Indre-et-Loire (French pronunciation: [ɛ̃.dʁ‿e.lwaʁ] (listen)) is a department in west-central France named after the Indre River and Loire River. In 2016, it had a population of 606,223. Sometimes referred to as Touraine, the name of the historic region, it nowadays is part of the Centre-Val de Loire region. Its prefecture is Tours and subprefectures are Chinon and Loches. Indre-et-Loire is a touristic destination for its numerous monuments that are part of the Châteaux of the Loire Valley.
Location of Indre-et-Loire in France
|Region||Centre-Val de Loire|
|• President of the Departmental Council||Jean-Gérard Paumier (LR)|
|• Total||6,127 km2 (2,366 sq mi)|
|• Density||99/km2 (260/sq mi)|
|Time zone||UTC+1 (CET)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC+2 (CEST)|
|^1 French Land Register data, which exclude estuaries, and lakes, ponds, and glaciers larger than 1 km2|
Indre-et-Loire is one of the original 83 departments established during the French Revolution on 4 March 1790. It was created from the former province of Touraine and of small portions of Orléanais, Anjou and Poitou. Its prefecture Tours was a centre of learning in the Early Middle Ages, having been a key focus of Christian evangelisation since St Martin became its first bishop around 375. From the mid-15th century, the royal court repaired to the Loire Valley, with Tours as its capital; the confluence of the Loire River and Cher River became a centre of silk manufacturing and other luxury goods, including the wine trade, creating a prosperous bourgeoisie.
After the creation of the department it remained politically conservative, as Honoré de Balzac recorded in several of his novels. Conservative Tours refused to welcome the railways which instead were obliged to route their lines by way of Saint-Pierre-des-Corps on the city's eastern edge. The moderate temper of the department's politics remained apparent after the Franco-Prussian War of 1870: sentiments remained predominantly pro-royalist during the early years of the Third Republic. For most of the nineteenth century, Indre-et-Loire was a rural department, but pockets of heavy-duty industrialisation began to appear towards the century's end, accompanied by left-wing politics. 1920 saw the birth of the French Communist Party at the Congress of Tours. By 1920, Saint-Pierre-des-Corps had become a major railway hub and a centre of railway workshops: it had also acquired a reputation as a bastion of working class solidarity.
|Union for a Popular Movement||5|
|•||French Communist Party||1|
Current National Assembly RepresentativesEdit
Indre-et-Loire is home to numerous outstanding châteaux that are open to the public, among them are the following:
- Château d'Amboise
- Château of Azay-le-Rideau
- Château de la Bourdaisière
- Château de Chenonceau
- Château de Chinon
- Château de la Guerche
- Château de Langeais
- Château de Loches
- Château de Marçay
- Château de Montpoupon
- Château de Plessis-lez-Tours
- Château du Rivau
- Château de Tours
- Château de Villandry
- Château du Clos Lucé
- Château d'Ussé
- Site sur la Population et les Limites Administratives de la France
- Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). Encyclopædia Britannica. 14 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 501. .