Barby, Ardennes

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Barby (Ardennes) city limit sign.JPG
Barby is located in France
Coordinates: 49°31′22″N 4°18′49″E / 49.5228°N 4.3136°E / 49.5228; 4.3136Coordinates: 49°31′22″N 4°18′49″E / 49.5228°N 4.3136°E / 49.5228; 4.3136
Country France
Region Grand Est
Department Ardennes
Arrondissement Rethel
Canton Rethel
Intercommunality Pays Rethélois
 • Mayor (2005–2020) Christian Noizet
Area1 11.32 km2 (4.37 sq mi)
Population (2010)2 375
 • Density 33/km2 (86/sq mi)
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 • Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
INSEE/Postal code 08048 /08300
Elevation 66–142 m (217–466 ft)
(avg. 73 m or 240 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.

Barby is a commune in the Ardennes department in the Grand Est region of northern France.[1]

The inhabitants of the commune are known as Barbyons or Barbyonnes.[2]

The commune has been awarded three flowers by the National Council of Towns and Villages in Bloom in the Competition of cities and villages in Bloom.[3]


1935 Map of Barby

Barby is located immediately north-west of Rethel and immediately south-east of Château-Porcien. Access to the commune is by the D926 road from Rethel which passes through the heart of the commune and the village before continuing north-west to Château-Porcien. The D946 from Rethel passes through the north of the commune as it goes north-west to Seraincourt. The commune is entirely farmland.[4][5]

The Aisne river passes through the south-east of the commune forming a small part of the south-eastern border as it flows west to eventually join the Oise at Compiègne. The Vaux river flows south, forming the western border of the commune, to join the Aisne just outside the south-western tip of the commune. The Ruisseau de Bourgeron flows from the north-east through the commune and the village and joins the Aisne on the southern border. The Canal des Ardennes is parallel to and south of the Aisne and forms a small portion of the southern border of the commune.[4]


July and August are very hot and dry with temperatures up to 38 °C. Even so, rainfall is more frequent in summer, but the winters are shorter and less severe. The cold weather lasts only from October to March which favours corn crops and especially Kitchen gardens.


A Wayside Cross on the presumed site of the birthplace of Jean de Gerson

Excavations have uncovered a Bronze Age tomb in Barby and the village is traversed by the old Roman road from Rethel to Château-Porcien.

The village of Gerson was located on the current territory of the commune in the Middle Ages but is now gone. It was at Gerson that Jean Charlier de Gerson, Chancellor of the University of Paris (nicknamed Doctor Christianissimus), was born in 1363. A Wayside cross marks the place which traditionally is his birthplace. The commune named the Rue Gerson after him and the parish built a monument in the church during its construction in 1880 or 1881.

Barby appears as Barby on the 1750 Cassini Map[6] and the same on the 1790 version.[7]


List of Successive Mayors[8]

From To Name Party Position
1977 1995 Jean Fequant
1995 2004 Jean-Marie Renard
2004 2005 Louis Tanton
2005 2020 Christian Noizet

(Not all data is known)


In 2010 the commune had 375 inhabitants. The evolution of the number of inhabitants is known from the population censuses conducted in the commune since 1793. From the 21st century, a census of communes with fewer than 10,000 inhabitants is held every five years, unlike larger communes that have a sample survey every year.[Note 1]

Population Change (See database)
1793 1800 1806 1821 1831 1836 1841 1846 1851
394 478 474 498 546 598 586 593 610
1856 1861 1866 1872 1876 1881 1886 1891 1896
- - 476 398 414 415 383 341 318
1901 1906 1911 1921 1926 1931 1936 1946 1954
308 323 301 263 275 226 240 187 226
1962 1968 1975 1982 1990 1999 2006 2010 -
234 209 211 347 384 352 371 375 -

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

The War Memorial
Population of Barby


Barby is a rural commune characterised by agriculture. The wheat harvest wheat is a highlight of life in the commune.

Sites and Monuments[edit]

The Church of Saint John the Baptist
  • The Church of Saint John the Baptist dates from 1880. The Church contains many items that are registered as historical objects:
    • A Baptismal font (15th century)Logo monument historique - noir sans texte.svg[9]
    • 2 Statues: Virgin of Pity and Saints John the Baptist and John the Evangelist (15th century)Logo monument historique - noir sans texte.svg[10]
    • A Painting: The beheading of Saint John the Baptist (15th century)Logo monument historique - noir sans texte.svg[11]
    • An Altar and Retable (15th century)Logo monument historique - noir sans texte.svg[12]
    • A Statue: Saint Barbe (16th century)Logo monument historique - noir sans texte.svg[13]
    • A Statue: Saint John the Baptist (17th century)Logo monument historique - noir sans texte.svg[14]
    • A Statue: Saint Hubert (17th century)Logo monument historique - noir sans texte.svg[15]
    • A Funeral Plaque for Elisabeth la Chardenière, mother of Jean Gerson (16th century)Logo monument historique - noir sans texte.svg[16]
  • La Crauye, a chalk quarry north of the village.
  • Les Bœufs Blancs (The White Oxen), a beach on the Aisne.

Notable people linked to the commune[edit]

  • Jean Charlier de Gerson (1363-1429), Chancellor of the University of Paris.
  • Gérard Tène (or Thène), a labourer at Barby in 1644 and his son, Joseph Taine - also a labourer at Barby, were the ancestors of Hippolyte Taine.
  • Eugène Marquigny, a Jesuit and writer born in 1836 at Barby.
  • Guy Féquant, writer, born in 1949 at Barby

See also[edit]

Notes and references[edit]


  1. ^ At the beginning of the 21st century, the methods of identification have been modified by Law No. 2002-276 of 27 February 2002, the so-called "law of local democracy" and in particular Title V "census operations" allows, after a transitional period running from 2004 to 2008, the annual publication of the legal population of the different French administrative districts. For communes with a population greater than 10,000 inhabitants, a sample survey is conducted annually, the entire territory of these communes is taken into account at the end of the period of five years. The first "legal population" after 1999 under this new law came into force on 1 January 2009 and was based on the census of 2006.