Toul: Wikis


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Coordinates: 48°40′30″N 5°53′30″E / 48.675°N 5.89166666667°E / 48.675; 5.89166666667

Commune of Toul

Toul Cathedral
Toul is located in France
Country France
Region Lorraine
Department Meurthe-et-Moselle
Arrondissement Toul
Intercommunality Toulois
Mayor Nicole Feidt
Elevation 200–400 m (660–1,300 ft)
Land area1 30.59 km2 (11.81 sq mi)
Population2 16,945  (1999)
 - Density 554 /km2 (1,430 /sq mi)
INSEE/Postal code 54528/ 54200
1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km² (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.
2 Population sans doubles comptes: residents of multiple communes (e.g., students and military personnel) only counted once.
Warning: Value not specified for "common_name"
Imperial City of Toul
Free Imperial City of the Holy Roman Empire
Bishopric of Toul
? – 1552
Capital Toul
Government Republic
Historical era Middle Ages
 - Gained Reichsfreiheit Uncertain Enter start year
 - Three Bishoprics
    annexed by France
1552 1552
 - Treaty of Westphalia
    recognises annexation

Toul is a commune in the Meurthe-et-Moselle department in north-eastern France.

It is a sub-prefecture of the department.



Toul is located between Commercy and Nancy, and situated between the Moselle River and the Canal de la Marne au Rhin.


Toul was known to the Romans as Tullum Leucorum, and was the capital of the Gaulish tribe of the Leuci.

In 612, King Theudebert II of Austrasia was defeated by King Theuderic II of Burgundy near Toul. By the Treaty of Meerssen of 870, Toul became part of East Francia, the later Holy Roman Empire. During the High Middle Ages, it became a Free Imperial City. Toul was annexed to France by King Henry II in 1552; this was recognized by the Holy Roman Empire in the Peace of Westphalia of 1648. It then was a part of the French province of the Three Bishoprics.

During the siege of 1870 during the Franco-Prussian War, the last time that Toul's defenses were used as a classical fortress, 64 guns opened fire at 6am on 23 September, and the fortress surrendered at 3pm after 2,433 shells had been fired.

Toul was the seat of the bishops of Toul; the diocese was founded around 365 and existed until 1807.

The city was also the primary base of the United States Air Service - predecessor to the United States Air Force - during World War I. As such, it was a base for many of the 45 war time squadrons including the squadrons of the 1st Pursuit Group, 1st Observation Group and others. The Americans referred to the area around Toul as the Toul Sector. Two large operations were launched from this area: the St. Mihiel offensive and the Meuse-Argonne offensive, both in September.


The most striking features are the impressive stone ramparts. It is not known precisely when they were first built, but there appears to have been a fortified town at this location since the earliest recorded history. Today, the ramparts encircle and define the old town. They are built of dressed white stone, and topped with grass, and in places are over five metres high.

There is a great deal of Roman archæology in the area and allegedly some in the town. The Roman fortified town of Grand is some 30 km away, with its great amphitheatre and temple to the Cult of Apollo.

The cathedral is a magnificent example of Gothic architecture.


The old town's architecture is dominated by past glories in various states of decay, including a major gothic cathedral, which is in a poor condition and is being slowly restored. Many of the houses were built as canonical residences in the Late Middle Ages and bear vestiges in the form of ornamental stonework.

There is no trace of the monastery, however its wine-cellars still exist, under the shops on the North side of the Rue Gambetta. (Access is possible via the Camera Shop).


Toul is at the intersection of the Moselle River (which divides into the river proper and the Moselle Canalisée just outside the town) with the Canal de la Marne au Rhin, and was once, consequently, an important port. The barges known as péniches still navigate these watercourses commercially, typically carrying steel, though in the summer much more of the water traffic is for pleasure.

There is a main-line railway station at Toul, the last major station before the (once vast, and still very large) marshalling yards at Nancy. However, the Paris-Strasbourg TGV line, now under construction, will pass about 20 km north of Toul, approximately mid-way between Metz and Nancy. Its completion will likely reduce Toul's importance as a station.


The surrounding countryside is a wine-growing region, in which the AOC Côtes de Toul vintage is produced. Particularly notable is the Gris de Toul.


Toul is the seat of two cantons: Toul-Nord with a population of 27,102, and Toul-Sud with a population of 13,215. The following table shows the communes in each canton:

Toul-Nord Toul-Sud
Aingeray Bicqueley
Boucq Blénod-lès-Toul
Bouvron Bulligny
Bruley Charmes-la-Côte
Dommartin-lès-Toul Chaudeney-sur-Moselle
Écrouves Choloy-Ménillot
Fontenoy-sur-Moselle Crézilles
Foug Domgermain
Gondreville Gye
Lagney Mont-le-Vignoble
Laneuveville-derrière-Foug Moutrot
Lay-Saint-Remy Ochey
Lucey Pierre-la-Treiche
Ménil-la-Tour Sexey-aux-Forges
Pagney-derrière-Barine Villey-le-Sec

Twin towns

  • Counts of Mark Arms.svg Hamm (GER)Flag of Germany.svg , since 1987

Notable people

See also

External links

1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

TOUL, a garrison town of north-eastern France, capital of an arrondissement in the department of Meurthe-et-Moselle, 21 m. W. of Nancy on the Eastern railway Pop. (1906), town 9523; commune, 13,663.13,663. Toul is situated in a plain on the left bank of the Moselle, which skirts the town on the S. and S. E., while on the N. it is bordered by the Marne-Rhine canal. It is principally important as being the centre of a great entrenched camp close to the German frontier. Immediately after the FrancoGerman War the whole system of frontier defence was revised, and of all the new fortresses of the Meuse and Moselle Toul is perhaps the most formidable. The works were begun in 1874 by the construction of four outlying forts north, north-east and south of the town, but these soon became merely an inner line of defence. The principal defences now lie much farther out on all sides. The west front of the new line of forts occupies a long line of high ground (the watershed of the Meuse and the Moselle), the north front, about 4 m. from Toul, is in undulating country, while facing towards Nancy and forming the chord of the arc which the Moselle describes from Fontenay below to Villey-le-Sec above, is the strong east front, the outlying works of which extend far to the east (Fort Frouard and other works about Nancy) and to the south-east (Pont St Vincent). The south front extends from the Moselle at Villey-leSec south-westwards till it meets the southern end of the west front on the high ground overlooking the Meuse valley. The fort at Pagny on the Meuse to the south-west may be considered an outwork of this line of defence. The perimeter of the Toul defences proper is nearly 30 m., and their mean distance from the town about 6 m. Northward, along the Meuse, Toul is connected with the fortress of Verdun by the "Meuse line" of barrier forts, the best known of which are Gironville, Liouville and Troyon. South of Toul the country was purposely left unfortified as far as Epinal (q.v.) and this region is known as the Trouee d'Epinal.

The town itself forms an oval within a bastioned enceinte pierced by three gateways. It has two important churches. That of St Etienne (formerly a cathedral) has a choir and transept of the 13th century; the nave and aisles are of the 14th, and the facade, the finest part of the building, of the last half of the 15th. The two western towers, which have no spires, reach a height of 246 ft. The two large lateral chapels of the nave are in the Renaissance style. The chief features of the interior are its stained glass and organ loft. South of the church there is a fine cloister of the end of the 13th century which 'was much damaged at the Revolution. The church of St Gengoult, which dates chiefly from the late 13th or early 14th century, has a facade of the 15th century and a cloister in the Flamboyant Gothic style of the 16th century. The hotelde-ville occupies a building of the 18th century, once the episcopal palace, and contains the library and museum. Toul is the seat of a sub-prefect and has a tribunal of commerce and a communal college among its public institutions. The industries include the manufacture of porcelain; trade is in wine and brandy.

Toul (Tullum) is one of the oldest towns of France; originally capital of the Leuci, in the Belgic Confederation, it acquired great importance under the Romans. It was evangelized by St Mansuy in the latter half of the 4th century, and became one of the leading sees of north-east Gaul. After being sacked successively by Goths, Burgundians, Vandals and Huns, Toul was conquered by the Franks in 450. Under the Merovingians it was governed by counts, assisted by elective officers. The bishops became sovereign counts in the 10th century, holding only of the emperor, and for a period of 300 years (13th to 16th centuries) the citizens maintained a long struggle against them. Together with Verdun and Metz the town and its domain formed the territory of the Trois-Eveches. Toul was forced to yield for a time to the count of Vaudemont in the 12th century, and twice to the duke of Lorraine in the 15th, and was thrice devastated by the plague in the 16th century. Charles V. made a solemn entry into the town in 1544, but in the following year, at the instance of the cardinal of Lorraine, it placed itself under the perpetual protection of the kings of France. Henry II. took possession of the Trois-Eveches in 1552, but the territory was not officially incorporated with France till 1648. Henry IV. was received in state in 1603, and in 1637 the parlement of Metz was transferred to Toul. In 1700 Vauban reconstructed the fortifications of the town. In 1790 the bishopric was suppressed and the diocese united to that of Nancy. Toul, which had then no modern defences, capitulated. in 1870 after a bombardment of twelve days.

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Simple English

]] Toul is a city in the Northeastern part of France. There are about 17,000 people living there. Toul is a fortified town, with a long history. The people who started building the city were the Romans. It was the capital of the Leuci tribe. When the Carolingian Empire was split by the Treaty of Meerssen, in 870, Toul was given to East Francia. In the early 1800s, the importance of the city diminished, and Nancy took its place.

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