ^ Bidot-Germa, Grosclaude, Duchon, "Histoire de Béarn" 1986, p. 23

External links

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Wiktionary

Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

Contents

English

Proper noun

Béarn

  1. A former viscounty in the southwestern French Pyrenees, which became part of the French royal domain before it was united with the French crown, together with Navarra, as a single feudal province of the French realm
    Béarn and the (Basque) region Lower Navarre formed the present départment of the Basses-Pyrenées ('Lower Pyrenees')

Related terms

Translations

Anagrams


Dutch

Proper noun

Béarn n.

  1. The Béarn region in the French Pyrenees

Related terms


French

Proper noun

Béarn m.

  1. The Béarn region in the French Pyrenees
    Pau est la capitale du Béarn
    Pau is the capital city of Béarn

Derived terms

Anagrams

  • Anagrams of abenr
  • berna

German

Proper noun

Béarn

  1. The Béarn region in the French Pyrenees

Related terms

  • Béarnaise

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