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Creuse ( ) is a department in central Francemarker named after the Creuse Rivermarker.


Creuse is one of the original 83 departments created during the French Revolution on March 4, 1790. It was created from the former province of La Marche.


Creuse is part of the region of Limousinmarker and is surrounded by the departments of Corrèzemarker, Haute-Viennemarker, Alliermarker, Puy-de-Dômemarker, Chermarker, and Indremarker.

It is in the Massif Centralmarker and permeated by the Creuse Rivermarker and its tributaries. The river is dammed at several locations both for water supply and hydroelectricity generation. As is typical for an inland area of continental Europe, Creuse has relatively cold winters with some snowfall into April, but also hot summers. Rain falls throughout the year because of the relatively high elevation.

The topography is principally rolling hills intersected by often steep valleys. The terrestrial ecology is typically cool temperate with a species mix common in the western UKmarker: with oak, ash, chestnut, hazel and Prunus species dominating the woodlands. There are no commercial vineyards. Much of the farming is beef cattle: Charolais and Limousin, and also sheep.


The inhabitants of the department are called Creusois. Over the past two generations Creuse has experienced the greatest proportional population decline of any French department, from 164,000 in 1960 to 124,000 in 1999 - a decrease of 24%.


The President of the General Council is Jean-Jacques Lozach of the Socialist Partymarker.

Party seats
Socialist Partymarker 12
Union for a Popular Movement 8
Miscellaneous Left 5
French Communist Party 1
Left Radical Party 1

Notable Creuseans


The major tourist attractions are the tapestry museum in Aubussonmarker and the castles of Villemonteix, Boussac, and Banizette. The monastery of Moutier-d'Ahunmarker has exceptional wood carvings from the 17th century. (:fr:Abbaye de Moutier-d'Ahun).

Guéret, Creuse is also home to a large nearby animal park named " Les Loups de Chabrières" containing some of France's only wolves, held in semi-captivity. It includes 24 European Grey wolves [13584], two Canadian White Wolves [13585] and two Canadian Black Wolves [13586] in five distinct enclosures.

Since the late 1990s, the Creuse has become a tourist destination. The summers are relatively warm, but not as hot as in the southern parts of France. Because of the forested landscape and little pollution, many foreigners (notably British and Dutch, but also German and Belgian) have sought to buy vacation homes in the Creuse.

Creuse Landscape.

See also

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