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Coat of Arms of Sarthe
Location of Sarthe in France
Department number: 72
Region: Pays de la Loire
Prefecture: Le Mans
Subprefectures: La Flèche
Arrondissements: 3
Cantons: 40
Communes: 375
President of the General Council: Roland du Luart
Population Ranked 47th
 -1999 529,851
Population density: 85/km2
Land area¹: 6206 km2
¹ French Land Register data, which exclude estuaries, and lakes, ponds, and glaciers larger than 1 km2.
The Château de Boisclaireau, residence of the Gueroust family, Counts of Boisclaireau, in Sarthe.

Sarthe (French pronunciation: [saʁt]) is a French department, named after the Sarthe River.



The department was created during the French Revolution on March 4, 1790, pursuant to the law of December 22, 1789, starting from a part of province of Maine which divided into two departments, Sarthe and Mayenne.[1]

In Roman Times, this provence contained the city of Mans, and many ruins are still left standing. The Thermal Bathhouse attracts many tourists, as does the theater of Aubigné-Racan, both located on the limits of Anjoue, Maine, and Touraine


The department of Sarthe is at the north end of the administrative region of Pays-de-la-Loire. This places it south of Basse-Normandie and on the south edge of the Armorican Massif. It is bordered by the departments of Orne, Eure-et-Loir, Loir-et-Cher, Indre-et-Loire, Maine-et-Loire and Mayenne.


See also


External links


1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

SARTHE, a department of north-western France, formed in 1790 out of the eastern part of Maine, and portions of Anjou and of Perche. Pop. (1906) 421,470. Area 2410 sq. m. It is bounded N. by the department of Orne, N.E. by Eure-et-Loir, E. by Loir-et-Cher, S. by Indre-et-Loire and Maine-et-Loire and W. by Mayenne. The Sarthe, a sub-tributary of the Loire, flows in a south-westerly direction through the department; and the Loire, which along with the Sarthe joins the Mayenne to form the Maine above Angers, traverses its southern borders. Broken and elevated country is found in the north and east of the department, which elsewhere is low and undulating. The highest point (on the boundary towards Orne) is 1115 ft. The Sarthe flows past Le Mans and Sable, receiving the Merdereau and the Vegre from the right, and the Orne Saosnoise and the Huisne from the left. The Loir passes La Fleche, and along its chalky banks caves have been hollowed out which, like those along the Cher and the Loire, serve as dwelling-houses and stores. The mean annual temperature is 51° to 52° Fahr. The rainfall is between 25 and 26 in.

The majority of the inhabitants live by agriculture. There are three distinct districts: - the corn lands to the north of the Sarthe and the Huisne; the region of barren land and moor, partly planted with pine, between those two streams and the Loir; and the winegrowing country to the south of the Loir. Sarthe ranks high among French departments in the production of barley, and more hemp is grown here than in any other department. The raising of cattle and of horses, notably those of the Perche breed, prospers, and fowls and geese are fattened in large numbers for the Paris market. Apples are largely grown for cider. The chief forests are those of Berce in the south and Perseigne in the north, but the department owes its well-wooded appearance in a great measure to the hedges planted with trees which divide the fields. Coal, marble and freestone are among the mineral products. The staple industry is the weaving of hemp and flax, and cotton and wool-weaving are also carried on. Paper and cardboard are made in several localities.

Iron-foundries, copper and bell foundries, factories for provisionpreserving, marble-works at Sable, potteries, tile-works, glass-works and stained-glass manufactories, currieries, machine factories, wiregauze factories, flour-mills and distilleries are also prominent industrial establishments, a great variety of which are found at Le Mans. Flour, agricultural products, live stock and poultry form the bulk of the exports. The department is served by the Western, the Orleans and the State railways, and the Sarthe and Loir provide about too m. of waterway, though the latter river carries little traffic.

The department forms the diocese of Le Mans and part of the ecclesiastical province of Tours, has its court of appeal at Angers, and its educational centre at Caen, and constitutes part of the territory of the IV. army corps, with its headquarters at Le Mans. The four arrondissements are named from Le Mans, the chief town, La Fleche, Mamers and St Calais. The principal places are Le Mans, La Fleche, La Ferte Bernard, Sable and Solesmes, which receive separate treatment. Besides these places, those of chief architectural interest are Le Lude, which has a fine château of the Renaissance period, Sille-le-Guillaume, where there is a Gothic church and a stronghold of the 15th century, and St Calais, the church of which dates from the 14th to the 17th centuries.

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