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The war memorial in Caudry
The war memorial in Caudry
Coat of arms of Caudry
Location of Caudry
Caudry is located in France
Caudry is located in Hauts-de-France
Coordinates: 50°07′33″N 3°24′45″E / 50.1258°N 3.4125°E / 50.1258; 3.4125Coordinates: 50°07′33″N 3°24′45″E / 50.1258°N 3.4125°E / 50.1258; 3.4125
IntercommunalityCA Caudrésis - Catésis
 • Mayor (2020–2026) Frédéric Bricout
12.94 km2 (5.00 sq mi)
 (Jan. 2019)[1]
 • Density1,100/km2 (2,800/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+01:00 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+02:00 (CEST)
INSEE/Postal code
59139 /59540
Elevation103–138 m (338–453 ft)
1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km2 (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.

Caudry (French pronunciation: ​[kodʁi]) is a commune in the Nord department in northern France.[2] Its inhabitants are called the 'Caudrésiens'. The town is mostly known as the Capital City of French Lace (along with Calais). Caudry station has rail connections to Douai, Cambrai, Paris, Lille and Saint-Quentin.


The city of Caudry has not always carried its current name. However, this last derives from the previous appellations of the city:

  • Calderiacum since 1087.
  • Caudris since 1129.
  • Cauderi since 1219.
  • Caudri-en-Borneville.
  • Caudri since 1286.
  • Caudry since 1349.[3]


In the Middle Ages, as tradition will have it, Maxellende, a daughter of the lord of Caudry, was stabbed to death by one Harduin d'Amerval on 13 November 670 after turning him down. Following this Harduin became blind. However it is said that he recovered his sight as his victim's body was carried past him during its translation. Since then Maxellende has been the patron saint of Caudry and of the blind or partially sighted.

Altarpiece with Saint Maxellende in the nearby town of Le Cateau-Cambrésis

In the 19th century Caudry started specializing in tulle and lace making.

The first loom was installed in 1826 with parts smuggled from England. By 1913 there were some 650 looms employing several thousand workers. The population expanded from 1,926 in 1804 to 13,360 in 1911.

Caudry was shelled and burnt during the August 1914 Battle of Le Cateau, where it was on the left flank of the line of the retreating British Expeditionary Force.[4] It remained under German occupation until recaptured in late 1918.[5]

Today Caudry remains, with Calais, the only town in France where lace is still made. A lace museum has been opened in a former workshop in the town centre.

Lords (Seigneuries)[edit]

Many different Lords (French: Seigneurs) owned Caudry's lands and properties and had administrative power over the town. The following are the Lords of Caudry (French: Seigneurs de Caudry) chronologically ordered:

  • Almaric de Caudry (1007).
  • Amulric de Caudry (1078).
  • Mathieu de Caudry (1140).
  • Alondus de Fontaines, Régnier de Beaumont, Adam de Caudry (1150).
  • Adam de Caudry, vassal of Adam de Walincourt (1207).
  • Lambert de Caudry, married to Agnès de Héripont (1219).
  • Gérard de Saint-Aubert, Régnier de Beaumont (1220).
  • Alulphus de Caudry, Chevalier (1223).
  • Adam de Caudry (1227).
  • Jean Flamen, Seigneur de Caudry et de la Sotière (1233).
  • Adam de Caudry (1239).
  • Jean de l'aitre (1241).
  • Adam Kight and Lord of Caudry (1249).
  • Mathieu de Caudry (1272).
  • Adam, Sire de Caudry (1278).
  • Jean de Brebière, became 'Lord of Caudry' by having married Alys, Adam de Caudry (1315)'s daughter.
  • Jacques de Haspres, became 'Lord of Caudry' by having married Marie, Adam de Caudry (1322)'s other daughter.
  • Adam Flament, Seigneur de Caudry (1347).
  • Adam, dit Flament, Seigneur de Caudry, bailli du Cambrésis (1360).
  • Pierre de Caudry (died in 1424).
  • Guillaume de Viefville, Lord of Romeries and Caudry (1530).
  • Pierre de Viefville (1570).
  • Charles de Viefville (1635).
  • Charles de Lignières (1672).
  • Félix-Ignace-Guillaume de Taffin, Lord of Troisvilles, bought the 'Seigneurie de Caudry' (1755).
  • Charles-Augustin-Hyacinthe Cordier, bought the 'Seigneurie de Caudry' then the one of Potelle and Borneville (1763). He was the last Lord of Caudry.[6][7]


The city is mostly known as the Capital City of French Lace (along with Calais) and is considered a landmark of French sartorial heritage and high craftsmanship for its art of weaving the finest and most precious fabrics (including Chantilly lace, Leavers lace, silk or tulle) through its centuries-old textile industry. The city is a lead supplier for luxury fashion houses such as Chanel or Gucci. The city also supplies brands such as Yves Saint Laurent, Dolce & Gabbana, La Perla, Alexander McQueen or Ralph Lauren. In recent history, among the most internationally publicized creations made out of Caudry’s lace were Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge’s wedding gown worn while marrying Prince William, Duke of Cambridge in Westminster Abbey on 29 April 2011 or Amal Clooney’s wedding dress worn in September 2014 in Venice, Italy while marrying American actor George Clooney.[8][9] Numerous artists and politicians such as Lady Gaga, Beyonce or Michelle Obama[10] have worn Caudry's lace.[11]

Film Industries[edit]

Since 1910, Caudry’s lace industries have closely collaborated with costume designers working for stage productions and film industries within Hollywood; the Cinema of Europe; East Asian cinema (particularly the cinema of Japan, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and South Korea); Bollywood and West Asian cinemas (Iranian cinema, Israeli cinema, Jewish cinema and Turkish cinema). Caudry’s lace and textile creations were used in hundreds of films such as in Luc Besson’s The Extraordinary Adventures of Adèle Blanc-Sec (2010), The Hunger Games (film series) starring Jennifer Lawrence (2012-2015) or Sam Mendes’s Skyfall (2012) part of the James Bond series and starring Daniel Craig. In 2013, costume designer Catherine Martin earned the Academy Award for Best Costume Design as well as the Academy Award for Best Production Design for her work on Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby (2014) starring Leonardo DiCaprio.[12] The dresses created for this film and notably the ones worn by Carey Mulligan were made with 1,400 meters of lace made in Caudry. Martin chose 210 drawings, out of 8,000 available.[13]

Notable people[edit]

Twin towns[edit]

Caudry is twinned with:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Populations légales 2019". The National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies. 29 December 2021.
  2. ^ INSEE commune file
  3. ^ "History of Caudry". Caudry's Townhall. 3 May 2016. Retrieved 25 March 2019.
  4. ^ Major A.F. Becke (1919). The Royal Regiment of Artillery at the Battle of Le Cateau.
  5. ^ Bajart, Léonce (1987). Caudry : vu par Léonce Bajart. Les Amis du Caudrésis. ISBN 29501771.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: ignored ISBN errors (link) BNF 349315461.
  6. ^ "History of Caudry". Caudry's Townhall. 19 May 2017. Retrieved 25 March 2019.
  7. ^ Archives Du Nord (1842). Archives historiques et littéraire du Nord de la France, et de Midi de la Belgique. Digitalized by the University of California on Oct 9, 2009: Bureau des Archives de Valenciennes.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: location (link)
  8. ^ Friedman, Vanessa (19 April 2016). "Chanel Rides to the Aid of Amal Clooney's Lacemaker". The New-York Times. Retrieved 25 March 2019.
  9. ^ Thomas, Dana (7 December 2016). "Ensuring a Future for Lace". The New-York Times. Retrieved 25 March 2019.
  10. ^ Fouquenet, Maelle (28 April 2009). "Michelle Obama habillée en dentelle de Caudry". L'Observateur du Cambrésis. Retrieved 25 March 2019.
  11. ^ H., H. (7 September 2016). "Beyoncé dit " oui " à la dentelle de Calais-Caudry". La Voix Du Nord. Retrieved 25 March 2019.
  12. ^ Maddox, Garry (3 March 2014). "Catherine Martin breaks record with fourth Oscar win". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 25 March 2019.
  13. ^ Dudzinski, Francis (13 March 2014). "An Oscar for Caudry's Lace (Un oscar pour la dentelle de Caudry)". L'Usine Nouvelle. Retrieved 25 March 2019.
  14. ^ M. (25 November 2016). "CAUDRY Charles Lemaire à l'affiche d'un nouveau court-métrage sur le Web". La Voix du Nord. Retrieved 25 March 2019.
  15. ^ "Arthur Ramette (1897-1988)". Bibliothèque nationale de France | site François-Mitterrand. 17 April 2017. Retrieved 25 March 2019.

External links[edit]