Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
- This article is about the historical county and province of Auvergne. For the modern-day administrative région of Auvergne, see Auvergne (région).
Auvergne (Occitan: Auvèrnha) was the name of an historically independent county in the center of France, as well as later a province of France. It is the name of the geographical and cultural area that corresponds to the former province. The traditional capital of the province of Auvergne was Riom.
Today, the whole of the province of Auvergne is contained inside the administrative région of Auvergne, a région which also includes provinces and territories that were not part of Auvergne historically. The capital of the région of Auvergne is Clermont-Ferrand.
Auvergne was a province of France deriving its name from the Averni, a Gallic tribe who once occupied the area. In 1790, the historical province was divided into the modern-day départements of Puy-de-Dôme, Cantal, Haute-Loire, and Allier, although Haute-Loire and Allier also include some land from the historical provinces of Bourbonnais , Lyonnais and Languedoc.
See also Rulers of Auvergne
The largest city of Auvergne is Clermont-Ferrand (409,558 inhabitants in the metropolitan area in 1999), having replaced Riom as the capital of Auvergne. A large part of the Auvergne region is covered by the volcanic Massif Central mountain range, which stretches over nearly one-sixth of France's total area.
The region is famed for its cheeses, exports of mineral waters, and tires (Michelin). It is also the site of a number of major hydroelectric projects, mainly located on the Dordogne, Cère , and Truyère rivers.
The Auvergnat language was historically spoken in Auvergne.
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