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|Largest city||Bayonne (Baiona)|
|• Total||859 km2 (332 sq mi)|
|• Density||28,375/km2 (73,490/sq mi)|
|Time zone||UTC+1 (CET)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC+2 (CEST)|
Labourd (Basque : Lapurdi; Latin : Lapurdum; Gascon: Labord) is a former French province and part of the present-day Pyrénées Atlantiques département . It is one of the traditional Basque provinces, and identified as one of the territorial component parts of the Basque Country by many, especially by the Basque nationalists.
Labourd extends from the Pyrenees to the river Adour, along the Bay of Biscay. To the south is Gipuzkoa and Navarre in Spain, to the east is Basse-Navarre, to the north are the Landes. It has an area of almost 900 km2 (347 sq mi) and a population of over 200,000 (115,154 in 1901; 209,913 in 1990), the most populous of the three French Basque provinces. Over 25% of the inhabitants speak Basque (17% in the Bayonne-Anglet-Biarritz zone, 43% in the rest). Labourd has also long had a Gascon-speaking tradition, noticeably next to the banks of the river Adour but also more diffusely throughout the whole viscounty (about 20% in Bayonne-Anglet-Biarritz).
The main town of Labourd is Bayonne, although the capital up to the French Revolution was Ustaritz, 13 km away, where local Basque leaders assembled. Other important towns are Biarritz, Anglet (between Bayonne and Biarritz), Hendaye, Ciboure and Saint-Jean-de-Luz along the coast, and Hasparren inland. The area is famous for the five-day Fêtes de Bayonne and the red peppers of Espelette. Many tourists come to the coast, especially to Biarritz, and the hills and mountains of the interior for walking and agri-tourism. La Rhune (Larrun in Basque), a 900 m high mountain, lies south of Saint-Jean-de-Luz on the border with Spain.
The traditional buildings of Labourd have a low roof, half-timbered features, stone lintels and painted in red, white and green. The house of Edmond Rostand, Villa Arnaga at Cambo-les-Bains, is such a house and is now a museum dedicated to the author of Cyrano de Bergerac and to Basque traditions.
Lapurdian (Lapurtera) is a dialect of the Basque language spoken in the region.
Ancient Labourd was inhabited by the Tarbelli, an Aquitanian tribe. They had the fortified town of Lapurdum, that eventually would become modern Bayonne, and give its name to the region.
In the Middle Ages it formed part of the Duchy of Vasconia, which eventually came to be called Gascony. In the year 844 Viking raiders conquered the former oppidum of Lapurdum, where they established a base for their incursions. They were only expelled in 986, leaving a legacy of naval expertise in Labourd and all the coastal Basque Country. The town came out of this period attested as Bayonne (and like variants).
Up to this point the area of the river Adour was referred to as the County of Vasconia after the early 9th century. According to many authorities, Duke Sancho VI of Gascony ceded Labourd and its ports, Bayonne and Biarritz, to King Sancho III of Navarre around 1023, and Sancho in turn bestowed it on his majordomo, Lope Sánchez, as viscount. This Lope was supposedly the king's relative, being a nephew of King Ramiro Garcés of Viguera. This oft-repeated story has no basis in contemporary documents, and there is no evidence that Navarre extended its territory north of the Pyrenees prior to the late 12th century.
Around 1125, Bayonne was chartered by Duke William IX of Aquitaine. In 1130–31, King Alfonso the Battler of Aragon and Navarre attacked Bayonne over a dispute on jurisdictions with the Duke of Aquitaine, William X the Saint.
Labourd was ruled directly, between 1169 and 1199, by Richard Lionheart, who gave a second charter to Bayonne c. 1174 and, c. 1175, gave to the merchants of this city the return of the duties they paid in the tolls of Poitou, Aquitaine and Gascony. This caused an uprising of Gascons and Basques (including Labourdins from outside Bayonne) but Richard defeated all the cities that had revolted.
Richard married Navarrese princess Berengaria of Navarre in 1191, which favored the trade between Navarre and Bayonne (and England). This marriage also included a jurisdictional transaction that shaped the borders of the Northern Basque Country: Lower Navarre was definitively annexed to Navarre, while Labourd and Soule remained as parts of Angevine Aquitaine. This pact was materialized in 1193 in form of the sale of their rightsby the legitimate viscounts of Labourd, who had established their seat in Ustaritz. Ustaritz was since then the capital of Labourd, instead of Bayonne, until the suppression of the province in 1790.
John I of England, gave to Bayonne the Municipal Law, that created the figures of mayor, 12 jurors, 12 councilors and 75 advisors.
Labourd passed to French hands in 1451, just before the end of the Hundred Years' War. Since then and until the French Revolution, Labourd was largely self-ruled as an autonomous French province.
In 1610, Labourd suffered a major witch-hunt at the hands of the judge Pierre de Lancre after feuds between the elites (merchant bourgeoisie vs nobility) and different social layers (nobility vs common people) took a turn for the worse over elements of superstition and alleged public morality, which ended up with some 70 supposed sorginak burnt at the stake (see Basque witch trials).
In 1790, France suppressed the historical provinces, including Labourd, incorporating them into the newly created département of Basses-Pyrénées, together with Béarn. Dominique Joseph Garat and his older brother were then representing the Biltzar (Assembly) of Labourd's third estate in Paris. Like the other Basque representatives, he opposed the new administrative layout (but eventually voted for it) and the inclusion of the Basques in the same department with Bayonne and Béarn.
During the War of the Pyrenees, Labourd had its customary trade with the Southern Basque Country interrupted, and was shaken by indiscriminate repression unleashed by the Convention (1793-1794) resulting in mass deportation to the Landes of Gascony, seizure of landholdings, and the death of an estimated 1,600 civilians from the bordering towns of Sara, Itxassou, Ascain, Biriatu, etc. The abuses included the establishment of new, alien names to the villages and towns of Labourd, but they were soon after reverted to their usual names.
In the last decades, petitions have asked for the separation from Béarn and the creation of a Basque département, together with the other two historical Basque provinces of Lower Navarre and Soule.
Labourd, like the other coastal territories of the Basque Country, played an important role in early European exploitation of the Atlantic Ocean.
The earliest document (a bill) that mentions the whale oil or blubber dates from 670. In 1059, Labourdin whalers already gave to the viscount the oil of the first captured animal. It seems that Basques disliked the taste of whales but made good business selling their meat and oil to the French, Castilian and Flemish. Basque whalers used for this activity the longboats known as traineras, that only allowed whaling near the coast or based in a larger ship.
It seems that it was this industry, along with cod-fishing, is what brought Basque sailors to the North Sea and eventually to Newfoundland. Basque whaling in Newfoundland and Labrador began in the 1530s. By at least the early 17th century Basque whalers had reached Iceland.
The development of the rudder in Europe seems also a Basque and specifically Labourdine development. Three masted ships appear in a fresco of Estella (Navarre), dating to the 12th century, seals preserved in the Navarrese and Parisian historical archives also show similar ships. The rudder itself is first mentioned as steer "a la Navarraise" or "a la Bayonaise".
After Navarre lost San Sebastian and Hondarribia to Castile in 1200, it signed a treaty with Bayonne that made it the "port of Navarre" for nearly three centuries. Role that extended also into the Early Modern Age, after Navarre had been annexed by Castile (but both provinces remained autonomous).
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Bayonne is a city and commune and one of the two sub-prefectures of the department of Pyrénées-Atlantiques, in the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region of southwestern France. It is located at the confluence of the Nive and Adour rivers in the northern part of the cultural region of the Basque Country. Bayonne is alongside Biarritz the seat of the CA Pays Basque. This is also the southern part of Gascony, where the Aquitaine basin joins the beginning of the Pre-Pyrenees.
Aquitaine, archaic Guyenne or Guienne, is a historical region of southwestern France and a former administrative region of the country. Since 1 January 2016 it has been part of the region of Nouvelle-Aquitaine. It is situated in the far southwest corner of Metropolitan France, along the Atlantic Ocean and the Pyrenees mountain range on the border with Spain. It is composed of the five departments of Dordogne, Lot-et-Garonne, Pyrénées-Atlantiques, Landes and Gironde. In the Middle Ages, Aquitaine was a kingdom and a duchy, whose boundaries fluctuated considerably.
Gascony was a province of southwestern France that was part of the "Province of Guyenne and Gascony" prior to the French Revolution. The region is vaguely defined, and the distinction between Guyenne and Gascony is unclear; by some they are seen to overlap, while others consider Gascony a part of Guyenne. Most definitions put Gascony east and south of Bordeaux.
Pyrénées-Atlantiques are a department in the southwest corner of France and of the region of Nouvelle-Aquitaine. Named after the Pyrenees mountains and the Atlantic Ocean, it covers the French Basque Country and the Béarn. Its prefecture is Pau. In 2017, it had a population of 677,309.
Biarritz is a city on the Bay of Biscay, on the Atlantic coast in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques department in the French Basque Country in southwestern France. It is located 35 kilometres (22 mi) from the border with Spain. It is a luxurious seaside tourist destination known for the Hôtel du Palais, its casinos in front of the sea and its surfing culture.
Lower Navarre is a traditional region of the present-day French département of Pyrénées-Atlantiques. It corresponds to the northernmost merindad of the Kingdom of Navarre during the Middle Ages. After the Spanish conquest of Iberian Navarre (1512–24), this merindad was restored to the rule of the native king, Henry II. Its capitals were Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port and Saint-Palais. In the extreme north there was the little sovereign Principality of Bidache, with an area of 1,284 km2 (496 sq mi) and a decreasing population of 44,450, 25,356.
Soule is a former viscounty and French province and part of the present day Pyrénées-Atlantiques département. It is divided into two cantons of the arrondissement (district) of Oloron-Sainte-Marie, and a part of the canton of Saint Palais.
Béarn is one of the traditional provinces 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 Béarn were Beneharnum, Morlaàs, Orthez, and then Pau.
Ainhoa is a commune in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques department in the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region in southwestern France.
Anglet is a commune in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques department in the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region of southwestern France.
Arbonne is a commune in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques department in the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region of southwestern France.
Arcangues is a commune in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques department in the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region of southwestern France in what was formerly the Basque province of Labourd.
Bardos is a commune in the former Basque province of Labourd in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques department in the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region of south-western France.
Bassussarry is a commune in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques department in the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region of southwestern France.
Boucau is a commune in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques department and Nouvelle-Aquitaine region of south-western France. It is located in the former province of Labourd.
Sames is a commune in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques department in southwestern France. It is generally considered part of the Basque Country province of Lower Navarre.
The French Basque Country, or Northern Basque Country is a region lying on the west of the French department of the Pyrénées-Atlantiques. Since 1 January 2017, it constitutes the Basque Municipal Community presided over by Jean-René Etchegaray.
The Duchy of Gascony or Duchy of Vasconia was a duchy located in present-day southwestern France and northeastern Spain, an area encompassing the modern region of Gascony. The Duchy of Gascony, then known as Wasconia, was originally a Frankish march formed to hold sway over the Basques (Vascones). However, the Duchy went through different periods, from its early years with its distinctively Basque element to the merger in personal union with the Duchy of Aquitaine to the later period as a dependency of the Plantagenet kings of England.
The County of Vasconia Citerior was a medieval domain attested as of 824. It may have comprised the lands between the western Pyrenees and the river Adour.
The end of Basque home rule or foruak/fors in France was an event putting an end to the secular Basque native institutional and legal system during the French revolutionary period (1789-1795). The final violent dissolution of the semi-autonomous Basque institutional and legal system was coupled with the arrival of French troops to the Basque Country within the War of the Pyrenees and a deliberate terror on the Basque population centred in Labourd.