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Bourges is a commune in central Francemarker on the Yèvremarker river. It is the capital of the department of Chermarker and also was the capital of the former province of Berry.


The name of the city is either derived from the Bituriges, the name of the original inhabitants, or from the Germanic Burg (French: Bourg. Spanish: Burgos. English, others: Burgh, Berg, or Borough), for "hill/village". Its Celtic name was Avaricon. In the Gallic Wars, the Gauls practiced a scorched-earth policy, but the inhabitants of Avaricon begged not to have their city burned, and it was spared due to its good defenses provided by the surrounding marshes and a strong southern wall.

The third century Saint Ursinus, also known as Saint Ursin, is considered the first bishop of the city. Currently, Bourges is the seat of an archbishopric.

The Gothic Cathedral of Saint Etiennemarker, begun at the end of the twelfth century, is listed as a World Heritage Site. It is considered the earliest example of the high gothic style of the thirteenth century.

During the Middle Ages, Bourges was the capital of a Viscounty until the fourteenth century. The future king, Charles VII, sought refuge there. His son, Louis XI, was born there in 1423. In 1438, Charles decreed the Pragmatic Sanction of Bourges. During this period, Bourges was also a major capital of alchemy.

The city has a long tradition of art and history, other sites of importance include the Palace of Jacques Cœur and a sixty-five-hectare district of timber houses and grande homes.

The Impressionist painter, Berthe Morisot, was born in Bourges on 14 January 1841.

Main sights

Floorplan of the cathedral of Bourges

Colleges and universities

International relations

Twin towns — Sister cities

Bourges is twinned with:
Half-timbered houses in Place Gordaine


Flag of Bourges
The Printemps de Bourges music festival takes place in Bourges every year.

See also


External links

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