Le Mans

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Le Mans
Montage du Mans.jpg
Top row: left, Le Mans 24-hr automobile race in June; right, Le Mans Justice Department Office; Middle row: View of Sarthe River and historic area, including the Palais of Comtes du Maine; Bottom row: left, Le Mans Tramway in Gambetta Street; center, Facade built in Le Mans Commerce Center; right, Saint Julien Cathedral
Blason ville fr Le Mans (Sarthe) (orn ext).svg
Coat of arms
Location of Le Mans
France location map-Regions and departements-2016.svg
Red pog.svg
Le Mans
Pays de la Loire region location map.svg
Red pog.svg
Le Mans
Coordinates: 48°00′28″N0°11′54″E / 48.0077°N 0.1984°E / 48.0077; 0.1984 Coordinates: 48°00′28″N0°11′54″E / 48.0077°N 0.1984°E / 48.0077; 0.1984
Country France
Region Pays de la Loire
Department Sarthe
Arrondissement Le Mans
Canton Le Mans-1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7
Intercommunality Le Mans Métropole
Government
  Mayor (2014–2020) Stéphane Le Foll
Area
1
52.81 km2 (20.39 sq mi)
Population
 (2016-01-01) [1]
146,804
  Density2,800/km2 (7,200/sq mi)
Time zone UTC+01:00 (CET)
  Summer (DST) UTC+02:00 (CEST)
INSEE/Postal code
72181 /72000
Dialling codes (0)243
Elevation38–134 m (125–440 ft)
(avg. 51 m or 167 ft)
1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km2 (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.

Le Mans (pronounced  [lə mɑ̃] ) is a city in France on the Sarthe River. Traditionally the capital of the province of Maine, it is now the capital of the Sarthe department and the seat of the Roman Catholic diocese of Le Mans. Le Mans is a part of the Pays de la Loire region.

France Republic with mainland in Europe and numerous oversea territories

France, officially the French Republic, is a country whose territory consists of metropolitan France in Western Europe and several overseas regions and territories. The metropolitan area of France extends from the Mediterranean Sea to the English Channel and the North Sea, and from the Rhine to the Atlantic Ocean. It is bordered by Belgium, Luxembourg and Germany to the northeast, Switzerland and Italy to the east, and Andorra and Spain to the south. The overseas territories include French Guiana in South America and several islands in the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian oceans. The country's 18 integral regions span a combined area of 643,801 square kilometres (248,573 sq mi) and a total population of 67.3 million. France, a sovereign state, is a unitary semi-presidential republic with its capital in Paris, the country's largest city and main cultural and commercial centre. Other major urban areas include Lyon, Marseille, Toulouse, Bordeaux, Lille and Nice.

Maine (province) Place in France

Maine[mɛːn] is one of the traditional provinces of France. It corresponds to the former County of Maine, whose capital was also the city of Le Mans. The area, now divided into the departments of Sarthe and Mayenne, counts about 857,000 inhabitants.

Sarthe Department of France

Sarthe is a department of Pays de la Loire situated in the Grand-Ouest of the country. It is named after the River Sarthe, which flows from east of Le Mans to just north of Angers.

Contents

Its inhabitants are called Manceaux and Mancelles. Since 1923, the city has hosted the internationally famous 24 Hours of Le Mans endurance sports car race.

24 Hours of Le Mans Sports car race held in France

The 24 Hours of Le Mans is the world's oldest active sports car race in endurance racing, held annually since 1923 near the town of Le Mans, France. It is considered one of the most prestigious automobile races in the world and has been called the "Grand Prix of Endurance and Efficiency". The event represents one leg of the Triple Crown of Motorsport; other events being the Indianapolis 500 and the Monaco Grand Prix.

History

First mentioned by Claudius Ptolemy, [2] the Roman city Vindinium was the capital of the Aulerci, a sub tribe of the Aedui. Le Mans is also known as Civitas Cenomanorum (City of the Cenomani), or Cenomanus. Their city, seized by the Romans in 47 BC, was within the ancient Roman province of Gallia Lugdunensis. A 3rd-century amphitheatre is still visible. The thermae were demolished during the crisis of the third century when workers were mobilized to build the city's defensive walls. The ancient wall around Le Mans is one of the most complete circuits of Gallo-Roman city walls to survive. [3]

Roman Empire Period of Imperial Rome following the Roman Republic (27 BC–476 AD)

The Roman Empire was the post-Roman Republic period of the ancient Roman civilization. Ruled by emperors, it had large territorial holdings around the Mediterranean Sea in Europe, North Africa, the Middle East, and the Caucasus. From the constitutional reforms of Augustus to the military anarchy of the third century, the Empire was a principate ruled from Italy, homeland of the Romans and metropole of the empire, with the city of Rome as capital. The Roman Empire was then ruled by multiple emperors and divided in a Western Roman Empire, based in Milan and later Ravenna, and an Eastern Roman Empire, based in Nicomedia and later Constantinople. Rome remained the nominal capital of both parts until 476 AD, when Odoacer deposed Romulus Augustus after capturing Ravenna and the Senate of Rome sent the imperial regalia to Constantinople. The fall of the Western Roman Empire to barbarian kings, along with the hellenization of the Eastern Roman Empire into the Byzantine Empire, is conventionally used to mark the end of Ancient Rome and the beginning of the Middle Ages.

Aulerci is a generic name for some of the Celtic peoples of ancient Gaul, which included several Celtic tribes. Julius Caesar names the Aulerci with the Veneti and the other maritime states. In B. G. vii. 75, he enumerates, among the clients of the Aedui, the Aulerci Brannovices and Brannovii, as the common text stands; but the names in this chapter of Caesar are corrupt, and Brannovii does not appear to be genuine. If the name Aulerci Brannovices is genuine in vii. 75, this branch of the Aulerci, which was dependent on the Aedui, must be distinguished from those Aulerci who were situated between the Lower Seine and the Loire, and separated from the Aedui by the Senones, Carnutes, and Bituriges Cubi.

The Aedui, Haedui, or Hedui were a Gallic people of Gallia Lugdunensis, who inhabited the country between the Arar (Saône) and Liger (Loire), in today's France. Their territory thus included the greater part of the modern departments of Saône-et-Loire, Côte-d'Or and Nièvre.

As the use of the French language replaced late Vulgar Latin in the area, Cenomanus, with dissimilation, became known as Celmans.Cel- was taken to be a form of the French word for "this" and "that", and was replaced by le, which means "the".

Vulgar Latin Non-standard Latin variety spoken by the people of Ancient Rome

Vulgar Latin or Sermo Vulgaris, also Colloquial Latin, or Common Romance, was a range of non-standard sociolects of Latin spoken in the Mediterranean region during and after the classical period of the Roman Empire. It is distinct from Classical Latin, the standard and literary version of the language. Compared to Classical Latin, written documentation of Vulgar Latin appears less standardized. Works written in Latin during classical times and the earlier Middle Ages used prescribed Classical Latin rather than Vulgar Latin, with very few exceptions, thus Vulgar Latin had no official orthography of its own.

In phonology, particularly within historical linguistics, dissimilation is a phenomenon whereby similar consonants or vowels in a word become less similar. For example, when a sound occurs before another in the middle of a word in rhotic dialects of English, the first tends to drop out, as in "beserk" for berserk, "suprise" for surprise, "paticular" for particular, and "govenor" for governor – this does not affect the pronunciation of government, which has only one, but English government tends to be pronounced "goverment", dropping out the first n.

Gregory of Tours mentions a Frankish sub-king Rigomer, who was killed by King Clovis I in his campaign to unite the Frankish territories.

Gregory of Tours Gallo-Roman historian and Bishop of Tours

Gregory of Tours was a Gallo-Roman historian and Bishop of Tours, which made him a leading prelate of the area that had been previously referred to as Gaul by the Romans. He was born Georgius Florentius and later added the name Gregorius in honour of his maternal great-grandfather. He is the primary contemporary source for Merovingian history. His most notable work was his Decem Libri Historiarum, better known as the Historia Francorum, a title that later chroniclers gave to it, but he is also known for his accounts of the miracles of saints, especially four books of the miracles of Martin of Tours. St. Martin's tomb was a major pilgrimage destination in the 6th century, and St. Gregory's writings had the practical effect of promoting this highly organized devotion.

Franks people

The Franks were a collection of Germanic peoples, whose name was first mentioned in 3rd century Roman sources, associated with tribes on the Lower and Middle Rhine, on the edge of the Roman Empire. Later the term was associated with later Romanized Germanic dynasties within the collapsing Roman Empire, who eventually commanded the whole region between the rivers Loire and Rhine. They then imposed power over many other post-Roman kingdoms and Germanic peoples, and still later they were given recognition by the Catholic Church as successors to the old rulers of the Western Roman Empire.

Clovis I first king of the Franks (c. 466–511)

Clovis was the first king of the Franks to unite all of the Frankish tribes under one ruler, changing the form of leadership from a group of royal chieftains to rule by a single king and ensuring that the kingship was passed down to his heirs. He is considered to have been the founder of the Merovingian dynasty, which ruled the Frankish kingdom for the next two centuries.

As the principal city of Maine, Le Mans was the stage for struggles in the eleventh century between the counts of Anjou and the dukes of Normandy. When the Normans had control of Maine, William the Conqueror successfully invaded England and established an occupation. In 1069 the citizens of Maine revolted and expelled the Normans, resulting in Hugh V being proclaimed count of Maine. Geoffrey V of Anjou married Matilda of England in the cathedral. Their son Henry II Plantagenet, king of England, was born here. In 1154, during the reign of his uncle King Stephen, Henry landed in England with an army, intent on challenging Stephen for the throne. Some of the members of that feudal force were known by the surname 'del Mans' (Latin for of Mans, as the city was then known.) In medieval records pertaining to the history of Gloucester is a reference to one such man, Walter del Mans, and beside his name 'Cenomanus' was added by the medieval scribe, so that there is no doubt as to Walter's origin. In the English censuses down to the twentieth century the surname Mans (latterly often spelled Manns) was virtually confined to the counties of Gloucestershire and Herefordshire and their borderlands, reflecting the original settlement patterns in the Welsh Marches of the original followers of Henry's from Le Mans in 1154. A John Mans/Manns was escheator of Hereford 1399-1400. One family from [Le] Mans held the manor of Dodenham, Worcestershire. (Calendar of the Records of the Corporation of Gloucester, Item 96, ca.1200; Fine Roles Henry III, 23 Aug. 1233 [Hereford];'Parishes: Doddenham', A History of the County of Worcester, volume 4 (1924), pp. 260–62.) Intercourse between England and Le Mans continued throughout the Angevin period.

Anjou Province

Anjou is a historical province of France straddling the lower Loire River. Its capital was Angers and it was roughly coextensive with the diocese of Angers. It bordered Brittany to the west, Maine to the north, Touraine to the east and Poitou to the south. The adjectival form of Anjou is Angevin, and inhabitants of Anjou are known as Angevins. During the Middle Ages, the County of Anjou, ruled by the Counts of Anjou, was a prominent fief of the French crown.

Normandy Administrative region of France

Normandy is the northwesternmost of the 18 regions of France, roughly referring to the historical Duchy of Normandy.

William I, usually known as William the Conqueror and sometimes William the Bastard, was the first Norman King of England, reigning from 1066 until his death in 1087. A descendant of Rollo, he was Duke of Normandy from 1035 onward. After a long struggle to establish his power, by 1060 his hold on Normandy was secure, and he launched the Norman conquest of England six years later. The rest of his life was marked by struggles to consolidate his hold over England and his continental lands and by difficulties with his eldest son.

Wilbur Wright began official public demonstrations of the airplane he had developed with his younger brother Orville on August 8, 1908, at the Hunaudières horse racing track near Le Mans.

World War II

Soon after Le Mans was liberated by the U.S. 79th and 90th Infantry Divisions on 8 August 1944, [4] engineers of the Ninth Air Force IX Engineering Command began construction of a combat Advanced Landing Ground outside of the town. The airfield was declared operational on 3 September and designated as "A-35". It was used by several American fighter and transport units until late November of that year in additional offensives across France; the airfield was closed. [5] [6]

Post World War II

Main sights

Climate

Le Mans has an oceanic climate influenced by the mild Atlantic air travelling inland. Summers are warm and occasionally hot, whereas winters are mild and cloudy. Precipitation is relatively uniform and moderate year round.

Climate data for Le Mans (1981–2010 averages)
MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDecYear
Record high °C (°F)17.2
(63.0)
21.0
(69.8)
24.9
(76.8)
30.3
(86.5)
32.4
(90.3)
37.1
(98.8)
40.4
(104.7)
40.5
(104.9)
34.6
(94.3)
30.0
(86.0)
22.2
(72.0)
18.3
(64.9)
40.5
(104.9)
Average high °C (°F)7.9
(46.2)
9.1
(48.4)
12.7
(54.9)
15.7
(60.3)
19.5
(67.1)
23.1
(73.6)
25.5
(77.9)
25.4
(77.7)
21.9
(71.4)
17.0
(62.6)
11.4
(52.5)
8.2
(46.8)
16.5
(61.7)
Average low °C (°F)2.1
(35.8)
1.8
(35.2)
3.7
(38.7)
5.6
(42.1)
9.4
(48.9)
12.4
(54.3)
14.2
(57.6)
13.8
(56.8)
11.0
(51.8)
8.6
(47.5)
4.7
(40.5)
2.5
(36.5)
7.5
(45.5)
Record low °C (°F)−15.2
(4.6)
−17.0
(1.4)
−11.3
(11.7)
−4.9
(23.2)
−3.7
(25.3)
1.6
(34.9)
3.9
(39.0)
3.2
(37.8)
−0.5
(31.1)
−5.4
(22.3)
−12.0
(10.4)
−21.0
(−5.8)
−21.0
(−5.8)
Average precipitation mm (inches)67.2
(2.65)
50.9
(2.00)
54.3
(2.14)
53.9
(2.12)
63.0
(2.48)
46.9
(1.85)
56.8
(2.24)
42.7
(1.68)
52.9
(2.08)
66.0
(2.60)
62.7
(2.47)
70.2
(2.76)
687.5
(27.07)
Average precipitation days11.29.310.29.510.07.37.66.58.010.710.511.8112.6
Average relative humidity (%)87837874757372747986888879.8
Mean monthly sunshine hours 66.289.7134.3170.9199.7224.1227.4224.9181.0118.870.963.91,771.8
Source #1: Meteo France [7] [8]
Source #2: Infoclimat.fr (humidity, snowy days 1961–1990) [9]

Demographics

At the 1999 French census, there were 293,159 inhabitants in the metropolitan area ( aire urbaine ) of Le Mans, with 146,105 of these living in the city proper (commune).

Historical population
YearPop.±% p.a.
1962132,181    
1968143,246+1.35%
1975152,285+0.88%
1982147,697−0.44%
1990145,502−0.19%
1999146,105+0.05%
2006148,169+0.20%
Source: http://www.insee.fr/fr/ffc/docs_ffc/psdc.htm

Economy

Transportation

The Gare du Mans is the main railway station of Le Mans. It takes 1 hour to reach Paris from Le Mans by TGV high speed train. There are also TGV connections to Lille, Marseille, Nantes, Rennes and Brest. Gare du Mans is also a hub for regional trains. Le Mans inaugurated a new light rail system on 17 November 2007. [10]

Sport

Motorsport

Dunlop Curve Le Mans 2007 - Dunlop Curve.jpg
Dunlop Curve
Handprints and signatures from the winners of the 1992 edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, Mark Blundell, Derek Warwick, and Yannick Dalmas, at Le Mans Empreinte pilotes 24h.jpg
Handprints and signatures from the winners of the 1992 edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, Mark Blundell, Derek Warwick, and Yannick Dalmas, at Le Mans

The first French Grand Prix took place on a 64-mile (103 km) circuit based at Le Mans in 1906.

Since the 1920s, the city has been best known for its connection with motorsports. There are two official and separate racing tracks at Le Mans, though they share certain portions. The smaller is the Bugatti Circuit (named after Ettore Bugatti, founder of the car company bearing his name), a relatively short permanent circuit, which is used for racing throughout the year and has hosted the French motorcycle Grand Prix. The longer and more famous Circuit de la Sarthe is composed partly of public roads. These are closed to the public when the track is in use for racing. Since 1923, this route has been used for the famous 24 Hours of Le Mans sports car endurance race. Boutiques and shops are set up during the race, selling merchandise and promoting products for cars.

The "Le Mans start" was formerly used in the 24-hour race: drivers lined up across the track from their cars, ran across the track, jumped into their cars and started them to begin the race.

The 1955 Le Mans disaster was a large accident during the race that killed eighty-four spectators.

Basketball

The city is home to Le Mans Sarthe Basket, 2006 Champion of the LNB Pro A, France's top professional basketball division.

The team plays its home games at the Antarès, which served as one of the host arenas of the FIBA EuroBasket 1999.

Football

Cycling

Notable people


Le Mans was the birthplace of:

Basil Moreau around 1860 Basile Moreau CSC.jpg
Basil Moreau around 1860

Notable residents include:

Died in Le Mans:

International relations

Twin towns – sister cities

Le Mans is twinned with:

Gastronomy

The culinary specialty of Le Mans is rillettes , a shredded pork pâté.

Landmarks

Located at Mayet near Le Mans, the Le Mans-Mayet transmitter has a height of 342 m and is one of the tallest radio masts in France.

PanoramaLeMans.JPG
Panorama of Le Mans, facing north-west

See also

Notes

  1. birthplace of Henry II of England (now part of the Town Hall and not open to the public)

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References

  1. "Populations légales 2016". INSEE . Retrieved 25 April 2019.
  2. Geography 2.8.8
  3. Butler, R. M. (1958). "The Roman Walls of le Mans". The Journal of Roman Studies. 48 (1/2): 33–39. doi:10.2307/298210. JSTOR   298210.
  4. Blumenson, Martin, Breakout and Pursuit, Center of Military History, United States Army, Washington, D.C., 1989, pp. 436–8
  5. Johnson, David C. (1988), U.S. Army Air Forces Continental Airfields (ETO), D-Day to V-E Day; Research Division, USAF Historical Research Center, Maxwell AFB, Alabama.
  6. Maurer, Maurer. Air Force Combat Units of World War II. Maxwell AFB, Alabama: Office of Air Force History, 1983. ISBN   0-89201-092-4.
  7. "Données climatiques de la station de Le Mans" (in French). Meteo France. Retrieved 9 January 2016.
  8. "Climat Pays de la Loire" (in French). Meteo France. Retrieved 9 January 2016.
  9. "Normes et records 1961-1990: Le Mans - Arnage (72) - altitude 51m" (in French). Infoclimat. Retrieved 9 January 2016.
  10. "Le Mans light rail takes off". Railway Gazette International. 6 January 2008. Archived from the original on 16 June 2011. Retrieved 5 March 2010.
  11. "British towns twinned with French towns". Archant Community Media Ltd. Archived from the original on 5 July 2013. Retrieved 11 July 2013.
  12. Town Twinning, bolton.gov.uk, retrieved 22 January 2010
  13. officially since 1967, traditionally since 836 (oldest partnership of its kind).
  14. Lelièvre, Jean; Balavoine, Maurice (1994). Le Mans-Paderborn, 836-1994: dans l'Europe, une amitié séculaire, un sillage de lumière. Le Mans: M. Balavoine. pp. 1–42. Retrieved 9 August 2013.
  15. "The Origins of Town Twinning" (PDF). Inverness: The City of Inverness Town Twinning Committee. 8 December 2008. Archived from the original (PDF) on 31 December 2010. Retrieved 30 October 2009.
  16. "Twinnings" (PDF). Central Union of Municipalities & Communities of Greece. Retrieved 25 August 2013.

Bibliography