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Nord (French department)

Department of France Department in Hauts-de-France, France
Nord
Department
Prefecture building of the Nord department, in Lille
Prefecture building of the Nord department, in Lille
Flag of Nord
Flag
Coat of arms of Nord
Coat of arms
Location of Nord in France
Location of Nord in France
Coordinates:50°23′N 03°19′E / 50.383°N 3.317°E
CountryFrance
RegionHauts-de-France
PrefectureLille
SubprefecturesAvesnes-
sur-Helpe
Cambrai
Douai
Dunkirk
Valenciennes
Government
 • President of the General CouncilJean-René Lecerf
Area
 • Total5,742.74 km (2,217.28 sq mi)
Population
 (2017)
 • Total2,604,361
 • Rank1st
 • Density450/km (1,200/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+1 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+2 (CEST)
Department number59
Arrondissements6
Cantons41
Communes648
^1 French Land Register data, which exclude estuaries, and lakes, ponds, and glaciers larger than 1 km

Nord (French: département du Nord or simply Nord, pronounced [nɔʁ]; Picard: départémint dech Nord; West Flemish and Dutch: Noorderdepartement, lit. 'Northern department') is a department in the Hauts-de-France region of France bordering Belgium. It was created from the western halves of the historical counties of Flanders and Hainaut, and the Bishopric of Cambrai. The modern coat of arms was inherited from the County of Flanders.

Nord is the country's most populous department. It also contains the metropolitan region of Lille (the main city and the prefecture of the department), the fourth-largest urban area in France after Paris, Lyon and Marseille. Within the department is located the part of France where the French Flemish dialect of Dutch is still spoken (along with French) as a native language. Similarly, the distinct French Picard dialect, Ch'ti is spoken here.

History

Tribes of the Belgae, such as the Menapii and Nervii were the first peoples recorded in the area later known as Nord.

During the 4th and 5th Centuries, Roman rulers of Gallia Belgica secured the route from the major port of Bononia (Boulogne) to Colonia (Cologne), by co-opting Germanic peoples north-east of this corridor, such as the Tungri. In effect, the area known later as Nord became an isogloss (linguistic border) between the Germanic and Romance languages. Saxon colonisation of the region from the 5th to the 8th centuries likely shifted the isogloss further south so that, by the 9th century, most people immediately north of Lille spoke a dialect of Old Dutch. This has remained evident in the place names of the region. After the County of Flanders became part of France in the 9th century, the isogloss moved north and east.

Extent of West Flemish spoken in the arrondissement of Dunkirk in 1874 and 1972 respectively.

During the 14th Century, much of the area came under the control of the Duchy of Burgundy and in subsequent centuries was therefore part of the Habsburg Netherlands (from 1482) and the Spanish Netherlands (1581).

Areas that later constituted Nord were ceded to France by treaties in 1659, 1668, and 1678, becoming the Counties of Flanders and Hainaut, and part of the Bishopric of Cambrai.

On 4 March 1790, during the French Revolution, Nord became one of the original 83 departments created to replace the counties.

Modern government policies making French the only official language have led to a decline in use of the Dutch West Flemish dialect. There are currently 20,000 speakers of a sub-dialect of West Flemish in the arrondissement of Dunkirk and it appears likely that this particular sub-dialect will be extinct within decades. There is, however, a movement to bring back use of the Dutch language as a second official language.

Geography

Nord is part of the current Hauts-de-France region and is surrounded by the French departments of Pas-de-Calais and Aisne, as well as by Belgium and the North Sea. Its area is 5,742.8 km (2,217.3 sq mi).

Situated in the north of the country along the western half of the Belgian frontier, the department is unusually long and narrow. Its principal city is Lille, which with nearby Roubaix, Tourcoing and Villeneuve d'Ascq constitutes the center of a cluster of industrial and former mining towns totalling slightly over a million inhabitants. Other important cities are Valenciennes, Douai, and Dunkirk. The principal rivers are the following: Yser, Lys, Escaut, Scarpe, Sambre

Demographics

Historical population
YearPop.±% p.a.
1801765,001—    
1806839,530+1.88%
1821905,777+0.51%
1831989,938+0.89%
18411,085,298+0.92%
18511,158,285+0.65%
18611,303,380+1.19%
18721,447,764+0.96%
18811,603,259+1.14%
18911,736,341+0.80%
19011,866,994+0.73%
19111,961,780+0.50%
19211,787,918−0.92%
19312,029,449+1.28%
19362,022,167−0.07%
19461,917,452−0.53%
19542,098,545+1.13%
19622,293,112+1.11%
19682,417,899+0.89%
19752,511,478+0.54%
19822,520,526+0.05%
19902,531,855+0.06%
19992,555,020+0.10%
20072,564,950+0.05%
20122,587,128+0.17%
20172,604,361+0.13%
source:SPLAF and INSEE

With a population of 2,604,361 in 2017, Nord is the department with the largest population.

Politics

The President of the Departmental Council is the unaffiliated right-winger Jean-René Lecerf.

The first President of the Fifth Republic, General Charles de Gaulle, was born in Lille in the department on 22 November 1890.

Partyseats
The Republicans (LR)25
Socialist Party (PS)16
Miscellaneous right (DVD)15
Union of Democrats and Independents (UDI)11
French Communist Party (PCF)10
Miscellaneous left (DVG)2
France Arise (DLF)1
Citizen and Republican Movement (MRC)1
Radical Party of the Left (PRG)1

Current National Assembly Representatives

ConstituencyMemberParty
Nord's 1st constituencyAdrien QuatennensLa France Insoumise
Nord's 2nd constituencyUgo BernalicisLa France Insoumise
Nord's 3rd constituencyChristophe Di PompeoLa République En Marche!
Nord's 4th constituencyBrigitte LisoLa République En Marche!
Nord's 5th constituencySébastien HuygheThe Republicans
Nord's 6th constituencyCharlotte LecocqLa République En Marche!
Nord's 7th constituencyFrancis VercamerUnion of Democrats and Independents
Nord's 8th constituencyCatherine OssonLa République En Marche!
Nord's 9th constituencyValérie PetitLa République En Marche!
Nord's 10th constituencyVincent LedouxThe Republicans
Nord's 11th constituencyLaurent PietraszewskiLa République En Marche!
Nord's 12th constituencyAnne-Laure CattelotLa République En Marche!
Nord's 13th constituencyChristian HutinCitizen and Republican Movement
Nord's 14th constituencyPaul ChristopheThe Republicans
Nord's 15th constituencyJennifer de TemmermanLa République En Marche!
Nord's 16th constituencyAlain BruneelFrench Communist Party
Nord's 17th constituencyDimitri HoubronLa République En Marche!
Nord's 18th constituencyGuy BricoutUnion of Democrats and Independents
Nord's 19th constituencySébastien ChenuNational Rally
Nord's 20th constituencyFabien RousselFrench Communist Party
Nord's 21st constituencyBéatrice DescampsUnion of Democrats and Independents

Economy

At the forefront of France's 19th century industrialisation, the area suffered severely during World War I and now faces the economic, social and environmental problems associated with the decline of coal mining with its neighbours following the earlier decline of the Lille-Roubaix textile industry.

Until recently, the department was dominated economically by coal mining, which extended through the heart of the department from neighbouring Artois into central Belgium.

Tourism

Other topics

This article uses material from the Wikipedia article Nord (French department), which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License (view authors).


Date of last edit: 2021-01-28T20:13:12.000Z