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The Town Hall
The Town Hall
Coat of arms of Arbonne
Location of Arbonne
Arbonne is located in France
Arbonne is located in Nouvelle-Aquitaine
Coordinates: 43°25′58″N 1°33′00″W / 43.4328°N 1.55°W / 43.4328; -1.55Coordinates: 43°25′58″N 1°33′00″W / 43.4328°N 1.55°W / 43.4328; -1.55
CantonUstaritz-Vallées de Nive et Nivelle
IntercommunalityCA Pays Basque
 • Mayor (2020–2026) Marie-Josèphe Mialocq
10.59 km2 (4.09 sq mi)
 (Jan. 2019)[1]
 • Density220/km2 (570/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+01:00 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+02:00 (CEST)
INSEE/Postal code
64035 /64210
Elevation5–94 m (16–308 ft)
(avg. 21 m or 69 ft)
1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km2 (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.

Arbonne (French pronunciation: ​[aʁbɔn]; Basque: Arbona) is a commune in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques department in the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region of southwestern France.

The inhabitants of the commune are known as Arbonars[2][3]


Arbonne is located some 6 km south of Biarritz and 3 km east of Bidart. It is part of the Urban area of Bayonne and is located in the former province of Labourd. Access to the commune is by road D255 from Biarritz in the north passing through the village and continuing south to Saint-Pée-sur-Nivelle. The D655 branches off the D255 in the south of the commune and goes to Ahetze. The A63 autoroute passes through the northern tip of the commune but has no access from the commune. In the south of the commune is the hamlet of Le Hameau d'Arbonne. The rest of the commune is mainly farmland with patches of forest especially in the north.

Located in the drainage basin of the Adour, the commune is traversed by the Uhabia, a small coastal river that flows into the ocean at Bidart, and its tributaries: the Zirikolatzeko erreka and the Ruisseau d'Argelos.

The Ruisseau de Pemartin also flows through the commune and there is an extensive network of streams throughout the commune.[4]

Places and Hamlets[edit]

  • Aguerrea
  • Alhorga[5]
  • Allexarrea
  • Arditegia
  • Arretxea
  • Berrueta
  • Cassoua
  • Diharzenea
  • Etchardia
  • Guichenea
  • Gure Egoitza
  • le Hameau d'Arbonne
  • Harriague[5]
  • Hegoasea
  • Katalienea
  • Kuttuenea
  • Larreburua
  • Magnienea
  • Menta[5]
  • Mestelan Beherea[5]
  • Mestelania
  • Moleresia
  • Mundustenea
  • Pemartikoborda
  • Pemartin[5]
  • Perukain[5]
  • La Place[5]
  • le Pouy[5]
  • Saskoenea
  • Tribulenea
  • Xantxienea
  • Xokobia
  • Ziburria
  • Ziburriako Errota



The commune name in Basque is Arbona.[7]

Brigitte Jobbé-Duval[3] indicated that 'Arbona meant "place of tree stumps".

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

Name Spelling Date Source Page Origin Description
Arbonne Narbona 1186 Raymond
Bayonne Village
Narbone 1349 Orpustan
Alhorgako Erreka L'Alhorga 1863 Raymond
A tributary of the Uhabia flowing from Saint-Pée-sur-Nivelle and Ahetze
Berrueta Berhouetta 1863 Raymond
Harriague Harriague 1863 Raymond
Hurmalague Hurmalague 1863 Raymond
Menta Menta 1198 Raymond
Bayonne Hamlet
Mente 1523 Raymond
Mestelan Beherea Mestelan 1760 Raymond
Collations Farm (a prebend of this name was present in the Arbonne church)
Mesthelan 1863 Raymond
Pemartin Pémartin 1863 Raymond
Perukain Perucam 13th century Raymond
Bayonne Hamlet
Pérucain 1863 Raymond
La Place La Place 1863 Raymond
Le Pouy la chapelle de Pouy près Bayonne 1751 Raymond
Intendance Farm
Pouy 1863 Raymond




The oldest lord of Arbonne whose names are known are from the Sault family, Viscounts of Labourd. At the end of the 14th century the lordship was owned by the Saint-Julien family (originally from Lower Navarre) and then in 1408 to the Amezqueta family.[12]

The Act of 4 March 1790,[13] which determined the new administrative landscape of France by creating departments and districts, created the Department of Basses-Pyrénées to bring together Béarn, the Gascon lands in Bayonne and Bidache, and three French Basque provinces. For these three provinces three districts were created: Mauléon, Saint-Palais, and Ustaritz which replaced the Bailiwick of Labourd. The seat of Ustaritz was transferred almost immediately to Bayonne. Its Directorate pushed many municipalities into adopting new names conforming to the spirit of the Revolution. Arbonne was called Constante,[14] Ustaritz became Marat-sur-Nive, Itxassou Union, Saint-Étienne-de-Baïgorry Thermopyles, Saint-Palais Mont-Bidouze, Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port Nive-Franche, Louhossoa Montagne-sur-Nive, Saint-Jean-de-Luz Chauvin-Dragon, Ainhoa Mendiarte, and Souraïde Mendialde.


Arms of Arbonne
Adopted by the Town Council on 20 May 1988.[12]

Or, a Tauzin oak Vert accompanied at sinister by a bear Sable attached to the trunk of the tree and at dexter two nails of Sable posed in chevron inverted.


List of Successive Mayors[15][16]

Mayors from the French Revolution to 1943
From To Name
1790? 1794 Daguerre
1794 1795 Dominique Duhart (Mayor of Constante which united Arbonne, Arcangues, and Bassussarry)
1795 Jean Laborde (Mayor of Constante)
1814 1817 Pierre Landaboure
1817 1822 Jean Diharce
1822 1823 Martin Hegoas
1823 1827 Charles Borotra
1827 1840 Mathieu Duhart
1840 1842 Hirigoyen
1842 1849 Doyhenard
1849 1859 Laborde
1859 1864 Michel Dokhelar
1864 1876 Laurent Hirigoyen
1876 1881 Jean Dufau
1881 1896 Jean Borotra
1896 1904 Jean Dufau
1904 1943 Bernard Housset
Mayors from 1943
From To Name
1943 1945 Jean Hegoas
1945 1948 Émile Martin
1953 1971 André Gromard
1971 1977 Didier Borotra
1977 1995 Bernard Abeberry
1995 2008 Jean Bareille
2008 2026 Marie-Josèphe Mialocq


Arbonne is part of nine inter-communal structures:

  • the Communauté d'agglomération du Pays Basque;
  • the SIVOM of Arbonne-Arcangues-Bassussarry;
  • the SIVU of Arbonne-Bidart;
  • the Ouhabia association;
  • the mixed association of Bizi Garbia;
  • the Association for promotion of basque culture;
  • the mixed association for management of Ura drinking water;
  • the mixed association for sanitation in Ura;
  • the Energy association of Pyrénées-Atlantiques.

The commune is part of the Eurocité basque Bayonne-San Sebastian (fr) (a cross-border association to develop the area from Bayonne in France to San Sebastian in Spain).


In 2017 the commune had 2,223 inhabitants.

Historical population
YearPop.±% p.a.
1793 608—    
1800 555−1.29%
1806 560+0.15%
1821 520−0.49%
1831 690+2.87%
1836 745+1.55%
1841 715−0.82%
1846 708−0.20%
1851 700−0.23%
1856 685−0.43%
1861 700+0.43%
1866 705+0.14%
1872 733+0.65%
1876 724−0.31%
1881 790+1.76%
1886 800+0.25%
1891 770−0.76%
1896 759−0.29%
YearPop.±% p.a.
1901 764+0.13%
1906 789+0.65%
1911 788−0.03%
1921 689−1.33%
1926 763+2.06%
1931 866+2.56%
1936 980+2.50%
1946 763−2.47%
1954 614−2.68%
1962 628+0.28%
1968 648+0.52%
1975 819+3.40%
1982 1,196+5.56%
1990 1,366+1.68%
1999 1,375+0.07%
2007 1,855+3.81%
2012 2,075+2.27%
2017 2,223+1.39%
Source: EHESS[14] and INSEE[17]


The commune is part of the Appellation d'origine contrôlée (AOC) zone of Ossau-iraty.

Culture and heritage[edit]

The Church of Saint-Laurent
The old benoîterie
Old Hilarri in the cemetery

According to the Map of the Seven Basque Provinces by Prince Louis-Lucien Bonaparte the basque dialect spoken in Arbonne is northern Upper Navarrese

Religious heritage[edit]

The commune has two buildings that are registered as historical monuments:

  • The Church of Saint-Laurent (12th century).Logo monument historique - rouge sans texte.svg[18] It is of a medium size with an arched Bell-gable characteristic of Labourd religious buildings. Some old Hilarri are visible in the cemetery.
  • The old Benoîterie d'Arbonne (16th century)Logo monument historique - rouge sans texte.svg[19] The Benoîterie was the residence of the Benoîte or guardian of the church and cemetery and is now the venue for exhibitions (paintings, crafts).



The commune has a general practitioner, three nurses, a speech therapist, a physiotherapist, and a dentist - all in the village centre.


Arbonne has two primary schools, one public and one private (Saint-Laurent school)

Notable people linked to the commune[edit]

  • Jean Borotra - called the Basque bondissant (the Bounding Basque), born in 1898 at Biarritz and died in 1994 at Arbonne, a tennis player and French politician
  • Bernard Béreau, born in 1940 at Arbonne and died in 2005, he was a French footballer
  • Marie-Michèle Beaufils, born in 1949 at Arbonne, she is a contemporary writer

See also[edit]


  • Arbonne, Arbona, Collective work under the direction of Hubert Lamant-Duhart, Ekaina, 1988 (in French)


  1. ^ "Populations légales 2019". The National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies. 29 December 2021.
  2. ^ Inhabitants of Pyrénées-Atlantiques (in French)
  3. ^ a b Brigitte Jobbé-Duval, Dictionary of place names - Pyrénées-Atlantiques, 2009, Archives and Culture, ISBN 978-2-35077-151-9 (in French)
  4. ^ a b Google Maps
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i Topographic Dictionary of the Department of Basses-Pyrenees, Paul Raymond, Imprimerie nationale, 1863, Digitised from Lyon Public Library 15 June 2011 (in French)
  6. ^ Géoportail, IGN (in French)
  7. ^ Euskaltzaindia - Academy of the Basque language (Basque)
  8. ^ Manuscript from the 14th century in the Departmental Archives of Pyrénées-Atlantiques (in French)
  9. ^ Manuscripts from the 17th and 18th centuries in the Departmental Archives of Pyrénées-Atlantiques (in French)
  10. ^ Chapter of Bayonne in the Departmental Archives of Pyrénées-Atlantiques (in French)
  11. ^ Titles of the intendance of Pau - Departmental Archives of Pyrénées-Atlantiques (in French)
  12. ^ a b Hubert Lamant-Duhart, Arbonne, Arbona, Collective work under the direction of Hubert Lamant-Duhart, Ekaina, 1988 (in French)
  13. ^ Philippe Veyrin, The Basques, Arthaud, 1947, reprinted 1975, ISBN 2 7003 0038 6, p. 185 (in French)
  14. ^ a b Des villages de Cassini aux communes d'aujourd'hui: Commune data sheet Arbonne, EHESS. (in French).
  15. ^ Hubert Lamant-Duhart in Arbonne, Arbona, Collective work under the direction of Hubert Lamant-Duhart, Ekaina, 1988, p. 213 (in French)
  16. ^ List of Mayors of France
  17. ^ Population en historique depuis 1968, INSEE
  18. ^ Ministry of Culture, Mérimée PA00084554 Church of Saint-Laurent (in French)
  19. ^ Ministry of Culture, Mérimée PA00084551 Benoîterie d'Arbonne (in French)

External links[edit]