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Coat of arms of Forez Armoiries Forez.svg
Coat of arms of Forez

Forez is a former province of France, corresponding approximately to the central part of the modern Loire département and a part of the Haute-Loire and Puy-de-Dôme départements.


The final "z" in Forez (French pronunciation:  [fɔʁɛ] ) is not pronounced in the Loire département; however, it is pronounced in the western part of the former province, essentially when referring to the correspondent Forez Mountains (on the border between Puy-de-Dôme and Loire. The name is derived from the city of Feurs. Franco-Provençal is the language that was historically spoken in the region.

The city of Montbrison, Loire is considered the historical capital of the Forez.

Residents of the Forez are called Foréziens.

The rue du Forez in the third arrondissement of Paris was built in the late 16th century and appears on Turgot's map of Paris.

List of counts of Forez

The origins of the county of Forez are obscure. There are several early figures who are sometimes supposed to have been counts of Forez. Whether these are considered counts or not can affect the numbering offered for the later counts.

The counts of Forez were also counts of Lyon in the Empire until 1173, when the countship of Lyon passed to the Archbishop of Lyon.

House of Forez

The period between 1096 and 1115 is uncertain owing to a lack of sources.

House of Albon

House of Bourbon

House of Savoy

United to the French crown in 1531.


United to the French crown permanently in 1574.

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Anne of Auvergne

Anne of Auvergne also known as Anna d'Auvergne was Sovereign Dauphine of Auvergne and Countess of Forez as well as Dame de Mercoeur from 1400 and 1417. She was also Duchess of Bourbon by marriage to Louis II, Duke of Bourbon.

Guigues IV of Forez

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Renaud de Forez

Renaud de Forez was a French churchman who was Archbishop of Lyon as Renaud II (1193–1226). A son of Count Guigues II of Forez, Renaud acted as regent of the county of Forez for his nephew, Guigues IV, between 1203 and 1218. He joined the Lyon chapter during the episcopate of Guichard of Pontigny. He became abbot of Saint-Just in 1182.

Matilda I, Countess of Nevers or Mathilde de Courtenay, or Mahaut de Courtenay, (1188–1257), was a ruling countess of Nevers, Auxerre and Tonnerre. She was the only daughter of Peter II of Courtenay and of Agnes of Nevers, born from the Capetian House of Courtenay, she was married to Hervé IV of Donzy and then to Guigues IV of Forez.

Guigues III, also numbered Guigues IV, nicknamed Branda, was the count of Forez from 1199 until his death while on the Fourth Crusade.


Coordinates: 45°44′30″N4°13′36″E / 45.741667°N 4.226667°E / 45.741667; 4.226667