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Chateau of Camou
Chateau of Camou
Coat of arms of Aïcirits-Camou-Suhast
Coat of arms
Location of Aïcirits-Camou-Suhast
Aïcirits-Camou-Suhast is located in France
Aïcirits-Camou-Suhast is located in Nouvelle-Aquitaine
Coordinates: 43°20′16″N 1°01′21″W / 43.3378°N 1.0225°W / 43.3378; -1.0225Coordinates: 43°20′16″N 1°01′21″W / 43.3378°N 1.0225°W / 43.3378; -1.0225
CantonPays de Bidache, Amikuze et Ostibarre
IntercommunalityPays Basque
 • Mayor (2014-2020) Chantal Erguy
9.60 km2 (3.71 sq mi)
 • Density72/km2 (190/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+01:00 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+02:00 (CEST)
INSEE/Postal code
64010 /64120
Elevation26–155 m (85–509 ft)
(avg. 83 m or 272 ft)
1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km2 (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.

Aïcirits-Camou-Suhast (Basque: Aiziritze-Gamue-Zohazti) is a commune in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques department in the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region in southwestern France.

The people of the commune are known as Aiziriztar.[2]



The commune is part of the Mixe country in the French Basque Country of Lower Navarre. It is located immediately north of Saint-Palais. Highway D29 runs north from Saint-Palais through the entire commune from south to north and passing through the town. The D529 Highway runs east from the commune to its junction with Highway D134. Highway D933 enters the commune in the southeast and runs north along the eastern side of the commune to exit in the north.[3]


The commune is located in the Drainage basin of the Adour and is watered by the Bidouze, a tributary of the Adour, and it has its tributaries: the Joyeuse and the Eyherachar and Recalde streams.

Places and Hamlets[4][edit]

  • Aguerria
  • Ahano
  • Aïcirits
  • Aiherguy
  • Berhouet
  • Blazy
  • Bordaberry
  • Camou
  • Capou
  • Changartia
  • Chourry
  • Christy (2 place names)
  • Coutrenia
  • Elgartemix
  • Enauthardy
  • Errecaldia
  • Escutary
  • Esquilamborda
  • Etchart
  • Etchebestia
  • Etchecoin
  • Etchegorria
  • Eyhera
  • Eyherabidia
  • Goyhenetchia
  • Halsague
  • L'Hippodrome
  • Hourcadette
  • Ihitzague
  • Ilhardoy
  • Jauberria
  • Larrabure
  • Larramendy
  • Larrania
  • Larrartia
  • Longynia
  • Mandachainia
  • Mendiburia
  • Mocoroua
  • Oyhenart
  • Sagaspe
  • Salha[5]
  • Salle
  • Suhast
  • Tocoua
  • Tolospia
  • Ttarga (craft zone)


The commune's name in Basque is Aiziritze-Gamue-Zohazti.

For Aïcirits, Jean-Baptiste Orpustan proposed the Basque etymology aitz, meaning "high" and aratze, meaning "fern patch", giving "high fern patch" or "rocky fern patch".[6]

He also indicated that Suhast may come from zuhaztoi, meaning "plantation of trees".

The inhabitants of Camou are known as Gamuar and the inhabitants of Suhast are known as Zohaztiar.

The following table details the origins of the commune name and other names in the commune.

Name Spelling Date Source Page Origin Description
Aïcirits Sanctus Martinus de Assiriz 1160 Orpustan Village
Ayxiritz 1316 Orpustan
Aysiriz 1350 Orpustan
Aychiritz 1413 Orpustan
Ayxeriis 1472 Raymond
Camou Sactus Petrus de Camono 1160 Orpustan Village
Camou-Mixe 13th century Raymond
Camo 1304 Orpustan
Chamo 1309 Orpustan
Gamo 1350 Orpustan
Camo 1413 Orpustan
Camur 1472 Raymond
Camo en Micxe 1479 Raymond
Camo 1519 Raymond
Camu 1621 Raymond
Camon 1621 Ldh/EHESS/Cassini Biscay
Camou-Mixe 1863 Raymond
Suhast Sancta Maria de Suhast 1160 Orpustan Village
Suhast 1316 Orpustan
Suast 1350 Orpustan
Suhast 1413 Orpustan
Suast 1513 Raymond
Salha Çalaha 1384 Raymond
Duchesne Chateau and Fief, subject to the Kingdom of Navarre
La maison deu senhor de Salha en lo pays de Micxe 1547 Raymond
Uhart-Juson Uhart-Juson 1863 Raymond
Fief, vassal of the Kingdom of Navarre




Suhast, formerly the village of Camou-Mixe, joined Aïcirits and Camou-Mixe on 22 March 1842.[5]


Arms of Aïcirits-Camou-Suhast
The arms are made up of the three shields of

Aïcirits, Camou, and Suhast.

Argent, three inescutcheons posed 2 and 1. The first Azure with two keys of Or saltirewise to dexter an orb the same banded and crossed at chef argent charged with three crosses pattées of gules; the second of Azure a wolf passant in Or armed and langued in gules, bordure the same charged with eight crosses of St. Andrew of Or 2 at chief, 3 at dexter and 3 at sinister; the third Or with three oaks eradicated vert shaft Tenné


List of Successive Mayors of Aïcirits-Camou-Suhast [13]

From To Name Party Position
1995 2014 Guy Énéco CPNT
2014 Current Chantal Erguy CPNT

(Not all data is known)

Administrative Associations[edit]

The commune is linked to the following administrative bodies (non exhaustive list):

  • the catchment area of Saint-Palais
  • Local Agency for Employment (ALE) of Biarritz
  • the social welfare fund of Bayonne
  • the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Bayonne Basque Country
  • the sanitation sector of Bayonne Saint-Palais-South-West-Landes
  • the subdivision of the Departmental Equipment management of Saint-Palais-Bidache

Judicial Districts[edit]

The town depends on the district court of Bayonne, the High Court of Bayonne and the Court of Appeal of Pau.


The commune belongs to six inter-communal structures:[14]

  • the community of communes of Amikuze
  • the AEP union for the Mixe country
  • the energy union of Pyrenees-Atlantiques;
  • the intercommunal union for regrouping of teaching "Ikas bidea"
  • the intercommunal union for the operation of the schools of Amikuze
  • the union to support Basque culture.


Historical population
Population change (See database)
1793 1800 1806 1821 1831 1836 1841 1846 1851
206 211 236 186 262 252 261 256 281
1856 1861 1866 1872 1876 1881 1886 1891 1896
252 240 225 211 207 228 254 226 270
1901 1906 1911 1921 1926 1931 1936 1946 1954
249 238 238 234 249 235 240 202 179
1962 1968 1975 1982 1990 1999 2006 2007 2008
204 219 564 531 531 559 642 648 665
2009 2010 - - - - - - -
660 655 - - - - - - -

Sources : Ldh/EHESS/Cassini until 1962, INSEE database from 1968 (population without double counting and municipal population from 2006)


Aïcirits-Camou-Suhast is classified by the INSEE[15] among the communes which are predominantly rural areas in the hilly agricultural region of the Basque Country. It is part of a favoured agricultural area known as "simple" (under rules of the Ministry of Agriculture, Food, Fisheries and Rural Affairs).

The registered office of the Lur Berri company, a large food cooperative group, is located in Aïcirits-Camou-Suhast.

The town is part of the designated zone of Ossau-iraty.

It also hosts other companies in the agri-food sector as one of the first fifty two communes of the department:

  • Union agricultural coop feed livestock (feed manufacturing for farm animals);
  • Haraguy-Bayonne ham (industrial preparation of meat products);
  • LBO (food production for farm animals);
  • Lajournade SAS (industrial preparation of meat products).

Culture and heritage[edit]


According to the Map of the Seven Basque Provinces published in 1863 by Prince Louis-Lucien Bonaparte, the dialect of Basque spoken in Aicirits-Camou-Suhast is eastern low Navarrese.

The village has a cave at Camou (the grotto Oltzibarre) closely linked to the Basque legend of Txahalgorri,[16] the young red bull.

Civil heritage[edit]

  • The former Chateau of Camou (17th century).Logo monument historique - rouge sans texte.svg[17] It contains collections of ancient tools and models of machines from plans of Leonardo da Vinci.

Religious Heritage[edit]

  • The Church of Saint Martin(1841).Logo monument historique - rouge sans texte.svg[18]

Notable People linked to the commune[edit]

See also[edit]

External links[edit]

Notes and references[edit]



  1. ^ "Populations légales 2016". INSEE. Retrieved 25 April 2019.
  2. ^ Brigitte Jobbé-Duval, Dictionary of place names - Pyrénées-Atlantiques, 2009, Ed. Archives and Culture, ISBN 978-2-35077-151-9, passage 12 (in French)
  3. ^ a b Google Maps
  4. ^ Géoportail, IGN (in French)
  5. ^ a b c Topographic Dictionary of the Department of Basses-Pyrenees, Paul Raymond, Imprimerie nationale, 1863, Digitised from Lyon Public Library 15 June 2011 (in French)
  6. ^ a b Jean-Baptiste Orpustan, New Basque Toponymy, Presses universitaires de Bordeaux, 2006, ISBN 2 86781 396 4 (in French)
  7. ^ Notaries of La Bastide-Villefranche in the Departmental Archives of Pyrénées-Atlantiques (in French)
  8. ^ Manuscript from the 14th century in the Departmental Archives of Pyrénées-Atlantiques (in French)
  9. ^ Contracts retained by Ohix, Notary of Soule, Manuscripts from the 15th century in the Departmental Archives of Pyrénées-Atlantiques (in French)
  10. ^ Titles of the Kingdom of Navarre in the Departmental Archives of Pyrénées-Atlantiques (in French)
  11. ^ Derecho de naturaleza que la merindad de San-Juan-del-pie-del-puerto, una de las seys de Navarra, tiene en Castilla, 1622 (in Spanish)
  12. ^ Titles published by don José Yanguas y Miranda (in Spanish)
  13. ^ List of Mayors of France (in French)
  14. ^ Intercommunality of Pyrénées-Atlantiques, Cellule informatique préfecture 64[permanent dead link], consulted on 22 October 2012 (in French)
  15. ^ INSEE website - Notice on Aïcirits-Camou-Suhast
  16. ^ Philippe Veyrin, The Basques, Ed. Arthaud, 1975, ISBN 2700300386, page 233. (in French)
  17. ^ Ministry of Culture, Mérimée PA00125253 The old Chateau of Camou (in French)
  18. ^ Ministry of Culture, Mérimée IA64000679 Parish Church of Saint-Martin (in French)