Auch

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For the bird, see great auk. For the European surname, possibly a habitational name for early inhabitants, see Auch (name).
Auch
Cathedral
Cathedral
Coat of arms of Auch
Coat of arms
Auch is located in France
Auch
Auch
Coordinates: 43°38′47″N 0°35′08″E / 43.6465°N 0.5855°E / 43.6465; 0.5855Coordinates: 43°38′47″N 0°35′08″E / 43.6465°N 0.5855°E / 43.6465; 0.5855
Country France
Region Midi-Pyrénées
Department Gers
Arrondissement Auch
Intercommunality Grand Auch
Government
 • Mayor (2008–2014) Franck Montaugé
Area
 • Land1 72.48 km2 (27.98 sq mi)
Population (2012)
 • Population2 23,173
 • Population2 density 320/km2 (830/sq mi)
INSEE/Postal code 32013 / 32000
Elevation 115–281 m (377–922 ft)
(avg. 166 m or 545 ft)

1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km² (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.

2 Population without double counting: residents of multiple communes (e.g., students and military personnel) only counted once.

Auch (French pronunciation: ​[oʃ]; Gascon: Aush or Aux [aʊʃ]) is a commune in southwestern France. Located in the region of Midi-Pyrénées, it is the capital of the Gers department. Auch is the historical capital of Gascony.

History[edit]

Auch is a very ancient town, whose settlement was noted by the Romans during their conquest of the area in the 50s BC. At that time, it was settled by an Aquitanian tribe known to the Romans as the Ausci. Their name for the town was Climberrum[1] or Elimberris.[2] This has been tentatively etymologized from the Iberian iltir ("town, oppidum") and a cognate of the Basque berri ("new"), although another Iberian settlement in Granada recorded by the Romans as "Iliberi" probably had no contact with proto-Basque speaking peoples.[citation needed] Following their conquest,[when?] the Romans renamed the town Augusta Auscorum or Ausciorum ("Augusta of the Ausci"). Augusta Auscorum was one of the twelve civitates of the province of Novempopulana (Gascony) and became the provincial capital after the 409 destruction of Eauze by the Vandals.

The common term Augusta was eventually[when?] dropped and the name evolved into the modern Gascon Aush and French Auch.

The town became the seat of a Catholic archdiocese which lasted until the French Revolution. Its archbishops claimed the title of Primate of Aquitaine, Novempopulana, and Navarre.

Population[edit]

Historical population
Year Pop.   ±%  
1793 8,444 —    
1800 7,696 −8.9%
1806 8,918 +15.9%
1821 9,670 +8.4%
1831 9,801 +1.4%
1841 10,867 +10.9%
1846 12,323 +13.4%
1851 12,141 −1.5%
1856 12,001 −1.2%
1861 11,899 −0.8%
1866 12,500 +5.1%
1872 13,087 +4.7%
1876 13,785 +5.3%
1881 14,186 +2.9%
1886 15,090 +6.4%
1891 14,782 −2.0%
1896 14,838 +0.4%
1901 13,939 −6.1%
1906 13,526 −3.0%
1911 13,638 +0.8%
1921 11,825 −13.3%
1926 12,272 +3.8%
1931 12,567 +2.4%
1936 13,313 +5.9%
1946 15,253 +14.6%
1954 16,382 +7.4%
1962 18,918 +15.5%
1968 21,462 +13.4%
1975 23,185 +8.0%
1982 23,258 +0.3%
1990 23,136 −0.5%
1999 21,838 −5.6%
2008 21,744 −0.4%

Sights[edit]

Auch is known for its Renaissance Cathédrale Sainte-Marie with its magnificent organ, carved stalls and rose stained-glass windows, La Tour d'Armagnac – a 14th-century prison, as well as a statue of d'Artagnan who was based on the real life person, Charles de Batz, Comte d'Artagnan born nearby in the château de Castelmore, and written about by Alexandre Dumas.

Geography[edit]

The River Gers flows through the town.

Transportation[edit]

Auch is well connected to nearby cities and towns such as Agen, Toulouse and Tarbes by Routes Nationales.

Personalities[edit]

Auch was the birthplace of:

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Auch" in the Encyclopædia Britannica, 9th ed. 1878.
  2. ^ "Auch" in the Encyclopædia Britannica, 11th ed. 1911.

External links[edit]